Thunder Mountain’s Racing for Friends with Cancer event raises $6K

Ricky Alverado of Delta did more than win a couple of auto races. He had his head shaved in support of other drivers.

Alverado won the IMCA Modified Class race Friday night during the Racing for Friends with Cancer event at Thunder Mountain Raceway. Alverado, track owner Gary Nelson, and three others had their heads shaved during the intermission to show support for fellow Western Slope oval-track race car drivers John Stephenson and Doug Tiffany, who have cancer.

Thunder Mountain Raceway raised $6,100 in its Racing for Friends with Cancer event through a bake sale and silent auction, according to a news release from the track. It will continue to sell window stickers and awareness bracelets through the season as part of its fundraiser.

Track officials hope to raise $10,000 for Stephenson and Tiffany. They set up an online donation through

Stephenson, of Grand Junction, was diagnosed with acute myeloid leukemia, a form of blood cancer, in November 2006 and has since been diagnosed with squamous cell carcinoma, an aggressive form of skin cancer.

Tiffany, 53, of Delta, was recently diagnosed with stage 3 colon cancer. He underwent surgery in February and is going through chemotherapy.

Both are longtime drivers at the Olathe track. Stephenson competed in the Sports Modified Class. Tiffany has won several track championships and took second place in Friday’s Dwarf Class race.

Rory Mortsensen finished first ahead of Tiffany in Friday’s race, then won Saturday’s race.

Friday’s other winners were Sid Tenney (Hobby Stock), Rick Davis (Lightning Sprint), Alverado (Modified) and John Young (Sport Mod).

Saturday’s winners were Cliff Cooper (Hobby Stock), Deneen LeTurgez (Lightning Sprint), Alverado (Modified) and Scott Aibner (Sport Mod).

Thunder Mountain Raceway holds races nearly every Saturday night. The track is located at 59039 Amber Road, off U.S. Highway 50, south of the Delta/Montrose county line.


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