Super Black Racing team founder and owner Tony Lentino died today at his home in Wellsford, following a fifteen month battle with cancer.
Lentino was the driving force behind the creation of the all-Kiwi Supercars team which has competed full-time in the Australia Supercars V8 Championship for the last two seasons after making a wildcard debut at Bathurst in 2014.
The 42-year-old created the team to give up-and-coming New Zealand racing drivers something to aspire to with rising stars Chris Pither, Andre Heimgartner, Ant Pedersen and Richie Stanaway all driving the team's #111 entry.
Super Black Racing's operations manager, Greg Hahn paid tribute to Lentino and his legacy saying: "It is with great sadness we confirm the passing of our owner and founder, Tony Lentino.
"Tony had a dream and took us all on the journey with him. He always wanted for a Pole and a top ten finish and this weekend he got to see it. He will be deeply missed by the team.
"He passed away surrounded by his family at his beloved home of Wellsford following a relatively short but spirited battle with cancer which he fought with all the energy he poured into everything he did.
"Tony was passionate about lots of things in life and while he toughed it out when he was young to establish himself as a very successful businessman, he never forgot where he came from and giving young people a chance, especially Kiwis, was central to the creation of the Super Black Racing team.
"Tony loved nothing more than taking it to the Aussies and having a Supercars team was a great way to mix his passion for his country with his love of motorsport.
"We will race on in memory of Tony but for now our thoughts and support are fully with the young family he so sadly leaves behind."
Lentino leaves behind his wife Emily and two daughters, Izabella and Sofia.