RIP Tony Lentino

Super Black Racing is deeply saddened to confirm the death of team founder and owner, Tony Lentino who passed away peacefully Today at his home in Wellsford, New Zealand 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 Virgin Australia Supercars Championship for the last two seasons after making a wildcard debut at Bathurst in 2014.

The proud Kiwi created the team to give up-and-coming New Zealand racing drivers something to aspire to and has seen rising stars Chris Pither, Andre Heimgartner, Ant Pedersen and Richie Stanaway all drive the team’s #111 entry.

Super Black Racing’s Operations Manager, Greg Hahn paid tribute to Lentino and his legacy. “It is with great sadness we confirm the passing of our owner and founder, Tony Lentino,” Hahn said.

“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 north of Auckland 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, forty two, leaves behind his wife Emily and two daughters, Izabella and Sofia . RIP Tony

Supercars,
Chris Pither

Whaleoil, and indeed the country has benefited from Tony Lentino in ways that aren’t publicly acknowledged.

The country first became aware of Tony as he started helping Kim Dotcom.  Tony loves the underdog, and after Dotcom’s home was raided in such a ridiculous manner, all of Dotcom’s funds were frozen.  Dotcom couldn’t pay the rent.  Tony, with a heart of gold, stepped in and paid the Dotcom’s rent for a while.

It is because of this association with Kim Dotcom that people haven’t been able to understand his place.   Why would Whaleoil and associated people be so nice about a man that makes such poor friends?

As time progressed, Tony came to discover the true nature of Kim Dotcom and backed out.  But by then he had been close enough and involved enough to know a lot about Dotcom’s business and personal relationships.

A lot of Whaleoil’s battle to get the truth out about Kim Dotcom was related to Tony, some of it even directly.  In fact, if it wasn’t for Tony Lentino, the constant release of damaging information on Whaleoil may not have made it to the main stream media, and we may have been suffering a Left wing coalition government right now.

Tony saw how Dotcom and the media worked together to subvert an election, and realised it was close to corruption.  The media, who would normally be expected to expose such cosy deals were up to their eyeballs in trying to change the government.  This led to Tony being one of the founders in Freed Media – an attempt to set up a media company that would return to holding people’s feet to the fire, no matter the source of the story.

This progressed well, and people were interviewed all over the country for positions within Freed.

And then, Tony got the news he had cancer.

Tony Lentino was a man who just couldn’t help get in behind the underdog.

Clearly the Freed people understood that his focus had to shift to trying to survive and his family alone.  He withdrew from Freed for one reason only and that was to focus on his health.  This is the only reason Freed didn’t happen, back then.

“If only” is probably what many people associated with Tony will be thinking today.

“If only” I had never met Tony Lentino, Kim Dotcom will be thinking.  “Maybe I would have a party in government by now”.

“If only” the news about Tony’s health had come later, Freed people will be thinking.  “Maybe we would be having a thriving media company kicking ass by now”.

But most importantly, “If only” his family will be thinking.  “If only he could have seen his children grow up and take the Lentino values to the world”.

Most people won’t know who Tony Lentino is.   But you probably have a Key-led government because of him.

Rest in Peace Tony
The Whaleoil Crew

 

UPDATE, for the record

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