England

Weymouth sidecar racer death at Somerset track accidental

A champion sidecar racer died accidentally while on a test run at a Somerset airfield, an inquest heard.

Nigel Parkinson, 53, from Weymouth in Dorset, was testing a rebuilt 1,000cc machine at Westonzoyland airfield, Somerset, on 11 March when he crashed.

The hearing in Somerset heard he failed to negotiate a bend. Mr Parkinson died at the scene.

Tim Hayden, assistant deputy coroner for Somerset, ruled that the death was accidental.

Barbed wire

The inquest at Bridgwater Town Council's offices heard that Mr Parkinson and pillion rider Graham Clifford were trying to fine-tune the carburettor when they crashed.

They were travelling at less than 30mph, the inquest heard.

Mr Clifford, also from Weymouth, told the hearing that after failing to negotiate a bend, the pair had headed for what they thought was a gap in the hedge.

The gap was covered by a barbed wire fence, which caused massive neck injuries to Mr Parkinson.

Mr Parkinson and Mr Clifford won the 2010 NHCA Sidecar Championship.

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