NASCAR CEO takes leave of absence after arrest, DWI charge

NASCAR CEO takes leave of absence after arrest, DWI charge

Brian France, the CEO of NASCAR, is taking a leave of absence from the company after he was arrested and charged with driving while intoxicated in New York.

France, 56, was stopped in Sag Harbor around 7:30 p.m. on Sunday after he failed to stop at a stop sign, police said Monday. He was intoxicated and had oxycodone pills in his vehicle, according to officials.

NASCAR said in a news release on Monday afternoon that France’s leave of absence is “indefinite,” and that Jim France has taken on the role of interim chairman and CEO, effective immediately. Jim France is Brian’s uncle.

The company previously called France’s arrest a “serious matter.”

Police said France smelled of alcohol and slurred his words during the traffic stop. His eyes were also red and glassy and he struggled to maintain his balance during field sobriety tests, police added.

His blood alcohol content was 0.18. The legal limit in New York is 0.08.

France was arraigned Monday after spending the night in jail. He was released on his own recognizance and is scheduled to appear in court Sept. 14.

NASCAR was founded in 1947 by Bill France Sr. Brian France is his grandson and has been CEO since 2003.