NASCAR chairman arrested for DWI, oxycodone possession

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FILE – In this Jan. 23, 2017, file photo, Brian France, Chairman of NASCAR, gives opening remarks prior to an announcement of NASCAR’s approach to modernizing its series with a new format, in Charlotte, N.C. NASCAR chairman Brian France has been arrested in New York’s Hamptons for driving while intoxicated and criminal possession of oxycodone. […]

SAG HARBOR, N.Y. (AP) – NASCAR mogul Brian France was arrested in New York’s Hamptons for driving while intoxicated and criminal possession of oxycodone after he was seen blowing through a stop sign, police said.

France, the chairman and CEO of the auto racing behemoth, was arraigned Monday at Sag Harbor Village Justice Court after a night in jail and released on his own recognizance.

Information on a lawyer who could comment on France’s behalf was not immediately available, nor was information on his next court date.

NASCAR said in a statement that it takes France’s arrest “as a serious matter and will issue a statement after we have all of the facts.”

France, 56, was pulled over and arrested about 7:30 p.m. Sunday near the Sag Harbor waterfront. Officers saw indications of intoxication and found the pills during a subsequent search, police said.

TMZ first reported the arrest.

France has led NASCAR since 2003. He’s a third-generation leader of the company, which his late grandfather, Bill France Sr., founded in 1948.

France called into a radio show last month to refute a report that his family was looking into selling its racing properties, saying his family was “locked and loaded in its dedication to NASCAR.”

France was involved in a 2006 incident in Daytona Beach, Florida, when a police report stated he crashed his Lexus into a tree after entering a restaurant parking lot.

France later told an officer called to his home that he was drinking a soda and “bumped into something.”

But a witness called 911 and gave police a statement that claimed she saw France driving at a “very reckless speed,” and claimed France’s car hit the tree after hitting a parked car.

She said she also watched as France “fell over his own feet” as he got out of his car.

Her statement was not attached to the police report, and the Daytona Beach police chief later investigated whether France was given special treatment by authorities.

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