Dan Carter loses Land Rover deal over drink drive incident
All Black world cup winner says he has had to 'front up' to sponsors and 'understands' the decision to drop him
World cup winning rugby star Dan Carter has been dropped by his sponsor Land Rover after he was caught drink driving in Paris last week.
The former All Black fly-half apologised for a "massive error of judgement" after he was found to be almost twice the legal limit when he was pulled over on Wednesday night. He has now confirmed that the incident cost him an endorsement deal.
Writing on his Facebook page the 34-year-old, who now plays for Racing 92 in France, said: "Over the last few days my management and I have had to front up to my sponsors. Not surprisingly, Land Rover, who for good reason have zero tolerance towards drink driving, have ended their relationship with me.
"I understand this completely and am disappointed I put them in this position."
According to the New Zealand Herald, Carter was stopped for speeding on the Champs-Elysees and did not have his licence with him when he was pulled over. "French rugby journalist Richard Escot said he understood Carter had drunk around four glasses of red wine at a dinner with his club and was not on a big night out," adds the paper.
Carter, voted World Player of the Year three times, retired from international rugby after the 2015 World Cup and moved to France to play in the French league. He was recruited as a brand ambassador for the Jaguar Land Rover brand last year, says the Daily Telegraph.
The deal was only possible after his retirement, notes the NZ Herald. "The All Blacks are sponsored by Ford, which rules out current players from endorsing competing automobiles."
The incident doesn't appear to have damaged Carter's standing in his home country. He "had a squeaky clean image" until the incident, reports the New Zealand website Stuff, but his contrition in the aftermath has stood him in good stead. "To his credit, Carter hasn't dodged the controversy," says Stuff.