Thursday, October 17, 2013

NASCAR indefinitely suspends Sprint Cup Series crew chief Todd Parrott

  NASCAR’s random drug testing policy nabbed its first Sprint Cup Series crew chief on Thursday.
   NASCAR announced Todd Parrott, crew chief for driver Aric Almirola at Richard Petty Motorsports, had been indefinitely suspended for violation of the sanctioning body’s Substance Abuse Policy.

   “We have an expectation of all RPM employees to conduct themselves at the highest level of professionalism and within the competitive confines set forth by NASCAR,” Sammy Johnson, RPM’s vice president of operations and competition, said in a statement.

   “We are very disappointed that one of our employees did not meet our expectations and we completely support NASCAR, their policies and final decisions when it comes to the substance abuse policy.”

   Parrott has indicated he will participate in NASCAR’s Road to Recovery Program and a team spokesman said RPM supports that decision.

   Johns will serve as Almirola’s crew chief on the No. 43 Ford on an interim basis until further notice.

   Parrott won the Cup series championship with driver Dale Jarrett in 1999 when both worked with Robert Yates Racing. He has 31 career wins.

   This season, Almirola is currently a career-best 18th in the Cups series standings with one top-five and six top-10 finishes.

   Soon after the announcement of Parrott’s suspension, Almirola posted the following message on his Twitter account:

   “Todd Parrott is a good crew chief, a good person and a good friend. I’ll be a big cheerleader of his to get thru this difficult time.”

Elliott Sadler to replace Brian Vickers for final four Sprint Cup races in 2013

  Team release:

   CORNELIUS, N.C. – Michael Waltrip Racing announced today that Elliott Sadler will drive the No. 55 Aaron’s Dream Machine Toyota in the 2013 season’s final four NASCAR Sprint Cup races.

   Sadler replaces Brian Vickers who informed MWR on Oct. 14 that he would be unavailable for the remainder of the season due to anti-coagulation medications he will be taking to treat a small blood clot in his right leg. Doctors have told Vickers he will be on the medication at least two months.   

   Sadler, who drives a Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota full time in the NASCAR Nationwide Series, will begin racing the No. 55 at Martinsville (Va.) Speedway on Oct. 27. He will finish the season for the Scott Miller led team at Texas, Phoenix and Homestead.

   “First, I am already a teammate of Brian’s at Joe Gibbs Racing and it is really tough to see him going through this again,” said Sadler. “Both of us have fought hard to get back in a position to win at NASCAR’s highest level.

   "I am honored to have this opportunity to drive for MWR because I know their cars are competitive. I want to thanks Rob Kauffman, Michael and Aaron's for giving me this chance. In the meantime, our thoughts and prayers will be for Brian to have a quick recovery."