Much Ado About A Wheel Spacer – Chad Knaus Summoned To NASCAR Hauler

By Reid Spencer
NASCAR Wire Service

NASCAR summoned Jimmie Johnson’s crew chief, Chad Knaus, to the sanctioning body’s transporter after the race to discuss what NASCAR termed a “failure to obey a NASCAR directive” during Sunday’s Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway.

But after the race, NASCAR Senior Vice President of Competition and Racing Development Robin Pemberton said the issue was a small matter and had been put to rest.

With Johnson having driven a stint with a loose wheel, Knaus told his crew to put a spacer on the wheel in question, without first asking a NASCAR official for permission. Over the official’s objections, the No. 48 crew put the spacer on the wheel, earning the summons to the hauler.

“We just had a discussion on pit road between our official and Chad, and really it was just to discuss it, what they tried to do, and that’s it, really,” Pemberton said. “It was really not a big deal. We were just trying to clarify what went on, that’s all.”

Pemberton said no penalties would be forthcoming.

“No, it’s so far under that it’s ridiculous,” Pemberton said. “We’re good.”

News that Knaus had been called to the hauler spread quickly on social media, but Johnson had a brisk reply for those questioning Knaus’ motives.

“FYI: CK put a wheel spacer on because of a loose wheel,” Johnson posted on his Twitter account. “That destroys the threads on the studs & won’t let the wheel tighten up #ChillHaters”