Vintage motorcycles roll at CRR's Steel Stampede

Racers young and not so young hit the dirt course

2017 Steel Stampede Vintage...

CROOKED RIVER RANCH, Ore. - With helmets on tight and and their engines revved up, motorcycle racers took to a dirt race course at Crooked River Ranch this weekend. 

The 11th annual Steel Stampede Vintage Motorcycle event featured a variety of riders, from the younger set to one rider who's 78 years old.

The event is one in a series organized by the American Historic Racing Motorcycle Association and featured skill and speed races and a show swap. 

"These are all historical motorcycles, so they're 1974 or older," said Jody LaPora, Crooked River Ranch manager. "There's no new bikes here. They're all old and that is kind of the really nice thing about it."

Lapora said all of the proceeds from the race go to something that benefits the ranch as a whole. Her favorite part is what the event does for the community. 

Event organizer Pete Fisher said racers come from all over the West Coast for this AHRMA regional event. 

"There's several events around the Northwest," Fisher said. "This is about the biggest one in the Northwest, and we have riders here who have come from Canada, Washington, Oregon, Idaho and California.

"They all come here, and we hang out for a couple days and play with motorcycles," he added.

One of the racers, 78-year-old Tommy McFarland, said he has been doing this for over 60 years and continues to participate simply because of how much he loves the sport. He is originally from Northern Ireland and started racing in 1956. 

"Most of the time, if there is somebody ahead of me, I am concentrating on getting past them," McFarland said. "But it's a good ride, and if I won, that's goo. And if I don't, then it's just good to be participating."

McFarland said the course was great to race on and he enjoyed being around all the people at the event. He wants to do it for as long as he can. For now, he will finish with this race and hit the road for the next ride, as will many of the other participants. 

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