No. 48 Team Pit Crew Champs

The pit crew for newly-crowned Nextel Cup champion Jimmie Johnson claimed the season-long Checkers/Rally's Double Drive-Thru Challenge competition.

Though Johnson's No. 48 Lowe's crew was tied with Tony Stewart's crew with five wins each, the tiebreaker went to Johnson's crew for having the highest finish in the driver point standings.

For winning the season pit crew championship, Johnson's team will collect a $105,000 bonus from Checkers/Rally's. The presentation will be made Nov. 30 in New York City at the NASCAR NMPA Myers Brothers Awards Luncheon.

By winning the Checkers/Rally's weekly competition five times and earning $10,500 for each victory, the total prize money earned in 2006 by Johnson's pit crew was $157,500.

Johnson's over-the-wall crew consists of: Chris Anderson (jackman), Art Simmons (front-tire carrier), Mike Trower (front-tire changer), Ron Malec (rear-tire carrier), Tim Ladyga (rear-tire changer), Rich Gutierrez (gasman), Mike Knauer (catch can) and Sean Kerlin (eighth-man). The team's pit crew coach is Matt Clark and the crew chief is Chad Knaus.

"I'd like to congratulate Jimmie Johnson's crew for winning the Checkers/Rally's Double Drive-Thru Challenge championship as well as the NASCAR Nextel Cup championship," said Rich Turer, Vice President of Marketing, Checkers Drive-In Restaurants, Inc. "It was a competitive season among the pit crews with 15 different teams winning the weekly competition. Checkers/Rally's is excited to bring the spotlight to the crew members, who play an integral role in the success of each team."

Joe Nemechek's U.S. Army pit crew took top honors in Sunday's season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway. It was the second Checkers/Rally's Double Drive-Thru Challenge win for the 01 team.

"It was another outstanding effort by the Army crew at Homestead," said Nemechek. "The 01 crew has been Army Strong the entire season and I am thrilled that they have been recognized again by Checkers/Rally's for winning the pit crew award."

Nemechek's over-the-wall crew, which spent 298.990 seconds on pit road, includes: Scott King (jackman), John Boyd (front-tire carrier), Charlie Brock (front-tire changer), Dwayne Moore (rear-tire carrier), Dave Woodhead (rear-tire changer), Danny Harrington (gasman), Mark Bieberich (catch can) and J.D. Hilton (windshield). The team's crew chief is Ryan Pemberton and the pit crew coach is Lance Munksgard.

Busch Series Results
Ending the season with another strong performance, Johnny Sauter's No. 00 over-the-wall crew earned its 11th win of the year in the Busch Series Checkers/Rally's Double Drive-Thru Challenge at Homestead-Miami Speedway. The crew, which clinched the Busch Series pit crew challenge championship following Charlotte (Oct. 13), spent 129.874 seconds on pit road. They were awarded a $20,000 champions bonus.

Truck Series Results
David Reutimann's No. 17 pit crew secured the Truck Series Checkers/Rally's Double Drive-Thru Challenge title by earning the honor four times this season. The crews of Jack Sprague, Ron Hornaday, Johnny Benson, and Mike Skinner finished the season tied for second with three wins each. Reutimann's team will be awarded a $20,000 champions bonus.

Matt Crafton's No. 88 over-the-wall crew picked up its first win of the season in the Truck Series pit crew competition by spending the least amount of time on pit road (291.438 seconds) in Friday's event (Nov. 17) at Homestead-Miami Speedway.

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