Is Mayfield the Victim? -- by J. R. Andres 
Friday, July 3, 2009, 12:12 AM
Posted by Administrator
The ongoing saga of Mayfield vs. NASCAR took another turn when U.S. District Court Judge, Graham Mullen, signed a temporary injunction allowing Jeremy Mayfield to compete in this weekend’s NASCAR race at Daytona after being suspended two months ago for a failed drug test. Funny thing ... Mayfield didn’t enter the race. Sources close to the situation said it had to do with sponsorships but maybe there were other factors that no one’s talking about that made him sit this one out.

The circus atmosphere that has surrounded this matter from the start has polarized a number of factions within the racing community and brought to light some important issues that will surely be addressed when this whole thing is finally in everyone’s rear view mirror. At the heart of the matter is NASCAR, a family owned organization that sets the rules and the policies that everyone has to play by. For sixty years the France’s have guided the sport from humble beginnings to a place of prominence and like it or not, their decisions are final, or so they thought.

Jeremy Mayfield decided to contest his suspension after testing positive for a “recreational” drug and like Don Quixote has committed himself to clearing his name but there are many windmills yet to conquer before he, Rocinante and Sancho can rest easy once again, secure in knowing they fought the good fight for truth, justice and righteousness.

Many believe that Mayfield’s career is effectively over at this point, regardless of the final outcome and several drivers, Jeff Gordon, Jimmie Johnson and Robby Gordon, recently submitted affidavits stating they are not “willing to put my life at risk driving a race car on a NASCAR track with drivers testing positive for drugs that diminish their capacity to drive a race car.” No one can blame them. Others think that Mayfield is the victim of NASCAR demagogues who arbitrarily make decisions without offering any recourse for the accused to pursue the matter any further. These individuals are convinced that Mayfield effectively got the short end of the stick and the decision to keep him off the track was one more example of NASCAR’s excessive iron-handed style of doing things.

At this point, NASCAR has not indicated what its next move will be and the facts remain sketchy as to whether Mayfield did, in fact, have an illegal substance in his system. It’s clear that both sides are committed to seeing it through to the end and have the matter decided in court. When that time comes, one can only hope that something is learned by both sides in order to avoid the possibility of more windmills being built in the future.


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