Call me a fool — and you won’t be the first if you do — but I’m standing behind Jeremy Mayfield.
I couldn’t believe he used methamphetamines when he allegedly failed a test in May, and no one can be so stupid as to use the drug — or any other banned substance — while fighting to prove you never had used it in the first place.
On Wednesday, NASCAR said he failed another drug test taken on July 6 that showed positive for meth.
However, later that night, Mayfield’s attorney, John Buric, said a urine sample taken less than an hour after NASCAR’s July 6 test was analyzed by the drug-screening laboratory LabCorp and it showed a negative result for methamphetamines.
NASCAR included the results in a motion Wednesday afternoon in federal court to try to get Mayfield’s suspension reinstated after a federal court judge granted Mayfield a preliminary injunction on July 1 so he could return to racing.
An even more shocking claim was made in NASCAR’s motion when it presented a sworn affidavit from Lisa Mayfield — Jeremy’s stepmother — in which she contends that over a seven-year period beginning in 1998 she saw him snort methamphetamine “at least 30 times” and that he “cooked some of his own” meth before starting to buy it.
Lying in a federal affidavit is perjury and a felony, so why would she lie?
Mayfield offered a reason — a stunning one — during an interview on Sirius satellite radio late Wednesday. He claims she shot and killed his father two years ago.
“That was a lady who was married to my dad who is very, very angry at me. And that’s all going to come out, too. It’s a whole different subject. A lady who pretty much shot and killed my dad (in 2007) …” he told Sirius “Late Shift” hosts Buddy Baker and Nate Ryan of USA Today.
Mayfield’s father, Terry, was 56 when he died from a gunshot wound to the chest in what the Chapel Hill, N.C., medical examiner called a self-inflicted gunshot wound. There was no sign of criminal activity or foul play, according to the sheriff’s report.
Lisa Mayfield testified he had been depressed.
“She’s a very evil lady and obviously can be bought, and her time’s coming,” Mayfield said. “And it’s definitely somebody that doesn’t like me whatsoever and doesn’t deserve to even have the Mayfield last name. … I damn sure won’t call her a stepmom, I tell you that. She never was.”
OK, then. There’s more.
“She’s basically a whore,” he told ESPN.com. “She shot and killed my dad.”
In that interview, Mayfield promised she would be served with a wrongful death lawsuit today (Thursday).
“She knows what we’ve got on her,” Mayfield told ESPN.com. “For her to come out and do this is pretty ballsy.
“Everybody that’s ever known me knows I never, ever have been around her for more than 10 hours of my life,” he said.
And we thought Dale Earnhardt Jr. and his stepmom, Teresa, had differences.
NASCAR suspended Mayfield on May 9 for allegedly testing positive for meth in a test administered on May 1. Mayfield blamed his positive test on the combined use of Adderall for Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder and Claritin-D for allergies.
On July 1, federal judge Graham C. Mullen granted Mayfield a preliminary injunction so that he could return to racing as early as three days later at Daytona International Speedway.
Mayfield didn’t show up for that race, hasn’t entered one since and likely won’t considering the last member of his Mayfield Motorsports operation resigned hours before the latest revelations surfaced Wednesday.
Bobby Wooten, general manager of the first-year team, told The Associated Press his resignation had nothing to do with Mayfield’s ongoing battle with NASCAR over the first failed drug test. He left because he believed Mayfield’s team would never return to a track and Mayfield was preparing to sell its assets.
The nine-year veteran of a North Carolina police department steadfastly defended Mayfield against the drug-use allegations.
“I think Jeremy is telling the truth. I back him 110 percent,” Wooten said. “I don’t believe Jeremy is a drug addict. I do believe he could have taken one too many over-the-counter drugs, and now this situation has popped up. … I have never seen Jeremy under that pretense. And he was around us four and five days a week, 12 hours a day. Typically, if you are an abuser of this particular drug, you can’t go without it for that long of a time. I did not ever see that in Jeremy.”
Wooten said he knows from his time in law enforcement that drug users are capable of hiding the abuse and fooling those around them. But he said since his February hiring, he never suspected Mayfield of being under the influence of an illegal drug.
He testified to that in a sworn affidavit that Mullen took in to consideration when he lifted Mayfield’s suspension.
This story will not have a happy ending for any of the parties.
Had Mayfield accepted NASCAR’s findings — whether innocent or guilty — and entered a rehab program he might have been back racing next year.
But he decided to fight.
And this fight has no end in sight.
I’ll only convict him when NASCAR proves his guilt beyond a reasonable doubt, and now I have doubt.
This is, after all, what NASCAR champions: It’s the American way.