By Isaac Gibson

It was heaven for some and hell for others at the inaugural Hell on Wheels flat track motorcycle race Saturday evening at the Fairgrounds in Baker City.

A free event attached to the Hells Canyon Motorcycle Rally, the flat track race attracted about 1,400 spectators with its mix of adrenaline, collisions and lots of dust — in no particular order.

Anyone in town attending the rally was encouraged to race for a chance to win a $500 gift card. The rules were simple — “Run what you brung only.”

For Adam Morris, he brought his 1979 Honda GL 1000, which had been judged best in show earlier that day. Morris, like many of the racers, had never been in a real race before.

“I was thinking I’m here, I might as well,” said Morris, of Seattle. “But yes, I’m really nervous about racing it.”

Before the race began, the participants were given the option of taking a few test laps to get a feel for the course.

But for some riders the practice wasn’t necessary.

Paul Bustamante, for instance, went on to win the second heat of competition without any racing experience, or any practice laps.

“I was like, ‘What’s going on, what am I doing here,’ ” Bustamante said. “But it was fun, it was a good time.”

Morris, however, did practice beforehand, and he fared well in his first heat, qualifying for the semifinals.

Competing alongside him was Markeith Reese, 24, who was riding a Honda CBR 600 that belongs to his friend, James Park, 28.

See more in the July 10, 2017, issue of the Baker City Herald.