NASCAR Suspends Jimmie Johnson's Crew Chief Chad Knaus

Chad Robb@@MrFantasyNASCARCorrespondent IFebruary 29, 2012

CHARLOTTE, NC - OCTOBER 17:  Chad Knaus, crew chief of the #48 Lowe's Chevrolet, talks with his driver Jimmie Johnson during NASCAR Electronic Fuel Injection Testing at Charlotte Motor Speedway on October 17, 2011 in Charlotte, North Carolina.  (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images for NASCAR)
Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

Chad Knaus, the crew chief for five-time NASCAR Sprint Cup champion Jimmie Johnson, was suspended six races for inspection violations made before the Daytona 500.

Knaus will also be fined $100K for the violations. This is not the first time Knaus has been suspended. In 2006, Knaus was suspended for four races.

However, the No. 48 team did not miss a beat. Jimmie Johnson went on to win the Daytona with interim crew chief Darian Grubb.

How will the suspension affect the No. 48 team in the next six weeks?

Hendrick Motorsports is one of the strongest teams in NASCAR. The smaller teams in the sport would be greatly affected by the suspension of a crew chief. Hendrick Motorsports has hundreds of employees. The team will find someone to step in for Knaus, and the No. 48 team should be unaffected.

In January, Knaus skipped the Daytona Thunder testing at Daytona to go on vacation in Africa. The team did not miss a beat. Knaus and Johnson had their arguments last year. It was the first time they did not win the Championship in five years. The break from each other may be good for the No. 48 team.

The NASCAR Sprint Cup Series heads to Phoenix this week. This is one of the best tracks for the No. 48 team. Johnson has won four times at Phoenix and should be strong again this Sunday.

Knaus' suspension is unfortunate for Hendrick Motorsports. The team should be able to work their way through the adversity and continue to be a team to beat in NASCAR.

Follow me on Twitter @HuskerMagic

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