British Touring Car Championship driver Frank Wrathall has been sentenced to 21 months in prison after pleading guilty to careless driving at Liverpool Crown Court.
The 27-year-old from Preston in Lancashire was involved in an accident on the 14th May 2012 which resulted in the death of 47-year-old father-of-one Paul Fingleton.
The case had first been scheduled to be heard in July 2013, but was postponed. Wrathall had originally been charged with causing death by dangerous driving and last month pleaded guilty to carless driving.
The Dynojet driver has also been disqualified from driving for four years.
Francis McEntee, prosecuting, said: “CCTV evidence is patently clear – the defendant came up from behind Mr Fingleton, overtook him and cut across him, causing the collision. The prosecution can say with a degree of confidence that the defendant was clearly unaware of Mr Fingleton’s presence.”
Wrathall had been on the phone to his girlfriend at the time of the incident, and mobile phone records showed that he had been engaged in a seven-minute conversation at the time of the incident in the van, which had no bluetooth hands-free facilities.
Wrathall’s family-run Dynojet team will not appear in the BTCC this season, having sold their car and assets to the incoming United Autosports team.