NASCAR chairman arrested for DWI, oxycodone possession

NASCAR community offers best for Brian France; confident in Jim France

NASCAR community offers best for Brian France; confident in Jim France

France has taken a leave absence as chairman and CEO of NASCAR following his Sunday night arrest on charges of driving while intoxicated and criminal possession of oxycodone.

Police pulled over France on Sunday night in Long Island, New York.

Police said at the time he was pulled over France struggled to keep his balance during field sobriety tests, his eyes were red and glassy, and tests showed his blood-alcohol content was almost twice New York's legal limit.

They say officers saw indications France was intoxicated and found the pills during a subsequent search.

The head of the most popular racing series in the USA spent the night in jail - a punch to the gut for a series reeling from slumping attendance and television ratings, and a decline in blockbuster sponsorship deals. Jim France, Brian's uncle, has assumed the chairman and CEO roles for the privately owned company.

On his SiriusXM radio show, NASCAR driver Kevin Harvick embraced the interim leader. I know all of the executives really, really well. I know all of them very, very well.

Brian France apparently kept the president's name out of his mouth.

"We've got to look to our sport's future, what we can change and what we can do next", Busch said. He knows the ins and outs of what's going on to this very minute in the sport, has been around the sport for a long time. Kevin Harvick does not know Jim France very well but he knows that the new interim CEO is a former driver who has strong relationships with numerous NASCAR team owners. She said she also watched as France "fell over his own feet" as he got out of his vehicle. Although many of Brian France's initiatives were progressive and needed in some form, staunch fans have vehemently rejected his vision.

He's introduced a playoff system, overhauled the design of its cars and pushed for diversity within the circuit's predominantly white, male ranks. I'm sure that Brian is disappointed in himself. He appeared increasingly detached from NASCAR over the past several seasons and is rarely seen at a race.

Sabates said France deserves to be welcomed back into NASCAR whenever he's ready. Chief Operating Officer Steve Phelps and executive vice president Steve O'Donnell have tried to clean up NASCAR's mess, but they have been handcuffed like many NASCAR executives by an absence of leadership at the very top. Lesa France Kennedy is ISC's CEO.

It's good to have a racer.

Watkins Glen victor Chase Elliott said on a teleconference Tuesday that he knows Jim France.

As for the off-track news that usurped his victory?

"It's unfortunate, obviously, and he's got some personal issues he's going to attend to", Hamlin said. "I expect them to do fine, and it doesn't change my job, so I'm going to do my thing".

Smith was a longtime NASCAR adversary during Bill France Jr.'s 31-year reign as chairman.

Bruton Smith, executive chairman of Speedway Motorsports Inc., told The Associated Press that the sport will continue to go forward.

"Our sport is big, big, big and it's bigger than just one person", Smith said.

Then we learn that that former World Champion Niki Lauda was days away from death and had to have an emergency lung transplant, that Daniel Ricciardo is leaving Red Bull at the end of the season to join Renault while Fernando Alonso may just possibly go to Indycar next season to chase his dream of the Triple Crown. NASCAR has gone through tough times in recent years and looked to be finally turning things around before France dented the brand's image. "That being said, it's a great sport and we go forward and we all should be very protective of it and be willing to lend a helping hand".

France is a third-generation leader of NASCAR. He was replaced by his uncle, Jim France, 73, who is the younger son of NASCAR founder Bill France Sr.

Several figures associated with the NASCAR industry feel comfortable about Jim France filling that role, given his lengthy involvement in the sport.

Felix Sabates has had at least partial ownership of a top-level NASCAR team since 1989.

Everything here is headline material but perhaps the most serious of all, although the impact will really be felt in the U.S., is the Brian France story.

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