NASACAR drivers have shared their opinions which range from shock to optimism about the future of the sport. This followed the stepping down of NASACAR CEO and Chairman Brian France after being arrested over the weekend.
Police pulled over France on Sunday night in Long Island, New York. He was arrested for driving while intoxicated (DWI) and illegal possession of the opioid medication oxycodone.
Brian France was released Monday morning then shared later in the day he was taking a taking an open-ended leave of absence from the auto racing company to deal and sort out his personal affairs.
France’s arrest made network news throughout the US following Chase Elliott’s first Cup Series win at Watkins Glen (New York). NASCAR has gone through tough times in recent years and looked to be finally turning things around before France dented the brand’s image. Brian’s uncle Jim France who is the executive vice president and vice chairman at NASCAR will be promoted to interim Chairman and CEO.
NASCAR Drivers Open Up
Soon after the news of France’s arrest was reported on Monday many NASCAR drivers shared their opinions about the situation through various social media channels. 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 many of the NASCAR team owners.
In a statement, Harvick said
It’s good to have a racer. It’s not like he’s hands-off, he knows the ins and outs of what’s going on to this very minute in this sport, has been around this sport a long time, and that’s what you need, that racing perspective of just making sure we stick with the roots of what made NASCAR racing what it is, and he’s been around and knows how that went
During a teleconference after his win Elliot said remained positive stating that he expects Jim France will do his job well and that nothing will personally change for him as he was going to concentrate on his racing and nothing else.
NASCAR drivers know how important it is for the company to rebuild its image and that will place a lot of responsibility on the new CEO. Dale Earnhardt Jr. said in his podcast that it was tough to lose Brian France but the leadership team at NASCAR was very experience and would be able to lead the company forward.