LOUDON, N.H. — AJ Allmendinger will have a job driving the No. 22 Dodge for Penske Racing if he passes a second drug test this week, car owner Roger Penske said Sunday.
Allmendinger, who was placed on temporary suspension for failing a drug test hours before the July 7 race at Daytona, will have a second sample tested this week. If his “B” sample is negative, Allmendinger will drive the Penske car at Indianapolis Motor Speedway on July 29. If he fails again, his suspension will be indefinite.
“I’m more concerned about him as an individual than the situation,” Penske said of Allmendinger. “The situation will take care of itself. If AJ is clean, he’ll be in the car next week.”
Several drivers have called Penske about a possible opening if Allmendinger fails a second test. But for now, the team plans to keep former Indy Car Series champion Sam Hornish Jr. behind the wheel, team president Tim Cindric said.
Because of privacy issues, NASCAR has told Allmendinger what substance was found in his “A” test, but it hasn’t talked with Penske Racing. The team decided it was up to Allmendinger to work things out with the sanctioning body, and it would respond accordingly – which includes a possible return to the car.
If Allmendinger’s “B” sample is tested next week, the results should be back in time for the race at Indianapolis.
KAHNE CLOSER TO CHASE: Kasey Kahne is only 12th in the Sprint Cup Series standings, but his victory Sunday at New Hampshire was a huge step to clinching a spot in the playoffs.
Kahne, who won the race at Charlotte back in May, is the only driver outside the top 10 with two wins this season. The top 10 drivers make the Chase for the Championship, as well as the two drivers outside of the top 10 with the most wins.
QUICK REACTION: Maximum Human Performance decided to sponsor David Ragan’s car as a response to Brad Keselowski’s comments Friday that all supplements should be banned in NASCAR.
MHP was scheduled to sponsor Ragan’s car at selected races, but it quickly added Sunday’s race after Keselowski responded to the suspension of Allmendinger for failing a drug test.
Keselowski said he doesn’t like the use of any drugs or supplements, even saying Flintstones Vitamins should be outlawed.
That drew the ire, and quick response, from MHP.
“That is his opinion and everyone is entitled to have an opinion,” marketing director Steve Downs said. “NASCAR has policies, rules and regulations in place for supplements just like they do for the engines and the design of the cars. Often what you don’t know can scare you.”