A police officer involved in a fatal high-speed chase said he did not consider 130mph an excessive speed for police to drive on the North Circular Road, an inquest heard yesterday.

Lexy Williams, 24, of High Road, died on January 22, 2007, shortly after he crashed into the central reservation of the A406. Police had tried to pull him over in Fore Street, Edmonton, but he refused to stop.

PC Darren Baxter then chased Mr Williams to the junction of the A406 and Golders Green Road, where the accident took place.

PC Iain Jones was also alerted to the chase, but only caught up with his colleague and Mr Williams after the accident.

Records show PC Baxter’s car was travelling up to 124mph and PC Jones’ car reached 110mph during the five-minute chase, but both officers denied putting other drivers at risk.

PC Jones said: “I would not say I was presenting a risk. It was all done under controlled circumstances.

“I could go faster than 120mph and I would not deem that to be an excessive speed for that road. I would be more than happy to travel at 130mph on parts of that road.

“Speed is a factor when deciding whether to stop a chase, but there are lots of other factors to consider too, such as how recklessly the rider was riding the bike, how confident he appeared, the state of the machine, whether it appeared in good working order, and whether he was wearing a helmet and protective clothing.”

The officer said the nature of the suspected offence, whether minor or significant, would rarely be a factor in deciding whether to pursue a chase because that information “would be very difficult to know”.

“If someone fails to stop there is obviously a reason why they have done that,” he added. “We would suspect there are other offences we don’t know about.”

PC Julie Spring, the radio operator who accompanied PC Baxter, broke down in tears as she was questioned about the chase. She said they decided to pursue Mr Williams because he failed to stop when requested.

They wanted Mr Williams to stop because he was travelling above the speed limit, and because they suspected the bike was stolen due to its licence plate appearing to have no garage markings and no screws, and seeming overly clean.

When asked by Heather Williams QC whether she had “reasonable grounds” to suspect the motorcyclist of an offence or whether her suspicions were more general in nature, she said: “I was at the stage when I wanted to stop the motorcyclist to investigate further. It was a general suspicion.”

She did not tell the police control room what speed the police car was travelling because it was up to the operator to ask for that information if they deemed it significant, she said.

When asked if she thought driving at such high speeds presented a risk to other road-users, she said: “Police are trained to very high standards and PC Baxter had an extra set of eyes: my own.”

Dr David Gaunt, the doctor called by London Ambulance Service to provide emergency aid to the victim around 15 minutes after the accident, at 8.26pm, also gave evidence yesterday.

He said it was “more likely than not” that Mr Williams would have survived had he arrived minutes earlier, before the victim lost consciousness.

But the police officers’ decision just to call an ambulance and not to contact him directly “was entirely appropriate”, he added.

The inquest will conclude at the end of next week.