TWO drivers have gone on trial accused of racing their vehicles shortly before a crash which resulted in the death of an elderly Brighouse woman.
Prosecutor Jonathon Gibson told a jury at Bradford Crown Court yesterday that it was the Crown's case that Janine Scarfe and Sheldon Brooks had been "effectively racing, showing off and driving too close together."
Scarfe, 24, of Langdale Avenue, Wyke, lost control of her Vauxhall Corsa on a sweeping bend.
After the vehicle veered on to the wrong side of Highmoor Lane, Brighouse, it struck a Peugeot 307 coming in the opposite direction.
Mr Gibson said 68-year-old Dawn Routledge, who was a front seat passenger in the Peugeot, suffered a fatal rupture of the heart.
The jury was told that Scarfe and the other two women in the car with her arranged to meet factory worker Sheldon Brooks.
Scarfe's Corsa was driven to a lay-by on Walton Lane where Brooks arrived in a black Peugeot 306 with a work colleague.
Mr Gibson alleged
that the two drivers accelerated away hard and drove at high speed along the road known locally as the "mad mile'".
After the collision between Scarfe's car and the oncoming Peugeot Brooks braked hard and was able to avoid the crash.
Mr Gibson said he stopped and contacted the emergency services but then left the scene.
Brooks, 24, of Windermere Road, Carnforth, was not arrested until September last year.
He told police the Corsa was being driven at up to 100mph and he was doing about 70mph, but he denied driving too close or racing with the other car.
Scarfe, who was herself injured in the crash, told police that she had been driving at about 60mph and the black Peugeot was very close behind her.
Both Scarfe and Brooks have pleaded not guilty to a charge of causing Mrs Routledge's death by dangerous driving. The trial is expected to last about five days.