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2016 Heartland Police Motorcycle Challenge - Grandview, Missouri

Written by  October 8, 2016

On September 23 and 24, the Heartland Police Motorcycle Challenge was held at Gail’s Harley-Davidson in Grandview, Missouri. On Friday, the competitors were able to familiarize themselves with the layout of the course and make some practice runs. The partner barrel race competition that is usually a part of the Friday agenda was not held this year.

Due to schedule conflicts for several agencies, the number of competitors was less than half of the usual. As a result, there was time for each rider to make three runs through the course. The challenging layout included weaves, footboard-dragging left and right turns, figure-8, snowman, acceleration, and breaking. Just navigating the proper path through the sea of orange cones would be a daunting task for ordinary riders, but these motor officers made it look easy, pushing their mounts to the limit of their performance. A large time clock allowed spectators to gauge the progress of the riders, but the official time was kept on a stopwatch that started as the rider entered the course from a standing or rolling start and ended when the rider put a foot down after stopping in the box that marked the end of the run. Penalties ranging from added time to disqualification were assessed for cone tap, cone down, foot down, off course, out of course, and bike down. At one point, one of the riders got stuck on a cone and pretty much mangled it while trying to free his bike. Later on, he was presented with the cone that had been signed by his fellow competitors as a memento of the occasion.

During one of the breaks between rounds, the slow ride portion of the competition was held. This year, the slow ride course was a keyhole shaped pattern, and each rider was given two opportunities to complete the ride in the longest time possible without touching a foot to the ground.

The final challenge was the knockout round. A rectangular area was laid out with several cones placed randomly inside the boundary. The competition was one-on-one with the winner advancing through the bracket and the loser being eliminated. It was a game of follow-the-leader with a coin toss determining which officer would lead. The leader had 90 seconds to try to get the follower to commit a fault. If the follower got too close, the leader could slow down and cause a foot down. Following too far behind made it difficult to complete the turns around the cones and still keep track of the random route the leader had taken. If there were no faults after 90 seconds, the leader became the follower and vice versa. If neither competitor was eliminated after 180 seconds, the rider who had recorded the better score in the long course was the one who advanced to the next round.

On behalf of the Executive Board and members of the Heartland Police Motorcycle Association, Katie Griffin said, “Thank-you for everyone that came out and supported our area motor officers! A big thank you to all the participants and the hard work they put in. We can’t say enough about Gail’s Harley Davidson and their hospitality hosting the event and all they do to support this event! THANK YOU!!! We would like to thank the American Heartland HOG chapter for being our course judges; they are a vital role in making this event happen. Thank you to Sam's Club out of Raymore for providing lunch on Thursday and Helmet House for providing the riding pants that went to the Top Gun rider. Lastly we would like to thank Butler Music for providing us with the use of a PA system.”

Official results follow:
Windshield Class
1st Place - Jacob Barlow from Kansas City. Missouri Police Department
2nd Place - Tyler White from Kansas City Missouri Police Department
3rd Place - Jason Meadors from Independence Missouri Police Department

Fairing Class
1st Place - Jason Klepac from Lenexa Kansas Police Department
2nd Place - Ben Griffin from Lee's Summit Missouri Police Department
3rd Place - Jay Richards from Lenexa Kansas Police Department

And the winner of TOP GUN and overall best rider goes to Jacob Barlow of Kansas City Missouri Police Department.

Slow Ride:
1st Place - Jason Meadors from Independence Missouri Police Department
2nd Place - Jay Richards from Lenexa Kansas Police Department
3rd Place -- Jacob Barlow from Kansas City Missouri Police Department

Participating Agencies:

Graview, MO  Holts Summit, MO  Independence, MO  Kansas City, MO  Lee's Summit, MO  Lenexa, KS  Wood Heights, MO 

Although there were fewer competitors, the spectators really enjoyed watching the competition. I admire these officers not only for their great riding skill, but also for their dedication in facing all of the challenges and dangers of police work to make the Kansas City area a safer place for all of us. I extend that sentiment to law enforcement officers everywhere. Thank you so much!

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Stripe

Photojournalist/Account Representative - Kansas City, MO

Dave Baxter, a.k.a. Stripe joined our staff in December, 2003, as a photojournalist. If that road name sounds familiar, you may have seen his photos on the pages of such publications as American Iron, V Twin, VQ, In the Wind, and Easyriders. Stripe attends as many rallies, bike shows, and charity runs as he can and is a major contributor of photos and articles to our magazine. His first assignment was our January, 2004, cover photo, where he snapped the awesome photo of a 1958 Harley-Davidson Duo Glide. A rider since the age of 14, he loves to help and encourage new riders. Stripe enjoys meeting new people and looks forward to catching many of our readers in the viewfinder of his digital camera. Contact Stripe at stripe@cycleconnections.com