A 28-YEAR-OLD racer who crashed into spectators at an illegal "cruising" event on a Brighouse industrial estate has been jailed for nine months.
Ford Fiesta driver Andrew Speck had just completed an 80-mph sprint race against a Subaru at the late-night gathering when he lost control of his speeding car.
A judge at Bradford Crown Court yesterday watched amateur video footage of the Fiesta as it sped along the road before careering into crowds of people lining the race route.
Prosecutor Freddy Apfel said one teenage spectator fractured his thumb and suffered bruising to his leg while an 18-year-old woman was taken to hospital with cuts and bruises.
Recorder Andrew Dallas hit out at such unregulated and unofficial events and said it was a miracle that no one had been killed that night.
He noted that the late-night gatherings had become a nuisance to people who work at the Armytage Road site and warned those involved that they faced tough sentences.
"It seems to that this was, on any view, an extremely grave offence of its type," said Recorder Dallas.
"To race along this crowded road at night in chaotic conditions was just inviting appalling consequences.
"There were no doubt very serious consequences for the two people who happened to be hit, but it is a miracle that somebody wasn't killed."
Speck, of Peel Avenue, Batley, was traced by police a few hours after the accident in January last year. Earlier this year, he pleaded guilty to dangerous driving.
His barrister Stuart Roberts revealed that although his client had been involved in official drag racing this was the first time he had taken part in such a gathering.
Speck maintained that something happened to the car to make him lose control.
Speck was also banned from driving for two years.