Two-time Indy 500 winner Al Unser Jr was arrested early Monday morning in the city of Avon, Indiana, and charged with operating a vehicle while intoxicated (OWI). It marks the third time the Harding Steinbrenner Racing driver coach has been arrested for alcohol-related driving offenses in the last two decades.
“The entire Harding Steinbrenner Racing organization is saddened to learn of Al Unser Jr’s arrest on an OWI charge,” the team said. “Alcoholism is a disease and a continuing battle for those struggling with it. At this time, we do support Al in any way he needs.”
Unser Jr’s ongoing battle with alcoholism had taken a positive turn prior to the latest arrest. A smoker for most of his adult life, the son of four-time Indy 500 winner Al Unser quit the practice as part of a new commitment to improving his health. The culmination of those efforts came earlier in the year when the 57-year-old IndyCar legend completed his first 5K run.