Ride of The Century Rider Blames Police for Chaos on Streets; "They Cannot Stop The Ride"

ride-of-century-stl.jpg
Brock Roseberry (syntheticaperture)
What should you do if your car is suddenly surrounded on the highway by a mob of roaring street bikes and crotch-rockets?

"Stay in your lane," urged Shane Harper, who will be attending his fifth Ride of the Century this weekend along with 3,000 riders from St. Louis and across the country. "Maintain your speed, and we will get around you." He and two other riders attended a police press conference yesterday to criticize and question the tactics that police say are designed only to target lawbreaking motorcyclists.

"They cannot stop the ride," Harper said. "We're still going to make this happen."

But Harper's confidence doesn't match the dismal outlook expressed by one of the cofounders of Streetfighterz, the five-member St. Louis-based motorcycle stunting group that founded Ride of the Century more than a decade ago. Adam (who asked his last name not be printed) told Daily RFT earlier this week that the current format of Ride of the Century "has seen its final days" because of police pressure on the riders.

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Danny Wicentowski
Captain Ronald Johnson of the Missouri State Highway Patrol.

Whether the event's riders are actually willing to change remains to be seen, but police demonstrated yesterday that they've been thinking seriously about how to make life difficult for those brave (or crazy) enough to pull off stunts like this. Or this. Definitely this.

"For those who are here for the Ride of the Century, I want you to have an enjoyable time as long as you obey the laws of Missouri," Captain Ronald Johnson, commanding officer of Troop C of the Missouri State Highway Patrol, said in his opening remarks. "If you do not obey the laws of Missouri, I guarantee you will not have an enjoyable time."

And nothing makes time less enjoyable than involving your insurance company. For the second year, cited or ticketed motorcyclists can expect their insurance providers to receive a sheet of paper on police stationary informing them that their client is up to some highly risky behavior.

See also: Could 2013 Be Final Ride of The Century in St. Louis?

Holding up an example of one of these notices, St. Louis County Police Chief Tim Fitch said many riders don't fear getting caught since a lawyer can usually reduce the traffic violation in court. Basically, sending insurance companies these notices tilts the balance back in law enforcement's favor, since getting caught pulling stunts during Ride of the Century now could pose additional -- and serious -- financial consequences for a rider's insurance.

"We're not saying they're guilty of a crime," Fitch said. "We're just bringing it to their [insurance company's] attention and telling them that we have issued this citation."

Fitch's distinction was lost on Jason Cadell, who will be attending his first Ride of the Century this weekend, who argued that "riders are going to be prosecuted through the insurance company. [The police] are circumventing due process."

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Danny Wicentowski
Captain Ronald Johnson and motorcyclist Jason Cadell argue about the methods employed by police during Ride of the Century.

Continue for more on this year's controversy and the official Ride of the Century statement.

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40 comments
jake
jake

I don't ride but i do find it funny that almost everyone here automatically says a motorcyclist is a criminal, punk, or a reckless motorist. That's kind of unfair to the riders who do obey the law i mean if they exist right? And also how people act like motorcyclists don't have just as much right to be on the road as a car owner/operator 

luvblueshockey
luvblueshockey

WAAAAAAAAAAA! We plan on invading your city and driving like assholes and breaking the law and now we're crying because the cops are doing their jobs!!! The majority of the bikers that come are idiots. I wish more would have been arrested. Sad that three people died, but maybe, just maybe, had they been not driving like idiots they could have enjoyed the rest of their lives. 

Chris Wheeler
Chris Wheeler

fuck all of these riders. they plug up the hwy with their brazen behavior and intimidate drivers intentionally. i laugh hard at them when they are unfairly prosecuted and or not given due process.

Michael Mahler
Michael Mahler

Just a matter of time before one of them flips over in traffic and causes a wreck.

trry96
trry96

All of these riders are full of shit.  I've heard them say several times (including in the post yesterday) that 90% of the riders are respectful.  I live in the city and I have access to youtube...you're not fooling anyone.  There was a video of a rider last year that stood up on the seat at interstate speeds, turned backwards while standing up, took out their cellphone, accessed facebook, recorded a 30 second video while other bikers got close and high fived, and posted (all while facing the wrong direction on an interstate highway with no hands on the controls).  It's clear that the police struggle to control such a large group of riders who can easily outrun them.  Why doesn't SLPD hire one undercover officer with a go pro camera to videotape the event and send tickets/arrest warrants in the mail?  Ticket half of those motherfuckers and see if they come back next year.

Blake Harris
Blake Harris

How many horrible accidents happened last year for the law to crack down, surely someone must have died. Of course I can't think of any

Ksmith Wash
Ksmith Wash

Dear ST. Louis Police Departments: TRY FIGHTING CRIME AND STOP KIDS FROM DYING OUR CITY VS HARASSING Streetfighterz

Andrew D'Angelo
Andrew D'Angelo

Can't stop the ride? Um yes they can if its on public roadways and you are considered to be "recklessly endangering the safety of the public at-large". Deal with it punks! Go over to Gateway Int'l Raceway and ride all day long until you drop. But stay off our taxpayer-paid roadways (something some of you don't do probably...pay taxes, that is).

bthewade
bthewade

Just dont show them your insurance car . Game biker

Lynn Mangan Trask
Lynn Mangan Trask

If they do this ride once a year, why do they call it Ride of the Century? JS!!

wonderdude
wonderdude

Let's crack down on those bikers! That'll solve the problem of all the shootings, stabbings and burglaries every damn day in the city.

boinkz01
boinkz01

why don't these cocps just help the ride, block intersections and explain to the public who drive drunk, or text in their cars and trucks, hey they are here for this weekend, just chill and enjoy the show! they spend money and support your community, and make it a positive instead of all the negative bullshit police state! there are already a few stories how missouri cocps over abusing their power, step up, and be helpful!

kangoids
kangoids topcommenter

Some numbskull popped a long wheelie right in front of me last week on Hampton Ave. 

Heavy traffic, blind curve, bad situation.

I guess he was practicing for the upcoming event...

One twitch, one swerve by a distracted driver and he would have been dead. 

SupaChoppa
SupaChoppa

I'm a stunt rider.  I did the ride of the century during the early days.  It has turned into something I could never agree with.  No one's saying you can't ride, or do stunts, but you can't take over a whole fucking highway.  I've done stupid shit on the road, but I always made sure that my dumb shit was always on me, never putting other drivers or bystanders at risk.

There is no way hundreds or thousands of bikes doing crazy shit in multiple lanes was safe, is safe, or will ever be safe.  Sorry Shane.  Dude...it's time to take the show off the road.  The heat is only gonna get worse.

jaco1175
jaco1175 topcommenter

"This was the hardest decision I've had to make in five years, to cancel something that was supposed to be a lot of fun," Terry MacCauley, general sales manager of the dealership, told Daily RFT. "The only reason was the pressure of law enforcement." 

His event would keep them off the highways? Bullshit. Terry is just pissed because he is going to lose a lot of money . Last year the ignorant cockhole posted shit on facebook telling these fuckwads to claim he was servicing their illegal bikes to dispute their tickets. Asshat. His is just as big a part of this sack of douchebaggery as the fuckheads with the rice burners, Fuck all of them.

Andy Sims
Andy Sims

I love the idea of ratting them out to their insurance companies. Performing stunts or racing is not covered under regular auto or motorcycle policies, nor is an accident incurred while breaking the law, so if they do get in an accident and make a claim, it's fraud. They can cry foul all they want, but fraud is fraud, dickheads.

Charlie Cochran
Charlie Cochran

My Mom is older but still a good driver, she got surrounded last year by these guys and nearly ran her car off the road, and not into a ditch. Cool? No. Seriously dangerous..can't they go somewhere else?? I guess someone has to die before they learn

Steve Dixon
Steve Dixon

Police aren't looking to stop law-abiding citizens. What they are looking to stop is the idiots who pop wheelies while doing 80mph down the freeway. Take it to GateWay and get it out of your system. Busy highways and streets are no place for those antics.

Wil Grundon
Wil Grundon

Except when one of these idiots crashes into somebody else who isn't acting like a brain donor and kills them, too. I don't see any problem with the cops letting the insurance companies know what's going on. It's part of the contract you sign when you buy insurance.

ut_4_me
ut_4_me

Funniest quote of the article "[The police] are circumventing due process."   Not very funny when the "opposition" starts flouting the law right back in your face, is it?  All the police will be doing is notifying your insurance you were cited.   If your insurance rates go up it is simply a bi-product of your being cited for riding in a reckless manner, not a legal punishment for being found guilty.

Mark Brennan
Mark Brennan

I'm starting to think that the participants and organizers are just very dim people. Let them ride however they choose, and let natural selection take over.

MeStLouis1977
MeStLouis1977

@luvblueshockey Really?!  Most of the ones I met were nice as hell.  The (illegal) checkpoint) I was caught up in on Sunday when I was in the city enjoying the parked bikes was crazy.  No facilities, nothing to drink, law abiding yet still stuck in a 2hr line only to be told by the "officer" I was good to go without looking at my license, insurance or anything else.?!?!  WTF man, the Constitution and courts prohibit such things.  But as long as you weren't apart of it you're good with it.  Remember that when you are the last one the come for for "the safety of others" yet no one is around to help

asdfg
asdfg

@Chris Wheeler

and we will laugh when a cop sticks his baton up your ass for fun... lol it will be good times for all.


MeStLouis1977
MeStLouis1977

@trry96 The courts have ruled against things like that numerous times is why.  Turn of Big Brother and Survivor and tune into the law and real news for a change maybe.  

cbccadet2002
cbccadet2002

@wonderdude I'm wondering what that has to do with anything dude? Actually if there wasn't any "difficulty" then peeps would join everyone else that quite riding, Whats the point at all? Funny how someone can control one wheel, but its so difficult for a motherfucker to put their phone down and drive the damn car. Seems u my friend are just jealous and seek attention through this "ghetto activity" remark. pull ur head out yo ass wonderboy. its funny how the police decide to counter something so desperately, I say all ride this year in nothing but a tube sock and american flag painted on their chest. Then you can help all the other peeps that are in danger solely from the pigs. Do  the damn thing, ride it like ya stole it. haha. 


ut_4_me
ut_4_me

@boinkz01 Love it when the riders coming to ROC get all bent out of shape when they feel their rights are being trampled.  Freedom is a much-abused word. There are essential freedoms - free speech, free press, habeas corpus, religion, the ballot, to name a few - that are worth fighting for. Then there's simply foolish behavior you're used to getting away with.

cbccadet2002
cbccadet2002

@SupaChoppa i agree with ya there. I'm a firm believer in "Only ride along if you can make the cut." If not, get back in the lot. 


MeStLouis1977
MeStLouis1977

@jaco1175 No Jaco, fuck you, seems all you know is language you wouldn't use around work, your parents or kids.  Gain a little substance in your life and learn both sides of a story, but you are a sheeple and go along with what the media tells you.  Maybe I could count you in the list of "drunk drivers" but since you've never been caught you aren't.  

cbccadet2002
cbccadet2002

@ut_4_me Isn't in all reality Illegal for them to inform insurance, unless they are questioned directly? I mean we sign the po po's checks.  

luvblueshockey
luvblueshockey

@MeStLouis1977 @luvblueshockey So??? The cops are just suppose to ignore the hazard the majority of these bikers cause? Sorry, but riding wheelies and shutting down  highways is not cool.  LOL @ 'illegal checkpoint'. What a maroon! 

wonderdude
wonderdude

@cbccadet2002 
 I was being sarcastic. 

FWIW, when I said "city," I meant  the metro area. However, this issue really is more about the county and state fuzz. The city cops would probably be easier to deal with, since they recently allowed (with escorts, and everything) hundreds of organized bikers to ride through town while intentionally breaking the laws (riding buck naked).

MeStLouis1977
MeStLouis1977

@jaco1175 @boinkz01 Really Jaco?!  A dead human?!?!? Maybe you are the reason this country is in the shape it is.  Care only about yourself a little more.  I agree with Boinkz, if the city embraced it, had a venue like they did in Columbia, Il for the stunts maybe this city could attract more things.  I saw they same things during Gumball and Gold Rush, the cops out to get them just because.  And yet we wonder why we are in the state we are.

ut_4_me
ut_4_me

@cbccadet2002 It's not illegal at all to voluntarily give an insurance company information that is available to the general public on request.  What does who signs anyone's check have to do with this?   Are you trying to make the no harm, no foul argument here?

MeStLouis1977
MeStLouis1977

@cbccadet2002 @ut_4_me So when you drive above the speed limit, change lanes without a signal, roll a stop sign...maybe we should inform your insurance as well without being proven guilty in a court of law as per the Constitution right?  When the glove fits you just as right, will you stuill agree it's fair and legal or will you go running to the media about it?

cbccadet2002
cbccadet2002

 @ut_4_me not in the least bit. Gotta pay the cost to ur actions. It's more or less a cheap shot by them bc they are cornered. They will ticket whoever they get to stop. It could be a innocent rider that takes the fall. Or anything they want to pin ya for. Change lanes and careless and imprudent. Ur word against theirs. Either way they receive the revenue for the infraction, not my fault the system is so corrupt that it turns into a "parking in a no parking zone." insurance companies are making money regardless. If it gets all that serious. Wont it just lead people towards canning the shit all together? How bout they do it differently. Every rider pays a set fee to join in the environment just once a year. And Provide a designated area of no traffic? I personally try to steer away from this crowd bc of the numbers. But if i wanted to stand it up, I'll stand it up. Thats just the reality of this culture. But im not restricting anyones driving ability. Nor harming their safety. Its usually the drivers with the ego trip that rages for no reason but simple jealousy or lack of a life. Cant side with either party, but thats exceeding one's ability an throw a low blow to get leverage. I pay for mistakes every time, But they are the one's that allow the citation reductions in the end. They got their revenue.  That's about as far as any of em cared to take company policy. If they truely gave a fuck, they would put an end to end through their ability they see fit to protect the people. Including force. Seems like thats the secret weapon to diminish any resistance from the population. Been done before. 

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