Charlotte, NC (Sports Network) - Sprint Cup Series driver A.J. Allmendinger
publicly commented on his "temporary suspension" from NASCAR for recently
violating its substance abuse policy.
In his statement released on Tuesday, Allmendinger is petitioning NASCAR to
test his "B" sample. The 30-year-old driver failed his initial drug test that
he took the last weekend in June when the series competed at Kentucky
Prior to last Saturday night's 400-mile race at Daytona International
Speedway, NASCAR announced that Allmendinger was suspended "based upon
notification of a positive 'A' test NASCAR received from the Medical Review
Officer as stated in Section 19-11B (6,7) of the NASCAR Substance Abuse
NASCAR also noted, "Pursuant to the rule book, Allmendinger has the
opportunity to request within the next 72 hours that his "B" sample be
tested." That deadline was Tuesday.
"I have informed NASCAR that I have requested that the 'B' sample be tested,
following the steps according to NASCAR's 2012 rule book regarding this
situation," Allmendinger said in his statement. "I fully respect NASCAR's drug
usage policy and the reasons they have it. I am hoping this can get resolved
as quickly as possible so that I can get back to driving the No. 22 Penske
NASCAR has yet to reveal the substance.
Allmendinger is in his first year as driver of the No. 22 Dodge for Penske
Racing. He replaced Kurt Busch in the car after Busch was dismissed from the
team following the 2012 Sprint Cup season.
Sam Hornish Jr., who drives full-time for Penske in the Nationwide Series, was
called upon to substitute for Allmendinger in the No. 22 at Daytona, arriving
at the racetrack moments before the start of the event. Hornish will also
drive the car this weekend at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
"I am sorry that this has caused such a distraction for my Penske Racing team,
our sponsors and fans," Allmendinger noted. "Obviously, I would never do
anything to jeopardize my opportunity here at Penske Racing or to my fellow
drivers. I am very conscious about my training and health and would never
knowingly take a prohibited drug."
If Allmendinger's "B" sample comes back positive, NASCAR will then place
Allmendinger on indefinite suspension, meaning he will have to successfully
complete a drug treatment program before he can be reinstated.
Allmendinger is the second Sprint Cup driver to be suspended since NASCAR
revised its drug policy prior to the start of the 2009 season.
Jeremy Mayfield failed a drug test in May '09 and has not competed in a NASCAR
event since then. Mayfield had continuously lost his legal battle with NASCAR
The Sports Network