Chad Knaus's Three Wishes - Sporting News

Sporting News’ 50 Most Beautiful People:  Chad Knaus

Sporting News asked that question of readers, fans and those who cover the sport, and the results weren’t limited by traditional definitions of beauty. The editors considered fan favor


Who are NASCAR’s most beautiful people?

The sites and sponsor favorites and gave them points, and they also awarded points to “those were were making waves in the sport.”

The results of this non-traditional approach are now out with the publication of NASCAR’s 50 Most Beautiful People. The special edition is now available on newsstands and at the online store at

SceneDaily is running the list, with one person from the top 50 to be featured each day. Only the top selection was ranked, with the rest following in a random order that allows fans to decide who should be ranked where.

Today’s installment features Chad Knaus, four-time NASCAR Cup championship crew chief with the No. 48 Hendrick Motorsports team of Jimmie Johnson.

Born: Aug. 5, 1971
Birthplace: Rockford, Ill.
Current residence: Cornelius, N.C.

In his words:
First job: I was washing cars in a used car dealership. I was working at a detail shop. I was 13 at the time, maybe 12.

Last year … [We won] our third straight [Cup] championship.

Pet peeve: I’d say, uncleanliness. I like things to be clean and neat and orderly. I’m a little anal retentive, a little type-A.

Can’t live without … my job. It’s everything I live for. I have a great group of guys. I have a great job. It’s definitely the one thing I’m most proud of and wouldn’t want to be without it.

Life-changing moment: We had a plane crash that took the lives of many who were very close to us. That was probably the largest reality check. It made me realize there’s a lot more to what we do and it means a lot more to people than what you may think. Watching the Hendricks go through what they did, it makes you understand relationships with people and understand love and what they mean to you.

In 10 years … I hope that I am married with a child or children and healthy and still involved in the sport.

Vacation: I typically will go to an island, somewhere where I can go scuba diving or snorkeling.

Best race track/city: Obviously Las Vegas is fantastic. It’s a cool city; there’s a lot going on. The facility at the track is awesome, and it’s very fan friendly. But they’ve (race tracks) all got their little twists. Infineon is cool. It’s a neat area. It’s beautiful with the mountains and the vineyards. I like going up there and staying at the winery. A lot of fans like that. There’s the going up and doing the wine tasting and there’s a lot of great restaurants. It’s a lot of fun.

Three wishes: My first wish would be to have a good wife and family. A successful family relationship — that would be awesome. My second wish would be to help kids. A friend of mine has two daughters who have spinal muscular atrophy (a genetic disease that causes muscle degeneration and weakness); if I could help them, I would. And my third wish would be to get three more wishes.

Chad Knaus and Brielle at Michigan International Speedway.