APD motorcycle officers earn trophies at police rodeo

APD motorcycle officers earn trophies at police rodeo

AMARILLO, TX (KFDA) - On March 31st, April 1st, and April 2nd, four APD Motorcycle Squad officers participated in the 2016 Capital of Texas Police Chuteout Motorcycle Rodeo held in Austin, Texas.  Cpl. Ken Donais, Ofc. James Blandford, Ofc. Shaun Uselding, and Cpl. Trent Thomas competed in a field of 126 highly skilled police motorcycle officers.  The courses test the officer's ability to maneuver and balance the 900 pound Harley Davidson motorcycles, which are outfitted with police equipment.  Their efforts combined to bring home a total of six plaques.

Cpl. Trent Thomas earned two plaques.  He was 1st place in the individual Expert Fairing division.  In this event the officer must maneuver his motorcycle around a course of cones in the fastest time. Officers will receive penalties for crossing a boundary line, touching a cone, putting a foot down, failing to complete an exercise, or dropping his motorcycle. Thomas also earned 2nd place in the slow ride competition.  In this event the officer must try to get the slowest time in the course while keeping his motorcycle balanced. The time on this event will stop if the officer puts his foot down, drops his motorcycle, or crosses a boundary line.

Cpl. Ken Donais came home with a 1st place plaque in the tethered partner ride competition with Ofc. Uselding.  In this course the officers must operate precisely together, their motorcycles connected by a three foot length of rope secured with Velcro.  If the tether is pulled apart, the team is disqualified from that event.

Ofc. Shaun Uselding came home with a 1st place in tethered partner ride event with Cpl Donais and a 2nd place in the Individual Novice Fairing division, which were both described above.

Ofc. James Blandford earned a plaque for 1st place in the Individual Novice Fairing division.

The "Fairing Division" is police motorcycles equipped with the full windshield and fairing on the front, as opposed to simply a clear windshield.  The fairing reduces the rider's ability to see the small cones used to show the course, making it more difficult for them to maneuver.