Pedal car grand prix chief's 'life flashed before his eyes' in Formula 5000 race car near miss

Daily Echo: Race director Steve Fowler jumping out of the way of Barry le Prevost's Formula 5000 car. Race director Steve Fowler jumping out of the way of Barry le Prevost's Formula 5000 car.

A shocked race director said he could have been killed or seriously injured after he was almost hit by a racing car.

Thousands of people had packed Ringwood town centre to watch the British Pedal Car Grand Prix on Sunday afternoon, which sees roads closed as competitors weave through the streets in homemade pedal cars.

A parade lap before the main event was led by Barry le Prevost, owner of the nearby Lamb Inn, who was driving a vintage Formula 5000 car.

Daily Echo: All our pictures of the British Pedal Car Grand Prix 2014 in Ringwood

But despite organisers asking him to drive slowly, in video footage that has since emerged the vehicle can be seen suddenly accelerating towards race director Steve Fowler, who was forced to jump into a crash barrier to avoid being struck.

He said: “I was roughly 30 or 40 yards away from him and I just couldn’t believe how fast he went.

“I don’t know what speed he went but I saw my life come up in front of me. I just managed to get out of the way before the front wheels clipped me. I just jumped into the crash barrier.”

Mr Fowler added: “There were pedestrians two to three deep just lining up by the crash barrier.

“It could have been so much worse. There were children, families and pushchairs.”

When asked about the incident, Mr le Prevost admitted he had been doing ‘a little bit of a burnout’ when the incident occurred and that the near-miss had ‘turned his stomach’.

He said: “I saw him at the last minute. I did not expect him.

“He decided to come out when I was travelling at quite a fair old speed.”

A spokesperson for the British Pedal Car Grand Prix said Mr le Prevost had been asked prior to the event to drive slowly.

He added: “The organising committee of this year’s British Pedal Car Grand Prix deeply regrets that the actions of one person could potentially put at risk the wellbeing of the general public and volunteers at this year’s race.

“Every effort will be made to avoid any and all risks at future events.”

Comments (14)

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11:37am Tue 15 Jul 14

Big Mac says...

He should be prosecuted for dangerous driving, end of.
He should be prosecuted for dangerous driving, end of. Big Mac
  • Score: 4

11:39am Tue 15 Jul 14

Rhombus says...

Stupid old fool doesn't realise you can't just improvise in this kind of situation. Peoples lives are at stake. The moment got to him and he got carried away. So much torque in that little racer and very little reaction time and concentration in the old duffers brain.
Stupid old fool doesn't realise you can't just improvise in this kind of situation. Peoples lives are at stake. The moment got to him and he got carried away. So much torque in that little racer and very little reaction time and concentration in the old duffers brain. Rhombus
  • Score: 2

11:52am Tue 15 Jul 14

saint61 says...

.....and everyone in the Forest blames the cyclists!
.....and everyone in the Forest blames the cyclists! saint61
  • Score: 5

12:10pm Tue 15 Jul 14

Rhombus says...

saint61 wrote:
.....and everyone in the Forest blames the cyclists!
lets face it. He nearly took out a donkey .
[quote][p][bold]saint61[/bold] wrote: .....and everyone in the Forest blames the cyclists![/p][/quote]lets face it. He nearly took out a donkey . Rhombus
  • Score: 0

12:11pm Tue 15 Jul 14

Chunshine says...

Umm..... what was the guy doing walking on the track when a vehicle was approaching anyway? Both to blame here, both as dumb as each other!
Umm..... what was the guy doing walking on the track when a vehicle was approaching anyway? Both to blame here, both as dumb as each other! Chunshine
  • Score: 11

12:21pm Tue 15 Jul 14

sotonwinch09 says...

Big Mac wrote:
He should be prosecuted for dangerous driving, end of.
Can't be prosecuted for this offence on a closed road.
[quote][p][bold]Big Mac[/bold] wrote: He should be prosecuted for dangerous driving, end of.[/p][/quote]Can't be prosecuted for this offence on a closed road. sotonwinch09
  • Score: 2

12:32pm Tue 15 Jul 14

Paramjit Bahia says...

Racing cars are not meant to be driven on the streets but on proper motor racing circuits. Organisers of the event should have known better. Hope they have learnt something and won't be so stupid in future.
Racing cars are not meant to be driven on the streets but on proper motor racing circuits. Organisers of the event should have known better. Hope they have learnt something and won't be so stupid in future. Paramjit Bahia
  • Score: -7

1:18pm Tue 15 Jul 14

elvisimo says...

don't stand in the middle of the road when a car is coming????
don't stand in the middle of the road when a car is coming???? elvisimo
  • Score: 11

1:24pm Tue 15 Jul 14

joiner123 says...

As a "race director" he should know better than to walk across a live circuit.
As a "race director" he should know better than to walk across a live circuit. joiner123
  • Score: 12

1:30pm Tue 15 Jul 14

Torchie1 says...

Paramjit Bahia wrote:
Racing cars are not meant to be driven on the streets but on proper motor racing circuits. Organisers of the event should have known better. Hope they have learnt something and won't be so stupid in future.
Monaco, Le Mans, Sepang and Montreal are amongst an impressive number of street circuits used in motor racing across the globe.
[quote][p][bold]Paramjit Bahia[/bold] wrote: Racing cars are not meant to be driven on the streets but on proper motor racing circuits. Organisers of the event should have known better. Hope they have learnt something and won't be so stupid in future.[/p][/quote]Monaco, Le Mans, Sepang and Montreal are amongst an impressive number of street circuits used in motor racing across the globe. Torchie1
  • Score: 9

3:19pm Tue 15 Jul 14

burgerboy says...

Paramjit Bahia wrote:
Racing cars are not meant to be driven on the streets but on proper motor racing circuits. Organisers of the event should have known better. Hope they have learnt something and won't be so stupid in future.
And that tw*t Cameron wants a steet racing circuit in London.....It says it all.
[quote][p][bold]Paramjit Bahia[/bold] wrote: Racing cars are not meant to be driven on the streets but on proper motor racing circuits. Organisers of the event should have known better. Hope they have learnt something and won't be so stupid in future.[/p][/quote]And that tw*t Cameron wants a steet racing circuit in London.....It says it all. burgerboy
  • Score: -3

5:28pm Tue 15 Jul 14

Big Mac says...

sotonwinch09 wrote:
Big Mac wrote:
He should be prosecuted for dangerous driving, end of.
Can't be prosecuted for this offence on a closed road.
Well, at least for the ponytail then.
[quote][p][bold]sotonwinch09[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Big Mac[/bold] wrote: He should be prosecuted for dangerous driving, end of.[/p][/quote]Can't be prosecuted for this offence on a closed road.[/p][/quote]Well, at least for the ponytail then. Big Mac
  • Score: 4

5:52pm Tue 15 Jul 14

Rhombus says...

Torchie1 wrote:
Paramjit Bahia wrote:
Racing cars are not meant to be driven on the streets but on proper motor racing circuits. Organisers of the event should have known better. Hope they have learnt something and won't be so stupid in future.
Monaco, Le Mans, Sepang and Montreal are amongst an impressive number of street circuits used in motor racing across the globe.
the spectators were far too close to the road with no crash barriers all those "real tracks" have. Remember that a race car has high gears causing it to stall at low speeds/revs. This guy only needed to tap the throttle and its did as it was built to do. Plodding at 3 mph is ridiculous and would take some control to maintain. The old boy just thought he would show off and got carried away. The point is he done it off his own back without warning and against the race directors planning.
[quote][p][bold]Torchie1[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Paramjit Bahia[/bold] wrote: Racing cars are not meant to be driven on the streets but on proper motor racing circuits. Organisers of the event should have known better. Hope they have learnt something and won't be so stupid in future.[/p][/quote]Monaco, Le Mans, Sepang and Montreal are amongst an impressive number of street circuits used in motor racing across the globe.[/p][/quote]the spectators were far too close to the road with no crash barriers all those "real tracks" have. Remember that a race car has high gears causing it to stall at low speeds/revs. This guy only needed to tap the throttle and its did as it was built to do. Plodding at 3 mph is ridiculous and would take some control to maintain. The old boy just thought he would show off and got carried away. The point is he done it off his own back without warning and against the race directors planning. Rhombus
  • Score: 3

1:38am Wed 16 Jul 14

Paramjit Bahia says...

Torchie1 wrote:
Paramjit Bahia wrote:
Racing cars are not meant to be driven on the streets but on proper motor racing circuits. Organisers of the event should have known better. Hope they have learnt something and won't be so stupid in future.
Monaco, Le Mans, Sepang and Montreal are amongst an impressive number of street circuits used in motor racing across the globe.
Obviously the fact that when street circuits are used for motor racing they have safety barriers installed and safety standrads acceptable to FIA stewards, which most certainly was not the case with streets of Ringwood.

Also unlike the race director of Ringwood event official's stay in safe areas and do not try to cross race tracks when cars are starting to race.

Are you sure that whole of Le Mans 24 hour circuit is public roads?
[quote][p][bold]Torchie1[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Paramjit Bahia[/bold] wrote: Racing cars are not meant to be driven on the streets but on proper motor racing circuits. Organisers of the event should have known better. Hope they have learnt something and won't be so stupid in future.[/p][/quote]Monaco, Le Mans, Sepang and Montreal are amongst an impressive number of street circuits used in motor racing across the globe.[/p][/quote]Obviously the fact that when street circuits are used for motor racing they have safety barriers installed and safety standrads acceptable to FIA stewards, which most certainly was not the case with streets of Ringwood. Also unlike the race director of Ringwood event official's stay in safe areas and do not try to cross race tracks when cars are starting to race. Are you sure that whole of Le Mans 24 hour circuit is public roads? Paramjit Bahia
  • Score: 0
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