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Sam Belnavis, the previous Chief Variety Officer and Proprietor-Designate for Roush Fenway Racing and a motorsports pioneer, died Wednesday.
Belnavis was a trailblazer as a Black normal supervisor and group proprietor in NASCAR. He launched the Nationwide Guard as a sponsor of his group, BelCar Racing, with crew chief Travis Carter and driver Todd Bodine.
Previous to that, Belnavis had joined the Miller Brewing Firm within the late Nineteen Seventies and managed the sports activities advertising division. He broke into NASCAR when he signed driver Bobby Allison to a Miller Brewing Firm sponsorship contract. Two years later, Allison received the NASCAR Cup Collection championship within the No. 22 Miller Excessive Life Ford.
Upon information of Belnavis’ passing, NASCAR launched this assertion: “We’re saddened by the passing of Sam Belnavis, a real pioneer in motorsports whose tireless work helped foster an inclusive setting all through NASCAR. For greater than 30 years, his efforts as a group proprietor and government, in addition to his work to help the launch of the NASCAR Drive for Variety Program, helped introduce profession alternatives in NASCAR to folks of colour. NASCAR affords its deepest condolences to Sam’s family and friends.”
The Belnavis Collective, NASCAR’s Black Worker Useful resource Group, is called after Mr. Belnavis and can proceed to honor him by means of its mission and targets.