Vancouver Police motorcycle officer, Constable Adrian Thomson, can usually be found riding around Vancouver enforcing traffic laws and educating motorists, cyclists and pedestrians on the rules of the road. But to do this safely requires a high level of training and proficiency as a motorcycle rider. Constable Thomson has taken training to a whole new level, as evidenced by his recent win at the 30th Annual North American Motor Officers Association (NAMOA) conference, where he was awarded best overall Individual Rider, best overall Harley-Davidson Rider, first place in the Single Barrels Course and second place in the Timed Proficiency Course.
The three-day event was held from May 16 to May 18, 2012, at the Tulalip Resort Casino in Marysville, WA. Approximately 160 motor officers from across Washington, Oregon, Idaho, BC and Ontario attended the training conference and skills competition, riding on Harley-Davidson, Kawasaki, Honda, BMW and Victory police motorcycles.
VPD Constables Cal Davis and Bryan Smith won first place in the Pairs Barrels Course and Constable Smith also won second place in the Single Barrels Course and third place in the Slow Race.
Officers attending the NAMOA conference train and compete in a series of courses designed to test their ability to control and manoeuvre their large police motorcycles through tight turns and transitions. The events include a Proficiency Course, a Single Barrels Course, a Pairs Barrels Course (where two motorcycles are tethered together by a 36″ line) and a Slow Race.
All events are timed and penalties are assessed if the rider touches a cone, puts a foot down, drops the motorcycle or rides out of the pattern. The best overall rider on each type of motorcycle then competes in a ride-off before a panel of judges to determine the best overall individual rider. The judges score the five finalists based on riding style and control over the motorcycle.