Knaus violation surprises NASCAR President Mike Helton
Knaus caught trying to cheat again
NASCAR President Mike Helton said Hendrick Motorsports crew chief Chad Knaus likely will be penalized for the illegal C-posts found on Jimmie Johnson’s Daytona 500 car Friday but stopped short of saying Knaus’ previous history would be considered when determining the penalty.
Johnson’s car failed pre-practice inspection at Daytona International Speedway Friday and NASCAR confiscated the C-posts because they had been modified outside of NASCAR specifications. The team replaced the C-posts and practiced the car Saturday as scheduled.
Helton said there is a “high likelihood” of Knaus being penalized.
“It fits in the category of prerace inspection issues that we’ve had in the past,” Helton said Saturday morning. “It will warrant a reaction from us more so than what you’ve seen already, … more than what we’ve done so far.”
NASCAR has suspended Knaus twice. He was suspended after Daytona 500 qualifying in 2006 and ejected for the remainder of Speedweeks. He was suspended again in 2007 for a body violation found during opening-day inspection at Infineon Raceway. Knaus remained at the track for the race at Infineon but then faced a six-week suspension.
Last year, altered windshields cost Michael Waltrip Racing drivers 25 points and the crew chiefs were suspended for four weeks and fined $50,000.
Would Knaus’ previous history be taken into consideration when penalties are imposed?
“It certainly makes you scratch your head,” Helton said. “What we’ve learned over time is to, in the heat of the battle, try to accomplish what we immediately are after, which is to get all the cars inspected and get them on the race track and then sit back and kind of digest it all.
“But you do kind of scratch your head on a name that reoccurs.” Scenedaily.com
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