A dangerous driver left his "lifelong friend" behind after he was fatally injured in a crash, a court has heard.

Craig Norman, 45, had been racing James Dickson at high speeds on the way into Little Hulton on Sunday, June 19 this year when Mr Dickson’s car spun out of control and crashed

Mr Dickson, 37, died of his injuries and Manchester Crown Court heard how Norman’s "appalling" driving had played its part in bringing about the tragedy.

Bob Sastry, prosecuting, said: “This was competitive racing on a public highway.

“Not prolonged or persistent but nevertheless a case of very bad driving".

Mr Sastry told the court how at around 8.45pm that evening Norman, of Longshaw Drive, Little Hulton, had been out driving in his partner's Audi which he had taken without her consent and despite being disqualified.

Along Manchester Road East he noticed a Fiat 500 with his friend James Dickson who he had known since childhood inside.

After exchanging words at a set of traffic lights, a race ensued between the pair which saw Norman reach speeds of up to 70mph and roads bordered by houses and pedestrian crossings.

Mr Dickson reached speeds up more than 90pmh and crashed after hitting a Toyota Argo and bollards.

Though his friend was clearly badly hurt, Norman drove away rather than stopping to help.

Mr Dickson later died of a fatal head injury.

Norman was arrested on July 1 and was found guilty of causing death by dangerous driving after a trial at Manchester Crown Court.

Mr Sastry read out a statement from Mr Dickson’s family laying out the devastation they had suffered as a result of their loss and describing the 37-year-old as having a "heart of gold".

Michael James, defending, argued that Mr Dickson’s death had been caused "not by any direct application of violence or force" and said that the victim himself should not have been driving in that manner.

He said: “Mr Norman was of course driving at high speeds, he of course drove through a red light but he was not involved in overtaking other vehicles.”

Mr James told the court Norman deeply regretted the loss of his friend but was glad no one else had been seriously injured.

He added that Norman was already receiving treatment from the community mental health team and that he has to take medication after being stabbed earlier this year, which will make a prison sentence much more difficult for him.

But Judge Timothy Smith remined the court of the fatal consequences that Norman had helped bring about, particularly by his failure to help the injured Mr Dickson.

He said: “Having seen what happened, you made no attempt to stop and help your lifelong friend, you simply drove off home.”

He added: “Mr Dickson should not have been driving in that manner but nor should you.”

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Judge Smith also pointed out that Norman’s conduct during the trial had not helped his case.

He said: “You have demonstrated absolutely no remorse for your actions that night.

Judge Smith sentenced Norman to 14 years in prison and banned him from the roads for eight years.

Police Sergeant Louise Warhurst, of Greater Manchester Police's Serious Collision Investigation Unit, said: “It is really difficult to comprehend the impact of Craig Norman’s reckless and ultimately fatal actions.

"Situations like this are exactly the reason we are doing so much work to ensure that Greater Manchester’s roads are safer for us all so that fewer families have to receive this tragic news.

"He not only showed no regard for anyone but himself during the incident, but he has not since offered anything in the way of genuine remorse of compassion for his inexcusable actions.

"It’s a sad but very real part of our job that we often see the devastating impact of criminally dangerous behaviour on our roads.

"But these tragic events would largely be avoidable if everyone took extra care for those around them who are also wanting to use our streets safely."