Knaus on the banter: “Sometimes, those guys in the race car — They just want to yell at somebody.”
Jimmie Johnson and his crew chief, Chad Knaus, are notorious for radio arguments. Sometimes the bickering comes from nowhere, other time it’s a build up.
But, does it come between them? Does it effect their relationship outside of the car?
Chad Knaus laughed through the topic. Watch the video below.
“It’s so funny. You know, I sit back and they do the scanner replay’s during the shows. Man, there’s people a heck of a lot worse than what Jimmie and I are,” Chad Knaus told Sirius XM NASCAR Radio with a laugh.
“So, why does everybody pick on us?”
“Yes, Jimmie and I have banter. We get snarky with one another. Just like anybody else would.”
“Jimmie and I have done a very good job of being able to not make it personal. It’s trying to drive and get a point across.”
“Look man, sometimes, those guys in the race car — They just want to yell at somebody.”
Knaus has a difficult job. He’s the first line of direct communication for the driver. When things go wrong on track, said driver might be mad at another competitor. But, the driver can’t communicate with the other driver. Instead, that emotion can be directed at the only one it can, the crew chief. Sometimes, a spotter might catch some shrapnel as well.
“So, if he’s going to yell and anybody and get upset or frustrated throughout the race, I’d much rather be it me. Than, anybody else on the team.”
In 2017, Jimmie Johnson had a down year. Johnson picked up 3 wins early in the year. However, the last of those came in June. During the last 5 months of the season, Johnson’s best two finishes were 3rd and 7th.
“When you have a year, like we had last year, where you’re not as successful as what you think you should be — There’s a lot of emotions that come into play.”
“I understand that. Jimmie understands that. We just move on. We’re good, we’ve got a great relationship and everything’s fine.”
Jimmie Johnson is a 7-time NASCAR Cup Series champion. That puts him tied for the most championships in the history of the sport. Chad Knaus has been with him for the duration of that quest.