Hometown: Rockford, Ill.
Lives: Charlotte, N.C.
Job: Crew chief for Jimmie Johnson's No. 48 Lowe's Chevrolet with Hendrick Motorsports
2002 record: 14 starts, two victories, three pole positions, four top-fives, 10 top-10s and $1,484,580 in earnings
Personal notes: Father John Knaus has been racing for more than 30 years in the Midwest, winning late-model championships at several speedways. ... When he fabricated his first part, his father wouldn't let him put it on a race car. He credits that for making him so focused on detail. ... Knaus worked with Stacy Compton at Melling Racing a year ago, where they won a couple of pole positions.
Other highlights: Hendrick Motorsports teammate Jeff Gordon is a part owner of the team. Both Johnson and Gordon have 2,054 points heading into Sunday's race at Sears Point, Calif., and both trail only Sterling Marlin in the standings. But Johnson is considered the second-place driver since he has a 2-0 lead over his boss in victories.
- Don Coble