Michael Annett placed on probation

Updated: February 12, 2011, 11:42 AM ET
By David Newton | ESPN.com

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. -- NASCAR on Friday placed Rusty Wallace Racing Nationwide Series driver Michael Annett on probation for the remainder of the year.

Annett was arrested early on the morning of Feb. 6 and charged with driving while intoxicated, texting while driving, failure to reduce speed and resisting an officer in the Mooresville, N.C., area. NASCAR placed Annett under probation under Section 12-1 of the rulebook referring to actions detrimental to stock car racing.

In addition, Annett will be evaluated by a certified substance abuse professional at the governing body's discretion and subject to random alcohol and drug testing.

According to the police report Annett, 24, was arrested between 1:30 a.m. and 2 a.m. and had a blood alcohol content of .32, four times the legal limit of .08.

Team owner Rusty Wallace, also an ESPN analyst, said his organization would make Annett undergo a comprehensive alcohol awareness program, perform a year-long community service program and face additional internal sanctions.

But Wallace said Annett would be allowed to drive the No. 62 car beginning with next week's Nationwide race at Daytona International Speedway.

"It's something I don't take lightly at all," Wallace said. "It's embarrassing for everybody. He's hurt his team, himself and everybody. He's tore up. He's really remorseful. It was a huge wake-up call for him."

Annett, a native of Des Moines, Iowa, drove the past two Nationwide Series seasons for Bob Germain. He finished 10th and 13th in points before moving to RWR for this season to replace Brendan Gaughan. He has no wins and six top 10s in 71 races.

"I am deeply remorseful for my actions and my extreme lack of judgment," Annett said last week in a statement. "I let down my team, my sponsors, my fans and my family. I sincerely apologize to everyone that I hurt.

"This was truly a life-changing moment for me," he said. "Despite all of the negativity that will undoubtedly arise from it, I'm going to strive to use this incident as the impetus to make a lot of positive changes in my life."

David Newton covers NASCAR for ESPN.com. He can be reached at dnewtonespn@aol.com.

David Newton | email

ESPN Carolina Panthers reporter

ALSO SEE