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Father-and-son Mazda MX-5 racers banned after "abhorrent" behaviour

Father-and-son Mazda MX-5 drivers Jason and Callum Greatrex have been banned from racing following a National Court disciplinary hearing that examined several incidents at an ill-tempered September Donington Park meeting.

Jason Greatrex

Greatrex Sr was a regular frontrunner in this year’s British Racing & Sports Car Club MX-5 Championship for Mk1 models of the sportscar and was joined in Leicestershire by his son.

But the pair both tangled with points leader Steve Foden in the opening Donington race when Foden returned to the track after going off following a mechanical issue.

According to his report of the hearing, chair of the panel Tony Scott Andrews said that the clerk examining these clashes had already received written and verbal information that the Greatrexes were “out to get Steve Foden”.

Both drivers were disqualified from the meeting and handed six penalty points on their licences.

However, when Greatrex Jr was informed of this, per the report, he “used abusive language to the clerk, left the room continuing to swear and, on leaving the building, slammed the door with such force that it caused some damage to the door and wall”.

Both appealed the clerk’s decision to the stewards, who overturned Greatrex Jr’s penalty but upheld Greatrex Sr’s, meaning his championship hopes were over.

Greatrex Jr was then summoned in front of the officials due to his earlier response to the penalty and he was disqualified from the meeting again.

“On returning to his awning by bicycle, he passed the Foden awning, stopped and made threatening comments,” continued Scott Andrews’ report.

“He then cycled away and returned to confront and be abusive to a Foden team member, which culminated in Greatrex spitting in that person’s face.”

Callum Greatrex

Photo by: Mick Walker

Callum Greatrex

Greatrex Jr said a team member had made a “rude hand gesture” to him and, later when Foden’s car was passing his awning towards the assembly area, the report said he “caused the car to stop then picked up his bicycle and threw it at the car and proceeded to kick the door. His father is also said to have kicked the car.”

Both Greatrexes apologised for their actions to the court, but received bans of varying lengths.

Greatrex Jr was banned for five years, although the final three are suspended. He has also been fined £1000, and must pay £250 in costs.

“The court considers his actions to be utterly unacceptable in every respect, in particular the abhorrent act of spitting in someone’s face,” said Scott Andrews.

“The court finds it difficult to accept that those appalling actions were committed by the apologetic and contrite young man who appears before them today.”

Greatrex Sr, meanwhile, was banned for a year, the second six months of which is suspended. He was also fined £1000 and must pay £250 in costs.

“The court accepts that his actions in kicking Foden’s car were entirely out of character,” said Scott Andrews.

“The court accepts his apology and genuine sense of contrition, especially after so many years of participation in and contribution to motorsport.”

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