RICHMOND, Va. - Changes are likely in store for NASCAR's drug-testing policy.
A NASCAR study group is considering several options for NASCAR's policy, including adding an element of random testing, said NASCAR vice president Jim Hunter. The current policy calls for testing when there is "reasonable suspicion" someone is using banned substances.
"There is a small group looking at this issue. We need to enhance what we have," said Hunter.
"We don't think there is any drug policy in sports today that is any stronger than ours.
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"There is a sensitivity with us that when you test and you tell people you are testing, it gives people the perception that there's a problem that may not be there. We don't like that."
However, Hunter said, NASCAR will adopt an element of random testing to its current policy if the study group recommends such a change be made.
Any change to incorporate random drug testing would likely not take effect until the 2009 season. Regardless of the outcome of the study group, Hunter said NASCAR would find ways to enhance its current policy.
"We've got to put away any doubt that there is anyone participating who is using a banned substance," Hunter said.
"When our drivers say, 'I've never been tested,' that leaves drivers with a perception of a problem and leaves us with a perception of a problem."
NASCAR came under scrutiny after the recent admission by former Truck series driver Aaron Fike in an interview with ESPN The Magazine that he used heroin, including on days he raced.
Several drivers, including Kevin Harvick and Tony Stewart, called on NASCAR to add random testing to help prevent such incidents in the future.
After his arrest in Ohio on drug charges, Fike was indefinitely suspended by NASCAR. Hunter said Fike has never applied for reinstatement with the sanctioning body.