Football pundit Robbie Savage escapes driving ban after racing down A1 at 99mph

Robbie Savage
Robbie Savage
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TV pundit Robbie Savage escaped a driving ban as he rushed home at 99mph along the A1 in North Yorkshire to see his children, a court heard.

The footballing legend dubbed Mr Marmite was clocked at 99mph in his luxury hand-built Bentley Mulsanne by a traffic cop on a 70mph stretch of the A1 M.

Savage told the officer he was on his way back from an Alan Shearer charity event the night before and was in a hurry to see his sons.

Yesterday the six figure salary BT Sport host was given the maximum six penalty points for speeding. He already has three on his licence for using a mobile.

He was also ordered to pay a £600 fine, £85 court costs and a £60 surcharge by magistrates in Northallerton.

Presiding Magistrate Graham Perrin said: “We have heard this chap was just 3mph over the ACPO guidelines where he would have got a £100 fine and a ticket.

“However, it is only 1mph away from us inviting Mr Savage into court for a possible disqualification.”

Prosecutor Neil Stickland said Savage, 40, of Prestbury, Cheshire, was spotted in the inside lane of the A1 at 9.15am on January 18.

The officer had spotted the performance Bentley was travelling south at “excessively above the limit,” the prosecutor continued.

“He stopped the vehicle and spoke to Savage who said he was rushing to get home to his children after being at Alan Shearer’s charity function the night before,” Mr Stickland added.

Philip Morris, defending, denied Savage was “trying to name drop by the way he responded to the caution,” adding:

“It is true the night before he had been to a charity function. He had been with his wife staying overnight in Newcastle for an event which raised a consireable amount for a work colleague.

“He has two sons aged 11 and eight. Like any parent, he was anxious to return home because they had been left in the care of his father in law.

“Being someone who is in the public eye he has an over reliance on family members when he and his wife stay over night rather than baby sitters.

“He was running slightly late. There had been some frustration due to average speed check cameras further up the A1.

“At the time, he was on a particularly quiet stretch of road.

“He is a name I’m sure is familiar to you. He is someone who as a result of his professional playing career in football has metamorphasised into a pundit.

“He is therefore particularly anxious about his licence. Someone once described him as being like Marmite. You either love him or the opposite.

“When you are in the public eye and have to offer opinion on people’s football teams you are regularly accosted when you are out in public.

“As a consequence, the car provides something of a safe haven when getting from home to work and to charitable functions.”

As well as family commitments, Savage had to travel to football grounds around the country as well as charity functions and televised games.

It would therefore be difficult to rely on public transport, Mr Morris added.

Due to the significant number of miles travelled he was “genuinely anxious” about his licence “which is very important aspect of being able to perform his job”.

He earned “three figure” fees for BBC appearances and held “a lower six figure contract” for hosting his show on BT Sport, Mr Morris added.

Savage, who did not attend court, admitted speeding on the A1 near Junction 47 for Karesborough in his Bentley. 

The court heard he had one previous conviction for a mobile phone offence and already has three points on his licence so now he has nine.

Under magistrates court guidelines, anyone with 12 points faces disqualification for six months under the totting up procedure. Anyone caught doing 100mph in a 70mph zone also faces being summoned to court for a ban.

The night before the offence, fellow pundit Alan Shearer had hosted the charity ball at the Hilton in Gateshead featuring a performance by Gary Barlow.

‎During his playing career Savage played for Manchester United, Crewe Alexandra, Leicester City, Birmingham City, Blackburn Rovers, Derby County, and Brighton and Hove Albion.

He also played for his native Wales 39 times.