Analyst LaJoie suspended indefinitely

CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- NASCAR and ESPN have each suspended racing analyst and former driver Randy LaJoie indefinitely for violating its substance-abuse policy.

In an interview Tuesday on SIRIUS XM Radio, LaJoie said he smoked marijuana once in May.

LaJoie was tested by NASCAR because he wanted to become a spotter for one of Joe Gibbs Racing's Nationwide Series teams.

He has not competed at any of NASCAR's top three national levels since 2006 and has been an analyst for NASCAR the past several years.

"I take full responsibility for my actions and respect NASCAR's decision," LaJoie said in a statement. "I wish to apologize to my wife and family first, to NASCAR, to my fans and to the various media companies which I work including ESPN, Sirius Radio and Performance Racing Network. I have this day sought to enroll in a substance abuse program. My use of marijuana was an isolated incident following the Coca Cola 600.

"I plan to follow the recommendations of the substance abuse counselor and suggestions of NASCAR and hope that someday I can prove to NASCAR and all the people with whom I associate that I have taken such steps to see that instances such as this do not reoccur."

LaJoie raced in 44 races over 12 years in NASCAR's elite Cup Series. His success was in the Nationwide Series, where he won 15 races over 19 seasons. LaJoie hasn't raced at any of NASCAR's top three national levels since 2006.

NASCAR toughened its drug testing policy before last season, and in May 2009 suspended driver Jeremy Mayfield for failing a random drug test. He fought it through the court system, but a federal judge dismissed the case last month.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.