Chicago Update: Knaus explains slow stop for Johnson


Jimmie Johnson has been one of the stronger cars so far during today’s Chase opener at Chicagoland Speedway, which is currently under a red flag for rain at Lap 110. However, he hit a bit of a snag earlier on during a green flag stop, his second of the day, at Lap 75.

An already slow stop was made even slower after an official reported that a lug nut was loose on Johnson’s right-rear tire. That led to some frantic moments among the 48 crew before Johnson was able to get on his way.

Johnson fell from the lead to fifth, and had moved up to fourth behind race leader Matt Kenseth, Brad Keselowski and Joey Logano when rain forced the yellow at Lap 107. Three laps later, the red was brought out.

ESPN caught up with Johnson’s crew chief, Chad Knaus (pictured, right, with Johnson), who explained the incident on pit road.

“There was one hanging there,” Knaus said. “One had fallen off during the hand-in so it was kind of hanging there. But the tire changer had taken the time – he did his job, did a great job – of getting the other lug nut on there and making sure it was tight. The official thought there were only four on there.

“We all make mistakes. That happens from time to time. Hopefully, we can get the Lowe’s Chevrolet back towards the front and get up there and compete for the win.”

Johnson tried to keep his cool during the long stop, but also admitted to ESPN that he “could see confusion.”

“I saw an official waving, I saw my rear tire changer done and at the wall arguing with Chad, telling him that the lugs were on,” he said. “In the end, I guess the official thought all the lugs weren’t on the right rear and that was where there was a conversation and an argument.

“Chad didn’t want me to leave the box without the lugs on and get a penalty, and on and on it went. Long story short, I sat there on pit road while the clock was ticking…[We] certainly lost track position, but I think we’ve got the car to get back up there. We just need to get this place to dry out, get my Lowe’s Chevy back on the road, and we’ll be in good shape.”

First thing’s first, though, and, to borrow Johnson’s line, that’s getting the place to dry out. We’ll see how long it takes.

Peacock to stream all Supercross and Motocross races in 2023, plus inaugural SuperMotocross Championship

Peacock Supercross Motocross 2023
Feld Entertainment, Inc.

NBC Sports and Feld Motor Sports announced that Peacock and the NBC family of networks will stream all 31 races of the combined Monster Energy Supercross, Lucas Oil Pro Motocross and the newly created SuperMotocross World Championship beginning January 7, 2023 at Angel Stadium in Anaheim, California and ending October 14 in the place where Supercross was born: the Los Angeles Coliseum.

The combined series will create a 10-month calendar of events, making it one of the longest professional sports’ seasons in the United States.

The agreement is for multiple years. The season finale will air live on Peacock and the USA Network.

Peacock will present live coverage of all races, qualifying and heats across both series. The 31 total races will mark a record for the combined number of Supercross and Pro Motocross events that NBC Sports will present in a single season.

NBC, USA Network and CNBC will provide coverage of all races, including the SuperMotocross World Championship Playoffs and Final, through 2023 and beyond. For more information about the Peacock streaming service, click here.

“With our wide array of live and original motorsports offerings, Peacock is a natural home for Supercross and Pro Motocross races,” said Rick Cordella, Chief Commercial Officer, Peacock. “We’re looking forward to providing fans with an easily-accessible destination to find every race all season long, including the exciting finish with the newly formed SuperMotocross World Championship.”

MORE: A conversation about media rights created the new SuperMotocross World Championship Series

The NBC family of networks has been home to Supercross for the past several seasons and this is a continuation of that relationship. The media rights for both series expired at the end of 2022, which allowed Supercross and Motocross to combine their efforts.

In fact, it was that conversation that led to the formation of the SuperMotocross World Championship (SMX).

The SMX series will begin on September 9, 2023 after the conclusion of the Pro Motocross season. Points will accumulate from both series to seed the SMX championship, which creates a record number of unified races.

“The SuperMotocross World Championship adds a new dimension to the annual Supercross and Pro Motocross seasons that will result in crowning the ultimate World Champion,” said Stephen C. Yaros, SVP Global Media and Supercross for Feld Motor Sports. “We are thrilled to be extending our relationship with NBC Sports so our fans can watch all the racing action streaming live on Peacock and the option to also watch select rounds on NBC, USA Network and CNBC.”

Complete 2023 coverage schedules for Supercross, Pro Motocross and the SuperMotocross World Championship on Peacock, NBC, USA Network and CNBC will be announced in the near future.