Problem of North Wales Evo Triangle speeders highlighted in court

Reporter:

Court Reporter

Thrill-seekers from all over the UK are converging on rural roads in North Wales – known as The Evo Triangle - and using them as racetracks, a court has been told.

A biker caught riding at 100mph on the Denbigh Moors, close to the Brenig Reservoir, has now been disqualified from driving.

Gas engineer Stephen Ramsay, 59, admitted breaking the 60mph speed limit on the B4501 on his new black Honda VFR.

He told a Flintshire court he could not believe his speed and the bike, which he had saved for years to buy, had been immediately sold.

Ramsay, of Grouville Drive in Woodthorpe, Nottingham, said he feared a driving ban would cost him his job because he needed to be available 24 hours a day to deal with gas emergencies.

He was banned from driving for 28 days and fined £500 with £85 costs and a £50 surcharge.

He said he had never heard the name Evo Triangle until the policeman who booked him wrote it down and he Googled it when he got home to find out what it was.

At Flintshire Magistrates Court prosecutor Brian Robinson asked the court to take a tough stance because he said the public needed to be protected.

Riding at 100mph would not give a rider time to “react to the unexpected”, he said.

He suggested an immediate ban for what he termed the “grossly excessive” speed.

“This was a B road where families walking and driving in the area are being put at risk by the unreasonable actions of some riders and drivers who are converging  from all over the UK to use these roads as racetracks as part of the so-called Evo Triangle,” he told the Mold court.

“There have already been fatalities on this route this year and a motorcyclist from outside the North Wales area was tragically killed on this road in June.”

Mr Robinson asked the magistrates to “protect the public from this type of utterly irresponsible behaviour” by sending out a clear message “that this sort of speed will not be tolerated”.

Sentencing guidelines suggested a court should consider an ediate disqualification for any speed above 91mph, he said.

An officer of the roads policing department saw Ramsay’s motorcycle approach and confirmed its speed at 100mph using a prolaser handheld speedmeter.

Ramsay, who represented himself, said he had a clean driving licence and had been a keen motorcyclist for many years.

He was not a speeder, had never been stopped before and had never had a ticket in 40 years.

That day he had been out riding and he accepted the speed reported. “I didn’t know it was that fast,” he said.

“It was a new-ish bike to me,” he said. He had saved for six years and taken out a loan to buy it – but when he got home after the offence he advertised it for sale and it had gone within days.

He said he had pulled up to a lay-by to wait for a friend when the police officer approached and told him the speed. “I was absolutely shocked when he told me,” he said.

“It made me feel bad. I cannot get over what I have done. I have never been a speeder at all.”

He said he condemned people who did speed “and give us all a bad name”.

If he was banned, he said, he would probably lose his job and at his age he might not get another one.

“I may be unemployed until I get my state pension at 66,” he said.

“I ask the court to show me some mercy.”

It was not his normal type of riding. He had accelerated up a hill when the road was clear and there was no other traffic on the road.

He said it could dramatically affect the rest of his life through “one moment of stupidity.”

Magistrates said it was a grossly excessive speed in an area renowned for speeding motorbikes.

It was a Sunday when people would be out walking, riding their bicycles and walking their dogs.

They said they would not be fulfilling their public duty if they did not disqualify him from driving.

The so-called Evo Triangle is one of North Wales' most scenic routes but it has been described as a "life-size Scalextric" as drivers flock to it to drive at speed – sometimes with disastrous results.

The ‘triangle’ – named  after a magazine popular with motorists - takes in the A5, the A543 and the B4501 roads.

Some farmers say they have stopped moving livestock across the road at weekends because it was getting too dangerous.

They also worry about taking tractors on the road.

 

Email:

it@nwn.co.uk

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