Crew chief Chad Knaus wins ‘Problem Solver of the Race’ Award
Following the race, Johnson’s crew chief, Chad Knaus, received Federal-Mogul Corporation’s MOOG “Problem Solver of the Race” Award. The MOOG Problem Solver award is presented to the crew chief whose car posts the largest increase in average lap speed during the second half of each Sprint Cup event while finishing on the lead lap. Johnson picked up a race-best 0.275-second per lap after Knaus and crew made a series of mid-race adjustments to the No. 48 car’s chassis.
Johnson, mired in 21st at the start and faced with a variety of early-race challenges, eventually passed everyone but race winner Greg Biffle, whose MOOG-equipped Sherwin Williams/3M Ford dominated the final 100 laps. With Biffle’s victory, the MOOG brand remains unbeaten through three Chase events.
“Jimmie just took off after his second pit stop, and then the car kept getting better every time Chad and his team could get their hands on it,” said Federal-Mogul Motorsports Director Tim Nelson. “They struggled in qualifying and lost some spots during the first 50 laps, but the race was on after Chad made some brilliant adjustments.”
As strong as Johnson’s car was over the final 200 laps, Biffle’s Ford was even better, as seen by its 7.6-second margin of victory. Biffle was running third when crew chief Greg Erwin called for a wedge adjustment on lap 187. Within 30 laps Biffle had established an almost insurmountable lead.
The Chase will continue next week with the Pepsi Max 400 at Auto Club Speedway, Fontana, Calif., where Johnson won earlier this year.