Just five races into his inaugural season on the pit box, Daniel Knost, crew chief for Kurt Busch and the No. 41 Haas Automation Chevrolet SS, took home Federal-Mogul’s MOOG Steering and Suspension “Problem Solver of the Race” Award after the 41 car finished third in Sunday’s Auto Club 400 NASCAR Sprint Cup race in Fontana, Calif.
The MOOG Problem Solver of the Race Award is presented following each Sprint Cup event to the crew chief whose car posts the greatest second-half improvement in average lap time while finishing on the lead lap. The MOOG-equipped Chevrolet, which started 17th, improved by 0.042 seconds while most cars ran slower times over the final 103 laps due to aggressive tire wear on Fontana’s weather-worn 2-mile pavement. Busch was running second on the final restart with two laps remaining but was passed by Kyle Larson and the MOOG-equipped No. 42 Chevrolet, which had four fresh tires.
The top-five finish comes at a good time for Busch, Knost and Stewart-Haas Racing. The team has run relatively well early in the season but spun late at Daytona (finished 21st) and lost an engine at PIR (39th). The 41 ran strong all afternoon at Fontana and led two laps as Knost and his crew fine-tuned the MOOG-equipped chassis to help enhance handling while maximizing tire life on Fontana’s aggressive surface. The track conditions and NASCAR’s new aero rules resulted in an exciting afternoon for racing fans and teams, with a track-record 35 lead changes and six laps of overtime due to the late caution.
“The 41 team showed that they’re quickly getting things sorted out in their first season together,” said Federal-Mogul Motorsports Director Tim Nelson. “Daniel gave Kurt a fast race car at the start and they worked together to become increasingly competitive all afternoon. Their MOOG steering and suspension parts offered the high-speed precision and long-term strength needed to win at Fontana.”
According to the company, MOOG Steering and Suspension is the preferred brand of professional technicians and NASCAR crew chiefs, and MOOG components are recognized as the automotive service industry’s “Problem Solver,” with innovative parts that improve on original designs by providing increased durability, improved performance and easier installation. NASCAR Cup champions have driven to victory with MOOG parts for an unprecedented 48 straight years.
For more information regarding the MOOG Problem Solver awards and MOOG products, visit the brand’s technician-focused www.moogproblemsolver.com website or contact your MOOG supplier. Like MOOG on Facebook at www.facebook.com/moogproblemsolver. To identify the right MOOG part for virtually any application, use the convenient, free www.FMe-cat.com electronic catalog.