17 June, 2010
Bullock assembled the team on the Bondurant road course. Each member was assigned a Crown Victoria patrol car and each lapped the track in the opposite direction from the previous day's exercises, the purpose of which was to provide the team the opportunity to negotiate an unfamiliar course at high speed. Periodically, Bullock and Dunham pursued members of the team in a threatening manner in an attempt to distract and unsettle them.
14. The team members regrouped on the pad, and Bullock drilled them on reverse and forward 180-degree turning exercises, instructing them to perform the turns in a variety of combinations.
15. Bullock demonstrated how to clear a vehicle obstructing one's path while causing minimal damage to the vehicle being driven. Striking the obstructing vehicle at either the front or rear axle in a path aligned with the frame of the driven vehicle will easily push the obstruction out of the desired path. Because the frame (or subframe area of a unitized-body design) is the strongest part of a vehicle, the driven vehicle is not likely to suffer damage that would neutralize it.
16. The team practiced this exercise using vehicles the school purchased from a salvage yard.
17. Training concluded with one more PIT maneuver drill. Instructor Will Parker drove the suspect vehicle. Parker (possible alias: Malibu's Most Wanted) menaced the team with verbal taunting and by wearing his ball cap backward and low on his forehead.
18. Having established probable cause, the team quickly neutralized Parker in the suspect vehicle.
The course officially concluded with a brief recognition ceremony. Subject departed for PHX airport.
With just a three-to-one instructor-to-student ratio, we got plenty of personalized and intensive training. No, we didn't get to drive Bondurant's Chevrolet Corvettes and Formula Mazdas on the road course like the Grand Prix students get to do, but we got to slide, spin, and track-flog some big American sedans, and in our estimation, that was way more fun. Of all the classes the Bondurant School has to offer, this was our hands-down favorite.
Finally, while this is presented as a whimsical accounting of the lessons taught in the Executive Protection class, we must acknowledge that, though our daily commute in the traffic-choked and driver-distracted streets of Los Angeles County may seem life-threatening at times, there are people in parts of the world who need and use these skills on a day-to-day basis while working to keep us all safe. We wish to thank you for what you do.
Learn More: The Bob Bondurant School of Performance Driving; Chandler, AZ; 800/842-7223; Bondurant.com