'Arrogant' biker walks free from court after overtaking a car at 110mph pulling a wheelie (From The Northern Echo)
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'Arrogant' biker walks free from court after overtaking a car at 110mph pulling a wheelie
A BIKER who overtook a car at 110mph while pulling a wheelie walked free from court today after his stunt was branded "arrogant" and "extremely dangerous".
A stunned traffic officer watched as Michael John Chester then struggled to bring his powerful Suzuki GSXR under control and back onto two wheels, said Katie Varlow, prosecuting.
She said the camera officer saw the 42-year-old approaching along the A63 southbound, near Sherburn in Elmet, North Yorkshire, shortly after noon on July 7.
“He noticed the motorcyclist travelling towards him on his rear wheel, at a 90 degree angle to the road.”
She added that as the officer started to film the wheelie, Chester overtook a car, still on his back wheel, and continued at speeds reaching 110mph.
Jo Senior, chairman of the bench at Northallerton Magistrates’ Court, said he had come very close to going to prison – but instead imposed a 12 week suspended sentence with 200 hours of unpaid work.
Chester, of Meltham, Holmfirth, West Yorkshire, who admitted dangerous driving, was also banned for 20 months and fined £165.
Eleven motorcyclists have already died on North Yorkshire's roads so far this year - compared to five fatalities during the whole of 2012.
Honour Byford, road safety leader at North Yorkshire County Council, said Chester didn't represent the majority of responsible bikers and condemned his behaviour as “extremely dangerous stunt riding.”
“This kind of showing off and speed riding is not acceptable on public roads – if people want to do that they should book a track day.
“There have been too many motorcycle deaths already this year and you could have made it one more.”
David Tyrer, mitigating, told the court Chester disputed the fact that he was at a 90 degree angle during the overtaking manoevre and said the road was not busy.
“He accepts his actions were foolish in the extreme,” he added.
Speaking afterwards, Dave Brown, from North Yorkshire Police’s Mobile Safety Camera Team, said: “This is a classic case of someone with complete contempt for motoring laws. This dangerous act not only shows arrogance, but a complete lack of concern for the safety of other road users.
“Mr Chester should count himself lucky to be able to attend court, the outcome could have been far worse for him and his family.
"The message should now be clear to others who flout the law that our mobile safety camera has the technology, and our officers have the determination to bring law-breakers to justice.”
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