NASCAR driver A.J. Allmendinger made his first public comments since he failed a drug test that led to his temporary suspension.
Allmendinger requested NASCAR test his "B" sample, hoping it will produce a negative result. If that test does come up negative for banned substances, Allmendinger will be reinstated immediately. It the test is positive, he would be suspended indefinitely. The result is likely to take at least four or five days to produce.
"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. I fully respect NASCAR's drug usage policy and the reasons they have it," the statement read. "I am hoping this can get resolved as quickly as possible so that I can get back to driving the No. 22 Penske Racing Dodge. I am sorry that this has caused such a distraction for my Penske Racing team, our sponsors and fans.
"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."
Sam Hornish Jr. was announced as Allmendinger's replacement for Sunday's race at New Hampshire.
Allmendinger could complete NASCAR's drug abuse program, which would allow him to be considered for reinstatement, although there is no assurance he would have a ride even if he is reinstated.
The "B" sample will be tested at the same Nashville laboratory that tested the "A" sample collected June 29. The samples were taken at the same time and then separated.
NASCAR does not reveal the name of a substance that leads to a positive test result.