Knaus named crew chief of the race

Chad Knaus, crew chief of the No. 48 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet of driver Jimmie Johnson, has been named the Wypall Wipers crew chief of the race for Sunday’s Pepsi 500 at the Auto Club Speedway in California.

The team started from the pole and led 228 of 250 laps in the NASCAR Sprint Cup race.

Knaus worked to adjust the car throughout the race, which started in daylight and ended at night.

“We found a direction with some tire pressure that worked, but it was just an awesome car all night long," Johnson said. “These guys [and Chad] were put under a different form of pressure, being up there with a lot to lose. It was good for them."

Knaus opted for four times instead of two on the final pit stop, a call that helped Johnson move back into the lead for the final time and net his third win of the season.

“The driver/crew chief communication level and confidence in one another is what carries performance up a bit higher," Knaus said.

The 2008 Wypall Wipers Crew Chief Challenge is a season-long contest to determine the best crew chiefs in the NASCAR Sprint Cup garage. It isn’t necessarily the crew chief who goes to victory lane, but the crew chief who makes the biggest difference for his team.

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