Wednesday, August 01, 2012

BREAKING: Allmendinger Released By Penske Racing

Allmendinger out at Penske Racing
AJ Allmendinger has confirmed his release from Penske Racing’s No. 22 Shell Pennzoil Sprint Cup Series Dodge.

"Effective today, I have been released from Penske Racing as driver of the No. 22 Dodge Charger,” said Allmendinger in a written statement. “I wish to thank Mr. Penske, Penske Racing, their sponsors, and especially all the of the No. 22 team for the opportunity they provided me and for their support in this difficult time. I also, again, would like to thank all the fans that really have been awesome through this.

“I apologize for the distraction, embarrassment, and difficulties that my current suspension from NASCAR has provided. As I stated last week, I have begun NASCAR's Road to Recovery program and look forward to using those resources and its completion to compete again in NASCAR in the near future.”

Roger Penske Racing also released a statement, saying he “fully supports NASCAR's substance abuse policy” and adding, “we are disappointed with AJ's positive drug test results. AJ is a terrific driver, a good person and it is very unfortunate that we have to separate at this time. We have invested greatly in AJ and we were confident in his success with our team. The decision to dismiss him is consistent with how we would treat any other Penske Racing team member under similar circumstances. As AJ begins NASCAR's ‘Road to Recovery’ program, we wish him the best and look forward to seeing him compete again in NASCAR."

Sam Hornish Jr., will drive the No. 22 Dodge at Pocono this weekend and for the foreseeable future, as Penske Racing continues to evaluate its options for the 2013 NASCAR Sprint Cup season.
Photo Credit: NASCAR/Getty Images


  1. Anonymous11:46 AM

    At first I didn't think so, but this now leads me to believe that this was an illicit substance.

    1. Anonymous6:46 PM

      Whenever someone is wrongly labeled in drug tests they come clean with the media with their version of events like the name of the substance and potential sources for injesting it. That would also be what Roger Penske wanted to understand. His silence and Penske's actions would support your comment.

  2. Well that just sucks out loud.

  3. Anonymous11:56 AM

    What else would you expect Penske to do ? I'd have already fired the guy !

    1. Anonymous12:46 PM

      Well, than you and Jesus are the two most perfect people in the world.

    2. Anonymous11:25 AM

      No , I am a sinner as we all fall short of God's glory , I'm sure Jesus will forgive him if he asks for forgiveness !

  4. Anonymous11:58 AM

    Is he still stating that there was something in his supplements? If you start Road to Recovery, isn't part of that admitting that you use / have a problem?

    I like AJ - but it's time to man up.

  5. Anonymous11:59 AM

    Well, we know now Penske is hard-line. But, I wonder how much Shell had to do with this decision. To dismiss a 'team' member for a first instance is pretty crummy. Most of corporate America (including my company) AFTER rehab allows people to return to work.

    It just pisses me off Dinger had the rug pulled out from under him. And it also shows that Penske isn't a fun place to work.

    Doug from disgruntled NJ

  6. Anonymous12:09 PM

    Dave- I agree, a sad ending to the AJ/Penske story. AJ will always have my support and I look forward to the day he returns to the track - whether it be in NASCAR or any other form of racing!

  7. Anonymous12:22 PM

    Now is the time to tell us all what happened. And no matter what we still love ya.

    1. Anonymous12:58 PM

      Correct. No more statements. Come out and speak to the public.

  8. Anonymous12:53 PM

    I kinda feel bad for Shell and Penske, first Kirt and now AJ..

  9. Anonymous12:57 PM

    Doug- Most companies do have EAP but as for not getting let go that mainly applies if you seek treatment before getting caught. None of this is fun. I hate it for AJ.

  10. Anonymous12:57 PM

    We get it. Most everybody likes AJ.

    He broke the rules. Is it sad? Sure. But, he put himself in that situation and now he has to pay the piper.

    Everybody can say "Poor AJ" or "AJ got a raw deal" but he had a box that he was supposed to stay in. He stepped out of it. When he renewed his NASCAR license this year he agreed to not ingest any of the compounds listed on the banned substance list. He unfortunately didn't follow that list. Intent is meaningless.

    I think we all need to band together and support him going forward and not complain or reflect about the prior events. Hopefully he works on himself and comes back an even better person.

  11. Anonymous12:58 PM

    Feel bad for Penske and Shell, first Kurt and now AJ....

  12. Anonymous1:56 PM

    Poor Shell/Pennzoil....They jumped ship from sponsor friendly Kevin Harvick and RCR and have ended up with Kurt's and AJ's issues getting them the wrong kind of publicity. The grass ain't always greener.

    1. Bob in Ohio12:24 PM

      The grass ain't always greener… Amen

  13. Anonymous2:03 PM

    I realy dont think its matters how or why. The bigger picture is he's getting help and hopefuly he will be racing soon best wishes AJ

  14. The Debster2:10 PM

    I think we all knew how this was going to end, badly
    A.J. is a great driver and I wish him all the best

  15. Anonymous2:54 PM

    Penske, the family friendly company that takes care of their family.


  16. Anonymous3:34 PM

    I don't think AJ needs to tell the public anything.I think we "the public" should let Nascar handle it as they have and the only person AJ has to face is "himself". I think it is very sad.

  17. billy bob4:41 PM

    for the people say aj got a raw deal, i bet you are the same people that when a crewman gets suspended for drugs you see nothing wrong with that

  18. Anonymous7:15 PM

    Now that Aj is released from penske I really think he should let he fans know what happen because we are all humans and don't care.what it was he did. But I also feel the more we.wait will stop caring also

  19. Anonymous7:17 PM

    AJ was hired to win races and hasn't done that for Penske. Add a failed drug test on top if that, and he's not worth holding onto. There are good clean drivers like Bayne, Vickers, Sadler, Reutimann etc who are looking for full time Cup rides. It's hard to blame Riger for moving on.

  20. well,the first step is admitting you have a problem, godspeed AJ,

  21. Whats been missing through all of this is AJ's voice.
    We've heard from Tara. We've heard from Tim.

    We haven't heard from AJ. We've 'heard' his press release. Enough is enough. Hiding behind your sponsors and Penske's motives is gone now that you are. Fess up, or speak up.

    I consider myself an emotional guy, which serves me well at times, and is a detriment in others. I don't see how there could be any further damage to AJ's image by him using his own voice... Unless he is guilty as charged.

    As it looks now, its a shameful waste of opportunity.

  22. Anonymous9:20 PM

    Coin flip, angry man who wins or man who doesn't win failing drug test.

    They should have stuck with the angry man. At least they'd have someone to work with who HAS talent, instead of someone who was given the best equipment and failed to make a dent in the top 10.

  23. I feel for AJ, but the line is the line. Penske did what they had to do and waited for the due process to play out. Unfortunately for AJ (and anyone else for that matter) if your B sample supports the A sample, that ends your road to appeal. Just because you enter the road to recovery doesn't necessarily mean you did something illegal or wrong. It just means either you go to court or you toe the line. Hopefully AJ will bounce back from this somewhere. Still a very talented driver but this will probably be the end of any hopes for superstardom in Cup.