A DANGEROUS driver who was clocked at 130mph on the A82 between Balloch and Dumbarton after a terrifying high-speed dash past Loch Lomond has been spared prison.

Brendan Black was spotted by police witnesses on the A82 at Sloy power station, north of Tarbet, earlier this year.

The 22-year-old was seen later that day weaving in and out of traffic in a dangerous manner, driving on the wrong side of the road towards oncoming traffic, between Arden and Balloch and on the southbound approach to the Stoneymollan roundabout.

And a short time later traffic police clocked him travelling at upwards of 130mph on the dual carriageway stretch between Stoneymollan and Lomondgate.

Black, a first offender, appeared for sentencing at Dumbarton Sheriff Court on October 1, having pleaded guilty at an earlier hearing to two charges of driving dangerously and at excessive speed, forcing other motorists to take evasive action to avoid a collision.

He was clocked going at more than 100mph on the A85 between Lochearnhead and Lix Toll, and on the A82 near Crianlarich, on Monday, April 15.

The court was told last month how Black had tried to squeeze his blue Mercedes between two lines of stationary vehicles on the approach to the Lomondgate roundabout in a bid to escape from chasing police - damaging his own car, and four other vehicles, in the process.

After exiting the roundabout into a housing estate, Black struck a road sign and tried to make his escape on foot by jumping over the perimeter wall of a nearby house – only to find himself in the back garden of an off-duty police officer, who detained him until colleagues arrived.

He had appeared at a hearing on September 13 without a solicitor, but was encouraged by Sheriff William Gallacher to seek legal representation before being sentenced.

At Tuesday’s hearing, solicitor Nicholas Scullion said Black was “under no illusions” about the seriousness of his offending.

Mr Scullion told the court: “He fully accepts that the manner of his driving put himself and other road users at grave risk.”

Mr Scullion said that only a few days before the incident, one of Black’s friends had taken his own life, adding: “That affected him much more than he realised.

“He made the very stupid decision to take another friend’s car and get away from it all.”

Sheriff Gallacher told Black: “Were you appearing before me with any criminal history, I would have no option but to send you to custody for the maximum period I could.

“However, there are other options available.”

Black, of Woodvale Avenue in Airdrie, was instead handed a community payback order which will see him supervised by social workers for two years.

In addition, he was ordered to carry out 300 hours of unpaid work, and was also banned from driving for two years on the first dangerous driving charge, and three years on the second, and will have to sit an extended test.