Classic car driver, 80, dies after hitting lorry on London to Brighton rally

An 80-year-old classic car lover has died after his 1903 motor hit a lorry as he competed in the London to Brighton rally.

The man was driving a Knox Runabout Old Porcupine, one of the original horseless carriages.

He was taking part in the London to Brighton Veteran Car rally, and is thought to have gone off the route and crashed on the M23.

The unnamed man died at around 10am when he was thrown towards the windscreen of a lorry that was involved in roadworks on the motorway.

His next of kin has been informed.

An elderly female passenger, believed to be his wife, has been flown to hospital suffering from serious head injuries.

A London to Brighton Veteran Car Run spokeswoman told the Daily Mail: “We can confirm that the car involved in this morning's tragic incident on the M23 had been entered in the London to Brighton Veteran Car Run.

“The car had left the route, which does not include the M23 where the collision took place.

“We are doing all we can to support the family concerned and are working with the police, but we cannot comment any further at this stage.”

A spokesman for Surrey Police added: “We can confirm that a man has sadly died following a collision on the southbound carriageway of the M23 near J7 Hooley.

“The collision, involving a car (1903 Knox Runabout Old Porcupine) and an HGV, took place around 10:00am.”

Two years ago a, 68-year-old man died on the same Veteran Car Run that was first staged in 1927.

The 1903 Knox Runabout Old Porcupine was initially released with a top speed of 35mph with a 8hp two-cylinder engine.

Designed by Harry A Knox, a pioneer of horseless carriages, the car would originally sell for $2,000 (£1,500).

In 2012 one of the surviving models was sold through Bonham’s for $69,000 (£53,000).

The London to Brighton rally is one of the most popular on the vintage car circuit and event organisers state that competitor’s car must be in “excellent condition” to take part in the 60-mile journey.

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