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Allmendinger reinstated after program

AJ Allmendinger has been reinstated from indefinite NASCAR suspension, after the completion of his mandatory Road to Recovery program following a positive random drugs test.
AJ Allmendinger's indefinite suspension from racing competition is over, with NASCAR officially confirming his reinstatement following the driver's successful completion of the series' Substance Abuse Policy Road to Recovery program.

Allmendinger tested positive for a stimulant - believed to be an ADHD prescription drug called Adderall - in a random drugs test that took place at Kentucky Speedway at the end of June, and was initially provisionally suspended on July 7.

Following a second test to confirm the original findings, Allmendinger was suspended indefinitely on July 24 and agreed to undertake NASCAR's mandatory treatment and rehabilitation program, which he reportedly completed at the end of August. He has since been waiting for the sanctioning body for formally certify his return to competition status, which came on Tuesday evening.

"I want to thank everyone for their support through this entire process," said Allmendinger. "I appreciate that NASCAR created the the Road to Recovery program, and am grateful for the opportunity to return to competition."

He becomes the first Cup driver suspended for a failed drugs test to earn reinstatement in the series.

Allmendinger told ESPN at the start of last month that the bespoke road to recovery program was treating his case as more stress management than drugs rehabilitation, and said this week that the process had proved beneficial to him in his approach to his work and career.

"The Road to Recovery program was really helpful to me in getting my priorities reset away from the race track," he insisted. "Honestly, that helped find my love of racing again and why I began racing in the first place. I'm looking forward to taking this experience and be better for it moving forward."

Talking to The Associated Press, he added: "I feel like I was educated on a lot of things and a lot of things about myself. I just needed to get my priorities straight and my life straightened out ... So much of what I was doing at the race track was dictating the person I was."

Even though he's now eligible to return to driving duties in NASCAR Sprint Cup competition or any of NASCAR's other race series, Allmendinger looks unlikely to make a rapid return behind the wheel.

As a matter of company policy, Penske Racing fired Allmendinger after the positive drugs test result was confirmed, with Sam Hornish Jr. getting the seat of the #22 Shell-Pennzoil Cup car in the short-term and the team signing Joey Logano to take over the car full-time in 2013.




Related Pictures

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AJ Allmendinger, driver of the #22 Shell/Pennzoil Dodge, looks on in the garage during practice for the NASCAR Budweiser Shootout at Daytona International Speedway on February 17, 2012 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)
AJ Allmendinger walking in pit lane after practice for the Sprint Cup event at Pocono. (Photo credit: Drew Hallowell/Getty Images)
#22 Penske Racing crew chief Todd Gordon talks with driver AJ Allmendinger during NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Coors Light Pole Qualifying on Saturday at Kansas Speedway in Kansas City, Kan. (Photo Credit: Tyler Barrick/Getty Images)
AJ Allmendinger speaking at Richmond. [Photo Credit: Tom Whitmore/Harrelson Photography]
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Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 Axalta Chevrolet SS, races to a sixth place finish Sunday, November 22, 2015 in the final race of the 2015 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season at Homestead-Miami Speedway in Homestead, Florida. Gordon finishes third in the Chase for the Cup Championship. This was Gordon`s last race as a NASCAR Sprint Cup driver. He has made 796 consecutive Cup Series starts, earned 93 wins, and 81 poles - all behind the wheel of Chevrolets. (Photo by Andrew Coppley/HHP for Chevy Racing)
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Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Budweiser/Jimmy John`s Chevrolet, Kyle Busch, driver of the #18 M&M`s Crispy Toyota, Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 AXALTA Chevrolet, and Martin Truex Jr., driver of the #78 Furniture Row/Denver Mattress Chevrolet, race during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 22, 2015 in Homestead, Florida. (Photo Credit: Chris Trotman/NASCAR via Getty Images)
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Kyle Busch, driver of the #18 M&M`s Crispy Toyota, celebrates winning the series championship and the race with his team after the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 22, 2015 in Homestead, Florida. (Photo Credit: Chris Trotman/NASCAR via Getty Images)
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Paul P - Unregistered

September 19, 2012 7:53 AM

This guy is a joke....(as anyone present at the Autosport Awards when he spoke can confirm). He's lucky enough to find himself in a full budget, salaried drive in one of the very best teams, and doesn't bother getting his various medications checked for compliance with NASCAR rules? Idiot...ADHD indeed

KGBVD - Unregistered

September 19, 2012 2:50 PM

@ Paul, Actually, his story is more pathetic than that. He claimed that he was out with some people for the night and he was tired. So a 'friend of a friend' offered him a pill, telling him it was an energy supplement. And he took it. THAT, is the hallmark of a grade-A idiot: "Sure, Guy-I-Don't-Know, I'll take this unmarked mystery pill even though I just met you". *****. Now, beyond that moment of stupidity (which indicates that he should be kept in a padded cell so he can't hurt himself), the fact that an ADHD drug is banned is a bit odd considering that the greats like Moss and Fangio won their races with gas in their tanks and coke in their noses.



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