A cop, a squid or both?

Dailies -



Your first reaction upon seeing a police-liveried R1 is likely one of worry. Could the cops finally be riding bikes capable of catching other motorcyclists? Then you scope the lack of gloves (or any other safety gear this side of the mandatory helmet), the loud exhausts, the anodized gewgaws and, lastly, the inches-wide chicken strips on that back tire. What on earth is going on here?

Like the police RSV4, this R1 was likely created as a personal bike by the officer riding it. There’s some chance it could be used in DARE Car-style awareness campaigns, but technically illegal components like those GYTR/Akrapovic exhausts would seem to indicate a lack of official involvement.

That RSV4 was created by LAPD officer John Morena, who uses it to increase awareness of track riding to deter illegal street racing. “ [The bike] combats street racing and gets out the message that track riding is available, safer and cost effective,” he explains. “In doing so, we break down the us versus them barriers and let youth and other riders see law enforcement officers are regular people, too.”

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This R1 wears the Long Beach Police Department crest and, as seen in this video, was on display a the IMS show there late last year.

via MotoCorsa

  • William

    The Oklahoma Highway Patrol has at least two Suzuki Hayabusa Police Interceptors.

    They bring them down each year to the Dallas IMS and show them off. They are quite a show stopper.

    If you google Oklahoma Highway Patrol Suzuki Hayabusa Police Interceptor you will find links to pics.

    • JVictor75

      Jeebus. All that bike and they STILL aren’t wearing shit for armor other than a full face.

  • HammSammich

    Wanted for impersonating a motorcyclist…

  • DavidMG

    “ [The bike] combats street racing and gets out the message that track riding is available, safer and cost effective.”

    How is it that this is accomplished?

    • http://hellforleathermagazine.com Wes Siler

      It’s a conversation starter.

      • Pete

        Sounds more like a bullshit excuse to customize his bike with taxpayer dollars.

        • http://hellforleathermagazine.com Grant Ray

          The RSV4 is not LAPD property, it’s his personal bike. As such, the custom paint was most likely privately funded as well.

          • Pete

            Understood they’re both personal rides but I’d bet dollars to doughnuts (ha!) they got the department to cover most/all of the cost of customization.

            • okto

              meow, fffft

          • BigRooster

            Even if the cop only took a write off on his personal taxes I think it’s shady.

        • Scott-jay

          Yeahbut, they’re motorcycles; not to mention the homeland security benefits.
          Link text

      • DavidMG

        My conversations with LEOs usually start with “license and registration.” I’ve never been inclined to continue past the formalities.

      • Van Doan

        Conversation goes, “So…nice cotton shirt…”

  • Pete


  • http://www.cdavisdesigns.com Chris Davis

    Blue lights on non-emergency vehicles: highly illegal. Ask James Stewart.

    • vic06

      Most states allow them for display purposes and as long as the vehicle is stopped.

  • http://rider49er.blogspot.com Mark D [EX500]

    Moto cops would be so much more intimidating in full black suits with mirrored helmets. Jodhpurs, open face helmets, and no gloves just makes you look like a dim-wit.

    Less C.H.I.P.s, more Judge Dredd.

    • Van Doan

      More JJ Abrams’ Star Trek speeder cop.

      • http://rider49er.blogspot.com Mark D [EX500]

        Ahhhh I was looking for a good picture to link to of that, but google failed me. Kirk’s bike in that movie is also epic.

        • Kevin

          I believe you meant to say, “the d-bag impersonating James T. Kirk.” #nerdrage

          • Van Doan


          • http://rider49er.blogspot.com Mark D [EX500]

            I thoroughly enjoyed that movie, and that’s coming from a guy who carries around a Starfleet Academy flask and USS Enterprise NCC-1701 bottle opener.

            • DavidMG
              • http://twitter.com/metabomber Jesse

                No field of view problems, there.

                • Kevin

                  At least the cops of the future wear full faced helmets.

                • DavidMG

                  The visor does show an off centre camera lens, so provided it’s a wide angle lens, he could have a very good field of view if it’s all being fed into an electronic viewfinder of some sort.
                  *end nerd*

            • Kevin

              Yeah, I’m the nerd outlier: the guy who hated the new Star Trek movie but loved Episode One.

              • adrenalnjunky

                wow – you really are more than a standard deviation out there… j/k

    • BigRooster

      I always wondered how they use the radio with an open face. There must me so much wind buffeting in the mic that the audio is anything but audible. I cant imagine using my Interphone F4 with the visor up or with a jet helmet, the person at the other end of the call would only hear the wind.

  • Campisi

    In doing so, we break down the us versus them barriers and let youth and other riders see law enforcement officers are regular people, too.

    A lot of regular people are power-crazed dicks for the sake of being power-crazed dicks, too.

    • poke

      And others get through life making blanket generalizations…

      • chaz

        nice poke.. i liked that

      • Campisi

        Beer helps.

      • Holden and Annette

        The cop generalized his fellow cops as “regular people.” In my experience, most of them are not. Most of them are power-crazed dicks.

        • chaz

          And most I have met are not……you don’t want the cops to treat everyone as asshole criminals….yet it’s fine for you to paint them with the same brush….

          • Campisi

            The equivalency you’re setting forth here doesn’t really make sense. “Everyone,” otherwise known as “regular” people, is a vast and highly varied group of people encompassing a very high percentage of the population. Police, on the other hand, are a self-selected group, consisting of people that are aware of the image and reputation of police and choose that moniker for themselves.

            Being a police officer in America involves having power and authority above that of the citizenry and a license (both implied and legally given) to utilize that power as you see fit within a malleable set of boundaries. This tends to draw in people that desire power and authority over others with intention to make use of that power. It follows from this that, if you generalize a police officer as being a power-crazed dick, you are much more likely to be correct than you would be if you were to generalize your neighbor or the postman or any other randomly-selected “regular” person.

            That said, I doubt HFL wants yet another police piss-match in the comments, so I’ll respect contrary opinions and consider my piece on the subject said for now.

    • Daniel

      +1 LOL

  • http://lightsoutknivesout.tumblr.com/ Scott Pargett

    I think that’s pretty cool.

    I was in a car that was pulled over by an LAPD bike cop. He wrote the driver a ticket for a moving violation. He asked the driver if they had any other questions to which they replied “No”, in a pissed off manner. I piped up..

    “Excuse me, I have one.”

    “What’s that.”

    “How do you like the Harley?”

    “I hate it. It’s terrible… slow, heavy, and hard to maneuver.” he said with a smile.

    “So I’m guessing you don’t have any say in the bikes you get?”

    “No, but we’ve all got our fingers crossed that we might get the new Honda’s next year.”

    “Well, I have a Street Triple I’ve built out to my liking. If you’d like to borrow it for a shift, I’ll be down the street working all day.”

    “I might take you up on that.”

    *Violation was for the driver not wearing a seatbelt. Something I constantly tell him to do.

    • jc_thorn

      The way you framed that story made it sound like the cop was gonna tear up the ticket or something. Or at least borrow your bike…

  • http://twitter.com/tacotv69 Taco

    Chicken strips? Wat dat mean?

    • DavidMG
      • Core


    • http://www.lgdm.fr stempere

      In France we call them Bandes de peur which can be translated to “Fear stripes”. Does anyone know where the english name comes from?

      • Penguin

        “Bandes de peur”, everything sounds so much more passionate in French.

        Chicken Strips – a Chicken is a slang term for someone who is afraid, I guess it is pretty much the same the French version. Of course KFC also do a rather tasty coated chicken breast fillet of the same name, probably the reason one has the former is riding in an upright manner to KFC to get the latter.

      • BigRooster

        Basically the same. Some highway commuters get them as well because they dont often turn.

      • Holden and Annette

        In the States, a common taunt in elementary school is, “Are you chicken?” meaning “Are you afraid?” Another way of saying it: “Are you a scaredy-cat?” We use many animals in our colloquialisms.

        • BigRooster

          Like Pussy…err cat.

  • matt

    Last week I got stopped for being a dummy, driving through a school zone going 10 over, area I hadn’t been through before, still no excuse. Cop asked if I took the bike to the track, how fast it would go, did I race it, I thought he was messing with me before he gave me a ticket. Nope. He was just curious. Let me go with a warning and told me about the gas station in town with ethanol free gas. When I left he said “be careful at the track, make sure you pay attention”. I won’t forget.

  • http://www.muthalovin.com the_doctor

    This promotes safety, too.

  • BigRooster

    “…but technically illegal components like those GYTR/Akrapovic exhausts would seem to indicate a lack of official involvement.”

    If this guy has ever or will ever write a chicken shit ticket for something similiar; he must then be canned.

  • Kevin

    “Then you scope the lack of gloves (or any other safety gear this side of the mandatory helmet)…”

    Looks to me like his gloves are sitting on the gas tank.

    • adrenalnjunky

      Wow – Damn good eyes, but I def see them now. Amazing how gloves can back the squid-meter way down.

      Does he get any squid points taken away for the kevlar he’s prolly wearing?

  • Jochen
  • Fizzy Fox

    I’m of the belief that a cop should be a cut above. If he’s riding around with illegal mods, he has no leg to stand on when pulling somebody over for the same thing. This guy should be fired.

    • chaz

      what illegal mods?

      • Campisi

        Non-smog exhaust and emergency-vehicle lighting.

    • Pete

      Amen. Want to improve society? Triple the salaries of cops and teachers. Then make sure you also make it 3X harder to become either. Make ‘em the elite, as they should be already but sadly just (mostly) aren’t.

      • Campisi

        I always figured that short-term police service should be either mandatory or heavily encouraged in the same way military service is mandatory or heavily encouraged in northern European countries and elsewhere. If the police were “regular people” (referenced above) that rotated in and out of the position, the purpose of the police as maintenance-workers of law and order would be better upheld. Policing your local community is like cleaning up litter: everyone should take part.

        • http://rider49er.blogspot.com Mark D [EX500]

          That’s actually a brilliant idea. Plus, rapid turnover of personnel would discourage deep corruption.

          I’m not so sure the Left or the Right in country could be too thrilled with the idea of mandatory service of ANY kind. No service, no taxes, no sacrifice; just give me my roads and schools and military and medicare.

  • http://pinkyracer.com pinkyracer

    phew! I was so nervous. Now I can get back to canyon racing in peace. ;-)

  • Sean

    there is a handful of enduro cops in Richmond VA, maybe five that ride XR500′s. They police the parks system, train yards and river areas that can be high crime depending on where you are. There is one cop in particular that can ride well and tries to teach the other guys how to beast up steep inclines and downhills. Ive seen them “training” which usually consist of tearing up stuff we are not allowed to ride.

  • Sean

    and they are assholes

  • Thomas

    The guy who took those pictures must of seen those chicken strips from across the street lol. If CHP think they could put a guy (with no gear) on a r1 and think he could keep up saftley with all those guys at mullholland drive smh no way. Hope this guy doesnt get hurt to bad wit no gear on.