Leicester

Donington Park crash: Christian Devereux died 'almost instantly'

A racing driver died almost instantly when his Mini Cooper crashed head-on in a vintage touring car race, an inquest has heard.

Christian Devereux was killed after his 1965 car collided with a Ford Mustang at Donington Park.

The 50-year-old, of Chiswick, west London, was reaching the end of the race last May when his Mini Cooper S entered the track's Coppice corner.

The coroner at the inquest went on to make safety recommendations.

The inquest heard that a 1965 Mustang being driven a short distance ahead by Ben Beighton had spun and ended up almost stationary, facing the wrong way in the centre of the tarmac.

Image caption A racegoer photographed the Mini Cooper S on the Donington Park track before the crash

The Mustang driver told Rutland and North Leicestershire Coroners' Court: "I saw him heading to my left and then it seemed almost at the last moment he changed his mind and tried to pass me on the other side and we collided."

Recording a verdict of accidental death, assistant coroner Robert Chapman said he now planned to write to the Motor Sports Association (MSA) asking it to determine whether it was appropriate for all drivers under the organisation's remit to have to wear frontal head restraints.

An FHR device is fastened around the driver's neck, and tethers the helmet to the shoulder straps to keep the driver's head more stable in the event of a crash.

Mr Chapman said: "Quite plainly, if Mr Devereux had been wearing an FHR it would have reduced the movement of his head and may well have saved his life."

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