Mayfield needs to go away and get help

When this whole Jeremy Mayfield/NASCAR drug saga began a few weeks ago, everyone wanted to believe a mistake was made with the testing results. But now with a second test also coming back positive for methamphetamine use, you have to face reality that there is an issue and a problem here.

I think Mayfield and the folks standing behind him are looking in the wrong place and they should be looking at Mayfield and get him taken care of.

What is also wrong here is that our sport is suffering. I just think this case is doing so much damage to our sport. I liken it to some of the bigger high profile cases our country has witnessed where from the very beginning the defendant loudly proclaimed their innocence only for it to be proven in court that they were indeed guilty.

It’s just painful to watch. I believe we are at the point right now that it needs to stop and that Jeremy needs to fess up, get some help and let’s move on down the road.

One area that I don’t think has been addressed is the safety of the fans. Look what happened at Talladega and Daytona recently. These accidents happened with trained professionals behind the wheel. They had all their faculties’ razor sharp when they ran those races. I think that’s why NASCAR is so adamant about how and why they came up with the drug policy that is currently in place and how they enforce it has to do with protecting our fans. That’s where their concern should be. A race car driver that isn’t totally there doesn’t need to be going 190 mph out of control.

It’s time for Mayfield to put the sport first if he truly loves it as much as he proclaims. I had a NASCAR person tell me that he could have easily already gone through a rehab program and been back in the car by now. NASCAR does all it can to try and get drivers back into a race car when the circumstances warrant it and once the driver in question meets NASCAR’s stringent criteria.

Unfortunately Jeremy has shown he isn’t willing to do that.

Our sport is going through the same thing that football, basketball and baseball have all gone through. It’s something we are just going to have to deal with. We can’t lose our focus on what is good about our sport. We can’t let this one thing overshadow all the good things NASCAR has to offer.

I think this is a clear signal to everyone in our sport that NASCAR will fight as hard as they can to protect the integrity of the sport. Obviously the smartest thing to do is just don’t do it. If you can’t control something like a drug addiction, well by golly, you don’t deserve to be a part of what we have going on here. I am talking especially more so when it comes to a driver. They have the best job in the world. They have the greatest opportunities.

Trust me, there are so many young men and women around the world that would love to be doing what our drivers are doing. If these drivers today can’t understand what is valuable, well I am sorry, I simply can’t feel sorry for them when they squander or throw it away. We’ve seen it with other drivers in some of our other series that have lost their way and if you can’t learn from that, then maybe this will be situation that everyone learns from.


FOX race analyst Jeff Hammond led Darrell Waltrip to two of DW’s three Winston Cup championships as his crew chief. They also teamed to win the 1989 Daytona 500.

For autographed copies of Jeff Hammond’s book “Real Men Work in the Pits” plus magnets, hats and more, check out www.dwstore.com.

For photos and appearances, visit Jeff’s web site
www.jeffhammond.com.

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