AJ Allmendinger will send his own expert toxicologist to the July 24 test of the “B” urine sample collected June 29 under NASCAR’s substance abuse policy, Allmendinger’s business manager, Tara Ragan, confirmed Tuesday.
Allmendinger, who drives the No. 22 Penske Racing Dodge in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, was suspended from competition July 7 before the Coke Zero 400 at Daytona after his “A” sample tested positive for what Ragan termed “a stimulant.”
The “B” sample test, scheduled for 8 a.m. on July 24 at Aegis Analytical Laboratories in Nashville, Tenn., either will confirm or differ from the “A” sample results. Given that the “A” and “B” samples are collected at the same time — in Allmendinger’s case at Kentucky Speedway — the likelihood of a different result is minimal statistically.
Team owner Roger Penske has reserved judgment on Allmendinger’s status until the “B” sample results are in. Penske told reporters Sunday at New Hampshire Motor Speedway that he hoped Allmendinger would be back in the No. 22 car in time for the Crown Royal 400 on July 29 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
“If the results go his way, meaning that he can get back in the car, he’ll be in the car at Indianapolis,” Penske said.
Allmendinger has elected to send his own expert to the “B” sample test, Ragan said.
“Pursuant to the 2012 NASCAR Rulebook and in line with the procedures, we have elected to have a designated independent toxicologist present on AJ’s behalf,” Ragan said in a statement released Tuesday morning.Â “Along with everyone else, we are looking forward to hearing the results as quickly as possible.
“AJ and all of us at Walldinger Racing (Allmendinger’s company) have truly appreciated the outpouring of support from our fans, partners, and colleagues. It has meant a lot to us during this difficult time. We are also grateful to Mr. Penske and his management team for their patience and respect of the process we are going through.”
Should the “B” sample also test positive, NASCAR has the option to suspend Allmendinger indefinitely, pending completion of a Road to Recovery program under terms set forth on an individual basis.
NASCAR elaborated on the sequence of events following Allmendinger’s positive “A” sample test in a statement Tuesday. On Wednesday, July 4, according to the statement, NASCAR’s Substance Abuse Policy Program Administrator, Dr. David Black, sent a positive “A” sample result to the program’s Medical Review Officer, Dr. Douglas Aukerman.
On July 5, Aegis sent the final paperwork to Dr. Aukerman, who attempted to contact Allmendinger by phone on Friday, July 6, the day drivers were qualifying for the Coke Zero 400. Aukerman and Allmendinger exchanged phone messages.
On July 7, Aukerman reached Allmendinger by phone and informed him of the positive test. The MRO notified NASCAR later that day, and NASCAR suspended Allmendinger from competition. On July 9, Allmendinger officially notified the MRO of his desire to have the “B” sample tested, within the 72-hour window allowed by NASCAR rules.
Once a NASCAR member requests a “B” sample test, he or she has 30 days within which to schedule the test.
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