Blog Entry

Chad Knaus surprised by penalties

Posted on: March 2, 2012 11:41 am
Edited on: March 2, 2012 11:48 am
By Pete Pistone

  Jimmie Johnson (L) Talks
(Knaus is with Johnson and the 48 team this week after the Daytona penalties until the appeal is heard)

Chad Knaus
maintained his innocence regarding the No. 48 Lowe's Chevrolet failing pre-Daytona inspection and completely surprised by the penalty handed down by NASCAR in the aftermath.

Knaus met with the media Friday morning at Phoenix International Raceway and said he's not sure why Jimmie Johnson's car didn't pass inspection and why the subsequent penalties announced by NASCAR were so severe.

"We do everything we can to build the best race cars we possibly can to bring to the racetrack, and that's what we do," said Knaus, who was fined $100,000 and placed on a six race suspension foe the infractions. "Unfortunately, they didn't like something and we've got to address that." 

The parts and pieces in question were the C-Posts of the No. 48 Chevrolet but Knaus says NASCAR inspectors didn't put the car through the inspection templates but rather was pulled out of line and deemed illegal by a visual inspection.

That alone seems to be the sticking point for teamowner Rick Hendrick, who has stated a plan to appeal the penalties, which is why Knaus was allowed to participate in Phoenix this weekend.

"It was just a visual inspection at that point," Knaus said. "We never actually got the opportunity to present that under the templates. So it's unfortunate. There's a bit of subjectiveness to it. That's why we're going through the appeal." 

Johnson and car owner Jeff Gordon also face penalties of 25 driver and owner points respectively, discipline that if it sticks through the appeal process would put the 48 team deep in the hole in the race for the championship early in the season.

“Obviously, I’m deeply saddened of course," Knaus said. "We didn’t expect this.  It’s not the way that we wanted to start off the season.  It is good to have the support of everybody at Hendrick Motorsports.  We will go after this thing, hopefully get it resolved and beaten and go back to business.  Right now we are focused on getting through Phoenix and trying to win this championship this year.” 

Knaus is a many time offender and has been suspended more than a time or two during his tenure with Hendrick. But he's not sure if that past track record played any part in how the sanctioning body viewed this situation.

“I don’t know.  That is difficult for me to say.  You would have to go ask NASCAR about that,” he said.

Knaus is not worried about how this latest example of running afoul of the rules may impact his reputation with fans or inside the garage area. The crew chief is only focused on winning races and getting Johnson back into the title hunt in 2012.

Honestly, I’m here to do the best I can No. 48 team, and that is all that really matters to me," he said.  "As far as my reputation goes, I’m not too concerned about that. What we want to do is go out there and do the best thing we can for Hendrick Motorsports, the best thing for Lowe’s and try to win races and championships.” 

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Since: Feb 22, 2012
Posted on: March 5, 2012 7:04 pm

Chad Knaus surprised by penalties

couldnt agree more ... h
knaus is a cheating fraud and its a disgrace helton has stood by and let him get away with murder.. it ruins the integrity of the sport.. be careful, jimmy is pistones golden by, hence the low score you got... haha  no matter if it was the truth or not.....

Since: Jan 2, 2012
Posted on: March 5, 2012 7:03 am

Chad Knaus surprised by penalties

this suspension is fine, the points are fine. remember, the point differential is only one point per position. it will take awhile to climb the standings.  even with the bnus points, remember, other drivers also get those same bonus points as well.  next time this happens, the driver needs to be suspended also.  

Since: Mar 4, 2012
Posted on: March 4, 2012 12:49 pm

Chad Knaus surprised by penalties

what's this make 5 times he has been caught nascar becoming like major league baseball with cheaters Chad should change is name to barry bonds sad part Mike Helton and Nascar let him win 5 Champships by cheating

Since: Sep 25, 2011
Posted on: March 4, 2012 12:55 am

Chad Knaus surprised by penalties

Surprised???.....Yea me too.....I woulda thought nascar would invite him for a night out with some cheeseburgers.....Knaus's penalty is well deserved but
because he's a repeater I also think the -25 pts to the team is a little mild....How bout -50 and -75 if it happens again this year or the next....-25 & Knaus absent for 6 races will not affect this team in anyway so quit crying! 

Since: Jan 24, 2007
Posted on: March 3, 2012 8:13 pm

Chad Knaus surprised by penalties

Way to many soap box preachers here. Nascar was founded by a bunch of law breaking bootleggers. Haters beware it will not end with Knaus. He gets paid to push the envelope and make HMS money, bottom line. Working the gray areas of the rules is what he does best, and every now and then he's gonna step over line. If the Boss had a problem with it he'd put his foot down. The whiners call it cheating, I call it doing what it takes to win. You might not like, but it's been going on since the inception of Nascar, and will continue long after we're gone.

Since: Sep 18, 2011
Posted on: March 3, 2012 2:55 pm

Chad Knaus surprised by penalties

So who will run the tean if Knaus is suspended?  

Since: Jan 4, 2011
Posted on: March 3, 2012 2:05 pm

Chad Knaus surprised by penalties

I'm sure Knaus is not at all surprised by the penalty.  He's just playing the "pity me" game, in hopes it will get reduced.  I hope that upon review it gets extended.  He is a habitual cheater who is going to keep doing it until the penalty outweighs the possible rewards.  All the cheating makes Johnson and Knaus no better than Sosa and McGwire: cheaters' will always be remembered as cheaters - not champions.  Have some respect for the sport and some dignity for yourself, and knock it off.

Since: Jun 30, 2011
Posted on: March 3, 2012 12:03 pm

Chad Knaus surprised by penalties

Nascar selectively enforces rules.  They always have.  I remember when during the season they required fords to have a higher roof line because one ford was too fast.  Go Chad, go Jimmy, go 48. WeRWine

100% factual! And the funny thing is, Bill Elliot actually went faster when they raised the roof line. That really had to make nascar want to pull their hair out! Here was a car, legal in every way, that was penalized because the gm products (and most of the other Fords) couldn't come close to competing with on the super speedways - very much the same as when nascar instituted the pressure release settings in the cooling systems at 28lbs, thus taking away the advantage the Fords had built through hard work within the rules. However, this instance with the 48 team has to do with the body being outside the realm of specs. A very very big differecne between nascar trying to even the playing field while playing favorites and actually catching a team venturing outside of the rules. I'm not taking away anything from knaus trying to get the most out of his cars. If you're not pushing the envelope, you're not trying hard enough to win.

Since: Oct 3, 2006
Posted on: March 3, 2012 10:12 am

Chad Knaus surprised by penalties

Many teams have had run ins like this and to say they are targeting them and not others is ridiculous. I think they have reason to suspect him because of his history and therefore he should anticipate the scrutiny.

He got caught now deal with it.

Since: Oct 15, 2006
Posted on: March 3, 2012 9:19 am

Chad Knaus surprised by penalties

Nascar selectively enforces rules.  They always have.  I remember when during the season they required fords to have a higher roof line because one ford was too fast.  Go Chad, go Jimmy, go 48.

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