Big Names in NASCAR React to DWI Arrest of Brian France

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The NASCAR CEO was arrested Sunday night in The Hamptons and charged with driving under the influence (DUI) and illegal possession of narcotics (oxycodone).

Police pulled over France on Sunday night in Long Island, New York. Officers saw indications of intoxication and found the pills during a subsequent search, police said.

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.

The recent arrest of NASCAR Chairman and CEO Brian France has left many fans and racing figures wondering about the future of the sport.

"Obviously it's disappointing news, no way around that", Dale Earnhardt Jr. said on his podcast, the Dale Jr. "It's very disappointing, and I'm sure that Brian is disappointed in himself".

But as viewership has declined, sponsors have pulled out of NASCAR and Brian France has not made himself available to the public. "So I'm wishing that on him".

NASCAR says it takes France's arrest "as a serious matter and will issue a statement after we have all of the facts". "I like Brian OK and it's a rotten shame he did this, but people sometimes do things that they shouldn't do. 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".

Denny Hamlin was asked about the incident while making a visit to the Washington Redskins training camp earlier this week.

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"I haven't ever had any issues with Jim", Elliott said.

In the same call, Brian France praised his uncle several times in lauding sports auto series IMSA and NASCAR's recent acquisition of ARCA, a low-level stock vehicle series.

There were a few exceptions to the rule, such as part-time NASCAR driver Justin Marks, who sent out a tweet Monday that read, "It's time for someone to step up to the plate". His uncle, Jim France, has assumed the role of NASCAR's interim chairman.

Vehicle owner Joe Gibbs told ESPN earlier this week that he is giving Jim France his full support.

Watkins Glen victor Chase Elliott said on a teleconference Tuesday that he knows Jim France. A request by The Associated Press to speak to Jim France was not immediately answered.

Elsewhere, the British Touring Car Championship has bowed to the inevitable and will be introducing hybrids into the series in 2022 and Mazda in the United States has pulled the plug on its longstanding Road to Indy programme.

On his SiriusXM radio show, NASCAR driver Kevin Harvick embraced the interim leader.

"It will be important for NASCAR leadership to reassure key partners that the sport is in good hands and is positively moving forward", said Poston, who is now president of consulting firm Tuckahoe Strategies. "It's not like he's hands-off". "Whenever he finishes what he needs to do, we all at NASCAR need to welcome him back with open arms". And he's been around and knows how that went. "That's the most important thing". "I apologize to our fans, our industry and my family for the impact of my actions last night", France said in a statement.

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