Crew chief shuffle lands Chad Johnston at Stewart-Haas Racing

Chad Johnston joins fellow MWR colleague Rodney Childers in making the move to SHR in 2014.

Chad Johnston is the second Michael Waltrip Racing crew chief to find a home at Stewart-Haas Racing.

Johnston confirmed to and the team announced Tuesday that he has signed with Stewart-Haas Racing as crew chief for the No. 14 Chevrolet driven by Tony Stewart in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series.

Johnston joins fellow MWR colleague Rodney Childers, who in August left the No. 55 Toyota (to be driven next year by Brian Vickers) to accept the job as crew chief for Kevin Harvick's No. 4 SHR Chevy next year. Daniel Knost has been promoted from race engineer on the No. 39 team to crew chief for the No. 41 car of Kurt Busch. Tony Gibson remains as crew chief for Danica Patrick and the team’s No. 10 Chevrolet. In addition, former crew chief Greg Zipadelli was named vice president of competition with all four crew chiefs reporting to him.

Championship victory lane: Tony Stewart congratulates Chad Knaus
Championship victory lane: Tony Stewart congratulates Chad Knaus

Photo by: Trevor Horn

"It's a great opportunity for me to be put with someone like Tony Stewart who is a proven winner, a proven champion," Johnston told "Obviously, the expectations are high, so I'm looking forward to prove what I can do and prove that I deserve this position."

Johnston replaces Steve Addington, who has served as crew chief of the No. 14 for the past two seasons.

MWR's ill-fated attempt to manipulate the outcome of the final regular-season NASCAR Sprint Cup race Sept. 7 at Richmond ultimately left Johnston, driver Martin Truex Jr., and No. 56 team members with uncertain prospects for 2014.

Penalties to MWR led to driver Truex's ouster from the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup and the loss of primary sponsor NAPA. Truex subsequently signed with Furniture Row Racing and brought his pit crew with him, and Johnston now has signed on with SHR, where he'll work with a driver who has 48 career NASCAR Sprint Cup victories and three series championships.

Stewart has been sidelined since Aug. 5, when he broke his leg in a sprint car accident in Iowa. Stewart has undergone three surgeries but was at Homestead-Miami Speedway this past weekend.

The 42-year-old owner/driver walked with the aid of a cane, participated in a fishing tournament at the track and visited Victory Lane to congratulate driver Jimmie Johnson and team owner Rick Hendrick on Johnson's sixth series title.

By Reid Spencer - NASCAR Wire Service

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About this article
Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Tony Stewart , Michael Waltrip , Kevin Harvick , Kurt Busch , Jimmie Johnson , Martin Truex Jr. , Brian Vickers , Chad Knaus , Danica Patrick
Teams Stewart-Haas Racing , Furniture Row Racing , Michael Waltrip Racing
Article type Breaking news
Tags chad johnston, daniel knost , greg zipadelli promoted, left mwr, shr, steve addington, stewart-haas, tony stewart crew chief