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May 21, 2019 4:45 PM, EDT

XPO Logistics’ Joseph Hicks Returns to Defend Crown at Rhode Island Truck Driving Championships

Grand Champion John Hicks and RITA President Chris Maxwell at the 2018 Rhode Island Truck Driving Championships XPO Logistics driver Joseph Hicks, the 2018 Rhode Island Truck Driving Championships Grand Champion, poses with his trophy and Rhode Island Trucking Association President Chris Maxwell at last year's RITDC. (TT file photo)

Rhode Island may be the smallest state, but that doesn’t mean it lacks talented truck drivers. Competitors will get to display their skills and put on a show at the 2019 Rhode Island Truck Driving Championships on June 1 at the New England Tractor Trailer Training School in Pawtucket.

It all starts with Joseph Hicks, a 14-year driver currently employed by XPO Logistics. Hicks has been tabbed Grand Champion four times at the state championships, including in 2018, and also was the 2010 rookie of the year at the National Truck Driving Championships.

2019 NTDC

The 2019 National Truck Driving Championships

Qualifiers | Map | Photos | Video

Who: Winners from nine categories at the state level have advanced to the national competition, where a Grand Champion will be crowned

What: Contestants are judged on a written examination and their driving skills

When: Aug. 14-17

Where: Pittsburgh

Hicks will lead a group of 28 drivers that will compete this year in divisions of Step Van, Straight Truck, 3-Axle, 4-Axle, 5-Axle and Twin Trailers to see who qualifies for spots in August’s national championships, which are being held in Pittsburgh.

RHODE ISLAND ARCHIVE PAGE: Previews, recaps and more

A new feature of RITDC will pit new drivers against their more seasoned counterparts in a battle for bragging rights. The Trucking Futures class will match drivers who have commercial learner’s permits or have recently acquired their CDLs against industry veterans.