Established in 2016, the Brian Lunniss Lifetime Achievement Award will be presented to Ron Malec, car chief of the No. 48 Lowe’s Chevrolet team for Hendrick Motorsports on Monster Energy NASCAR All-Star Race weekend.
The Brian Lunniss Lifetime Achievement Award is dedicated to the hardest-working hands in racing – the unsung heroes of motorsports – those who possess exceptional drive and inspire the team to win. The Lunniss Award is reserved for mechanics in motorsports who demonstrate remarkable achievements during their career.
Malec was chosen as this year’s recipient in recognition of his outstanding achievements as a car chief in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series. Malec is the second individual to be recognized. The inaugural award, presented in 2016, was given to Brian Lunniss himself.
“He is a guy who wants to go out there and work and he doesn’t pull punches and he doesn’t hold grudges,” said Chad Knaus, crew chief of the No.48. “If you’re in a situation where you need to give somebody the ball, he’s the guy you’re giving it to.”
Malec’s passion for racing took form during his childhood. He and his brother RJ built and raced anything they could get parts for at the local junkyard growing up as kids. Many would say Ron Malec was destined to be the car chief of the No.48 with seven-time premier series champion driver Jimmie Johnson, and few would disagree that there’s a special connection unlike any other in the sport.
Johnson shared his sentiments regarding Malec, stating, “Ron pursued this lifestyle out of his heart not because it can lead to something or lead to fame or lead to championship moments. Since I’ve been racing a full-time schedule on the asphalt, Ron has been my head wrench – if you will – on all of my racecars.”
Ron Malec will receive the award in front of his teammates, family and friends at a brunch on Saturday, May 20 at Hendrick Motorsports in Concord, North Carolina.