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NASCAR Suspends Knaus, Docks Johnson

| , RacinToday.com Wednesday, February 29 2012

Jimmie Johnson and crew chief Chad Knaus were slapped with penalties on Wednesday. (RacinToday/HHP file photo by Erik J. Perel)

NASCAR has hit the No. 48 Hendrick Motorsports team of Jimmie Johnson with a series of major penalties.

Johnson, a five-time Sprint Cup champion, was docked 25 points Wednesday for illegal modifications to the No. 48 Chevrolet before qualifying for the season-opening Daytona 500.

NASCAR also suspended crew chief Chad Knaus and car chief Ron Malec for six races and slapped Knaus with a $100,000 fine.

Johnson finished 42nd at Daytona, earning just two points after a second-lap crash.

He will arrive in Phoenix for Sunday’s Cup race 23 points in the red.

Before the opening practice of Daytona’s Speedweeks on Feb. 17, NASCAR confiscated the No. 48 car’s C-posts, the bodywork that connects the roof to the rear quarter-panel. Officials determined that the bodywork measurements were too far “out of tolerance” to fit inspection templates.

Team owner Rick Hendrick said he will appeal the sanctions.

“Our organization respects NASCAR and the way the sanctioning body governs our sport,” Hendrick said. “In this case, though, the system broke down, and we will voice our concerns through the appeal process.”

| , RacinToday.com Wednesday, February 29 2012
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