Angie Mindus/Tribune file photo Thunder Mountain Speedway will slam into gear this Saturday, with racing beginning at 6 p.m., with its season opener as it celebrates 60 years of racing in Williams Lake.

Thunder Mountain celebrating 60 years

Thunder Mountain Speedway is celebrating its diamond anniversary this season.

Thunder Mountain Speedway is celebrating its diamond anniversary this season.

The speedway will open its 60th year of racing this Saturday, June 17 when it hosts its season opener at the local race track, located north of Williams Lake off Highway 20.

“It’s just awesome,” said TMS president Bob Lowen. “We’re really excited about it.”

Bone stocks, pro minis and street stocks — that latter class now being sponsored by Williams Lake Forestry/NAPA Auto Parts — will all be in action.

Lowen said there’s extra incentive for drivers to race this weekend, as it’s a bonus points weekend.

“There’s lots of guys that are ready and some that are still getting their cars worked on,” he said of how many drivers will be ready to race.

Some local drivers to watch out for Saturday will be the father and son team of Arnie and Donny Kunka.

“They both just did a whole pile of work on their car and they haven’t raced them yet in preparation for Stampede weekend,” he said.

Darren Bailey of Williams Lake will also be in action, along with Darren Lemky of the lakecity.

“He’s been working hard on his car,” Lowen said.

TMS volunteers, executive and drivers have been busy this week getting the track in racing shape with work bees Wednesday and again this evening.

“We’re just finishing everything off up there,” Lowen said. “Some guys will be at the track practicing too. I know guys are keen to get in some laps.”

Of the track’s 60-year, illustrious history, Lowen said everyone is excited for a great season of racing.

“It’s going to be an awesome season celebrating our 60 years along with Canada’s 150th year.”

Racing gets underway at 5 p.m. with qualifying laps, before the season opener gets underway at 6 p.m.