CONCORD, N.C. -- Jimmie Johnson will pay tribute to Late Model driver Shawn Balluzzo during Wednesday's all-star events with a special decal on his No. 48 Ally Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 1LE.
A married father of four, Balluzzo, 64, lost his life last Saturday during a race at Langley Speedway in Hampton, Virginia. His tragic passing hit home for No. 48 crew chief Cliff Daniels, who called Balluzzo a mentor and friend.
Daniels, who raced at the same Virginia short tracks as Balluzzo during his early years, wanted to do something to honor his friend. Balluzzo's car number also was 48, making the tribute even more meaningful.
"It's special to carry Shawn's number (No. 48) on the car with us here for the All-Star race to honor and remember him," Daniels said. "Shawn influenced my early racing career and I have always admired the champion, racer and family man that he was.
"My heart goes out to his wife, Terri, his family, and the entire racing community at Langley Speedway. I hope everyone smiles when they see his number on our No. 48 Ally Chevrolet racing around Bristol under the lights."
Fans can see the decal toward the rear panel of the No. 48 Chevy as Johnson looks to snag his fifth All-Star Race victory. The events will begin Wednesday night at 7 p.m. ET with the Open, then follow up with the All-Star Race at 8:30 p.m. ET. Both races will be on FOX Sports 1, MRN Radio and SiriusXM channel 90.