Since 1972, Oregon Motorcycle Road Racing Association has run safe, exciting, and competitive events for motorcycle road racers and their fans. Racers range from club level to professionals with national and international experience. OMRRA operates at Portland International Raceway, a city park and world class racetrack.
A brief OMRRA history:
OMRRA is a 501 (c)(7) non-profit, non-charitable organization. It began, and continues to operate at a professional level with primarily volunteer staff including its Board of Directors, corner workers, scorers, announcers and safety personnel.
The ’70s saw the rise of light, powerful, inexpensive Japanese bikes with questionable handling taking the place of British, Italian, and Spanish machines.
In the late ’70s and early ’80s Japanese machines grew in power and weight, including 4-cylinder 500s, 550s, and 750s. OMRRA teamed Washington and Canadian clubs to promote a regional “Triple Crown” series. While the Triple Crown faded with the loss of Canada’s Westwood track, the “Sounds Of The Past” (SOTP) was formed to carry on regional racing for vintage bikes.
In 1980 the eruption of Mt. St. Helens doused the track in volcanic ash, stopping all racing for a part of the season.
In 1986, Suzuki debuted the GSXR 750. The era of liquid cooling and fully faired .race replica. bikes for the street had begun.
In 1991, Yamaha introduced a new V-twin TZ250, a stepping-stone from club level to national AMA racing. Honda launched the CBR600 F2, an evolution of the Hurricane. The F2 swelled the ranks of 600cc racing to capacity.
In 1994, sidecar racing returned to OMRRA. Now an annual event, the colorful 3-wheel acrobats offer exciting racing, and even more exciting “taxi rides” for spectators at lunch.
In 1995 OMRRA began renting inflated rider protection barriers for turn-9. An already safe track became safer.
In 1999 Suzuki introduced the SV650. The bike swelled the ranks of middleweight and 650 twins classes, filling a hole left when production of the Yamaha FZR400 halted eight years earlier.
The late ’90s and the new millennium saw manufacturers driving down weight, driving up power, and holding the line on price for the traditional 600cc class. They also launched a new breed of lightweight 1000s, able to reach over 180 mph on PIR.s mile-long front straight.
In 2001, OMRRA participated in the phenomenon of Pocketbike racing, sanctioning races in the PIR paddock, as well as at local carting tracks. Eventually, Pocketbike racing spun off as an independent organization. OMRRA maintained the youth connection with an 85cc class on the Big Track.
In 2002, Vintage racing, with a history of camaraderie and friendly club level competition, exploded at OMRRA. The inexpensive Honda late 60.s CB160 was the ride of choice, with LeMans starts and grids as large as 50 bikes on Vintage Day. Magazine coverage included Cycle World, Roadracing World, Bike Magazine and Classic Racer.
In 2007, with help from the Roadracing World Action Fund, OMRRA invested significantly in Air Fence rider impact protection for turns five and nine.
Before the 2008 season PIR was repaved, with new asphalt and minor changes to turns 4 and 7 and new curbing.
In 2010, SuperTeams, a one-hour 2-rider endurance format, replaced OMRRA.s typical 4-hour endurance races. Participation and enthusiasm jumped.
In 2011, OMRRA saw it.s first ever Electric Superbike entry. Michael Czysz proved his Portland-built machine can compete with gas powered SV650s. The Superteams calendar expanded from one event to three.
In 2012, a new race class, the Ninja 250 Cup, was announced. Rules match those at WMRRA, and begin with .no engine modifications allowed.. 10 local racers built bikes the first season. As well, the club hosts TTXGP, an international-level electric motorcycle race, at the June event.
In 2014 OMRRA expanded activities to winter, creating and hosting the Portland Motorcycle Film Festival, a January fundraiser for Air Fence purchase, deployment and maintenance. Saturday and Sunday shows sold out, over $10,000 was raised, while racers dreamed of sunny, warmer days at PIR.
2015 included the largest OMRRA race weekend in memory, when WMRRA joined our September event and included PIR in their annual championship. Over 230 racers competed, Turn 1 traffic got congested, and the Pacific Northwest race community revved its motors in unison.
The Oregon Motorcycle Road Racing Association is a 501(c)(7) non-profit organization formed in 1972 whose primary purpose is to organize successful motorcycle road races at Portland International Raceway, or any other venue that becomes available and is feasible in the state of Oregon.
Its rules are promulgated in the interest of safety, fairness and enjoyable racing.
The Association provides a class and championship structure generally reflective of those in other motorcycle race organizations, with the intent that no competitor has unfair advantage with regard to machinery.
The Association recognizes that, with the rapid evolution of contemporary technology, these rules may need yearly modification to do so.
The Association will only prosper if the varied interests of riders, volunteers, spectators and PIR management are taken into account. It is therefore the duty of the Association to outline clear processes, guidelines, constraints and consequences for club members, crew, volunteers, officials and spectators.