Thunder Mountain Speedway’s Day of Destruction on Saturday definitely lived up to its name.
“The spectator area was packed with so many fans that it looked like a Stampede weekend-sized crowd,” said Tim Westwick, president of TMS. “The rumours of a popular TV show filming at the track may have played a key role in the sellout crowd.”
The show, of course, was Pioneer Log Homes’ Timber Kings, who entered a station wagon into the hit to pass and was pitted by Peter, Danielle, Shaun, Duane and Brad from B&J Trucking. The wagon was piloted by John Haynes and, after a spectacular crash into a 21-foot ski boat, it burst into flames.
“All drivers involved were unharmed and they ended up coming home with a top-five position,” Westwick said. “We’d also like to thank the Pioneer crew for the donation of a signed custom-built Timber Kings log bench that was raffled off and won by local youngster, Cody Hurren.”
Gordon Bettles finished first in the hit to pass with his father, Brian Bettles, taking second place. Quesnel’s Jason Howlett grabbed the third position.
“A huge thank you to Brian from Downtown Towing and Cariboo Towing for putting up an additional $1,500 in hit to pass prize money, as well as to Wyatt and Brad Bednarz from B&J Trucking and Organized Chrome for adding $1,000 to the final prize pot,” Westwick said. “All drivers put on a great trailer and boat race that fans will remember for years to come.”
In the local championship event it was a nail biter down to each final main event in all three classes.
Quesnel’s Terry Braman took the Bone Stock Mini main event and was tied with Williams Lake’s Shawn Knott going into Saturday’s race. Knott kept pace by grabbing the fast time of the day, so it came down to just three points between the two rivals.
Champions from each division will be announced at TMS’s year-end banquet on Oct. 18.
In the Pro Mini class it was Allen Roberts winning the main event by narrowly beating out his uncle, Tim Roberts, and close opponent, Marius Dunford.
Roberts had a two-point advantage but Tim claimed the ‘A’ dash and the heat with Dunford collecting the fast time.
“This championship battle came down to a few points and will be announced at the banquet, as well,” Westwick said.
In the Street Stock class three drivers were making a run for the title with John Plumb only three points ahead of his rival and friend, Arnie Kunka, for the top spot entering the race meet, while Westwick solidly held down the third position.
Arnie took fast time, but Plumb answered back by winning the ‘A’ dash. Westwick, not to be outdone, made a last-lap pass on the outside of both Plumb and racing legend Shuster Johnson to take the ‘A’ heat.
The main event saw Kunka take the checkered flag with Plumb close behind in second place, while Westwick was caught up in a crash that saw veteran Haynes and youngster Donny Kunka tangle and enter the wall hard in turn three.
Donny was treated by volunteer paramedics at the track and later at hospital for precautionary measures and was released with a clean bill of health.
The Street Stock championship was decided by a mere two points and the winner will be announced at the October banquet.
“I’d like to thank all the fans, local sponsors, volunteers and drivers for what was one of the best race seasons in recent TMS history,” Westwick said. “Record-breaking attendance, a vast increase in local race car counts and a renewed commitment from several local businesses and supporters made for a great 2014 race season.”
Tickets for the upcoming 57th annual AGM and awards banquet will soon be available at the Hobbit House or from any TMS executive member.