Knaus got his start at the Rockford Speedway as a mechanic working on his father's racing car.
"It gives you a sense of pride to know the Rockford Speedway had that much of an effect on a guy's career, and he used Rockford as a launching pad onto bigger and better things," said Rockford Speedway GM Gregg McKarns to WTVO. "Definitely it was cool to see the response on twitter and the social media. They just blew up."
Several racers and other people behind the scenes at Daytona have raced at or been a part of the Rockford Speeway over the years.
Mark Martin and Travis Kvapil are two of the racers Sunday who have turned laps at Rockford.
"There's just a lot of ties to short track racing in the Midwest that you see on the big scene whether it's the guy turning the steering wheel or the guy turning the wrench," says McKarn. "There's an endless list of people that have come through the pit gate or sat in the grandstands at the Rockford Speedway that are now in the big time."