By Reid Spencer
NASCAR Wire Service
Distributed by The Sports Xchange
LOUDON, N.H. -- Outspoken Brad Keselowski has a unique solution to substance abuse in sports -- just say "No" to everything.
Prompted for a reaction to Penske Racing teammate AJ Allmendinger's positive test for a proscribed substance and subsequent suspension from competition, Keselowski offered his views after NASCAR Sprint Cup qualifying Friday at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
"It's my personal belief that nothing should be allowed -- nothing," Keselowski said. "I don't feel like you should be able to take Flintstone (vitamin) pills. It's my personal belief. I think you're race car drivers; you should have to overcome it.
"I think it's a bunch of bull that you're allowed to take supplements or any of those things. I don't think that's right. I don't think any athlete should be allowed to take that, but that's my personal beliefs."
Keselowski does believe, though, that knowing the identity of a substance that triggers a positive test matters a lot.
"I think it does matter what it was," Keselowski said. "It does to me. It might not to everybody else, but it matters to me what it was, because there's always going to be that level of uncertainty that I have over any athlete or driver that performs at these levels, and what they're taking or not taking.
"It's so difficult to give a great explanation of how I feel about it, but I think that I want to believe that any performer or athlete out there would not be dumb enough to take a drug that is against the law, illegal. It just stands to reason that, if you've made it this far in the sport, you've had the knowledge to not do anything that dumb."
Despite Keselowski's stance, however, the issue of legal supplements is complicated. Various energy drinks, such as Red Bull, Monster, 5-Hour Energy and NOS, are current or former sponsors of NASCAR teams and drivers.
Keselowski's No. 2 Dodge is sponsored by Miller Lite, and the driver consumes an occasional beer as part of his promotion of the brand.
MORE THAN ONE RACE FOR CARPENTIER?
If RAB Racing team owner Robby Benton can find sponsorship, he'll run popular Canadian driver Patrick Carpentier in the Zippo 200 Nationwide Series race at Watkins Glen as a warmup for the NAPA 200 a week later in Montreal.
Carpentier is slated to drive Benton's No. 99 Toyota Aug. 18 at Montreal. Two years ago, Benton fielded the winning car for Boris Said, claiming the only Nationwide victory to date for both owner and driver.
The pole winner for the 2007 inaugural race at 2.709-mile Circuit Gilles Villeneuve, Carpentier has finished second in five starts at the stand-alone road-course race north of the border. At age 40, the driver from Ville LaSalle, Quebec is coming out of retirement to run the race, but he hopes it's not a one-shot deal.
"Knowing what this race means to Patrick, we're trying to work out a way to run him at Watkins Glen (Aug. 11) to prepare for Montreal," Benton told the NASCAR Wire Service on Friday. "Of course, it's a matter of sponsorship, as it always is."
NEWMAN SAD TO SEE ARMY MARCH AWAY
In a contract year, with Stewart-Haas Racing trying to find sponsorship for his No. 39 Chevrolet, Ryan Newman got some bad news earlier this week when the U.S. Army announced that it was ending its participation as a NASCAR sponsor.
U.S. Congresswoman Betty McCollum (D-Minn.) of the U.S. House of Representatives has led a crusade -- joined by Rep. Jack Kingston (R-Ga.) in authoring an amendment to the pending Department of Defense authorization bill -- to end military sponsorships of sports events and properties.
Before the measure came to a vote, the Army announced it was ending its NASCAR sponsorship. Newman conceded that the Army may have tired of fighting the public relations battle.
"From what I've heard and what I've read, there were some true politics involved," Newman told the NASCAR Wire Service. "I've always been very proud to represent the Army. I learned a lot about the soldiers. I learned a lot about their education programs that we do to recruit and the recruiting process. I hope, whatever they do, it's going to be good for the Army, it's going to be good for the USA to recruit and educate and improve the quality of our soldiers.
"Their decision is their decision, and it's unfortunate for us. I was a proud representative of the name and the people and the colors and everything else. It seems that time has come and passed, and like I said, I wish them the best, but we are here to win for them this weekend (in Army colors at New Hampshire), and we'll do that each and every other time before the end of the season."