A driver who had never held a licence refused to pull over for police while hitting more than 170km/h at night with his headlights off, a court has heard.
Matthew Oakley, 42, of Cemetery Road, Terang, pleaded guilty in Warrnambool Magistrates Court yesterday to reckless conduct endangering serious injury, failing to stop for police, fraudulent use of a registration label, driving an unregistered vehicle and two counts of unlicensed driving.
Oakley was fined $2500 and banned from getting a licence for 18 months.
Magistrate Steve Myall said Oakley had driven at high speed, at night and with his headlights turned off.
He urged Oakley to get a licence when his disqualification ended and warned him that if he continued to drive before then he would end up in jail.
Police said they only caught up with Oakley when his Holden Commodore sedan’s engine seized after the radiator split.
When officers came across Oakley’s vehicle on the west side of Camperdown it was stopped on the Princes Highway, on the wrong side of the road and facing oncoming traffic.
Officers first noticed Oakley’s car at 12.20am on April 28 near Mackinnon’s Bridge on the Princes Highway.
He was travelling at 114km/h, but by the time police did a U-turn and tried to take up a position behind Oakley, his vehicle was about 400 metres ahead.
The officer lost ground on Oakley despite travelling at 150km/h in poor visibility on a dark and cloudy night.
Oakley’s speed was estimated at more than 170km/h.
The officer followed Oakley for about eight minutes before coming across the stationary vehicle on the wrong side of the road without its headlights on.
The Commodore had radiator and engine damage and checks revealed Oakley had never held a driver’s licence.
He told police he panicked and attempted to lose them by turning off his headlights before his engine seized from overheating. He admitted to driving “at maybe 160km/h”.
On June 18 police again intercepted Oakley driving while unlicensed.