Owner of Nissan that ploughed into crowd at Stevenage car meet named

This is the first picture of a 22-year-old whose car ploughed into a crowd at speed, sending pedestrians flying as at least 17 were injured at a charity car meet.

Julian Castano recently posted photos of his blue Nissan 350Z on Facebook , calling it "the smiling maker".

Police have not said who was driving the car when it crashed on Thursday night.

A witness claims the Nissan was travelling at speed just moments before it collided with a black Toyota GT86 and both cars smashed into spectators lining both sides of the road in Stevenage, Hertfordshire.

The Nissan careered to the right – ploughing into pedestrians on the central reservation – as the Toyota veered left and hit people standing on a pavement and grassy bank in the alleged 'boy racer' crash.

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Family members who answered the door at Mr Castano's home in Ingatestone, Essex, did not comment.

Distressing video shows the Toyota pulling out in front of the Nissan and the cars scraping against each other before they veer into the crowd along the A602.

Bystanders are sent flying as witnesses scream in horror and rush to the aid of victims as they lay bloodied on the ground.

A witness said a group desperately tried to lift one of the cars off a boy or young man whose arm was trapped under one of the cars.

Local residents had complained about the weekly car meets run by the modified car club Cruise Herts, fearing there would be a serious crash.

Hundreds of people were attending the Thursday Night Takeover event which was raising money for bereaved couples who have lost a baby or child.

Ciaran O'Connor, 33, who witnessed the crash while driving home from an open mic night, said he saw three or four youngsters lying motionless in the road in the chaotic and harrowing aftermath.

Describing the scene as "carnage", Mr O'Connor told Mirror Online: "You could just see kids on the floor not moving. I saw at least 10 people injured. One boy had quite a bad arm injury.

"Another boy had his arm cut open and his mum was really upset. She came 15 minutes after the incident and grabbed him and hugged him.

"The first car hit three or four people. I think the slow car went into eight to nine people but it was going slow.

"There were about 200 people there. The majority of them were 15, 16 or 17."

Mr O'Connor, a singer from Stevenage, said he saw a car travelling at speed hit a group of youngsters.

He added: "They went flying. A car pulled out of a retail park and this other car… basically dodged it and took these kids out."

He said the arm of a boy or young man was trapped under one of the cars, and witnesses were desperately trying to lift the vehicle off of him.

Cruise Herts organiser Rix Sidhu, 29, said: "We saw the car (Toyota) come into the car park and recklessly do a donut manoeuvre.

"It pulled out of the car park on to the main road and then it was hit by the Nissan, which was coming at speed.

"I'd say at least 60 or 70mph.

"I was walking down the main road to meet up with some friends and then I saw it happen.

"The cars collided and then went into the crowd at speed.

"There were several younger people in the crowd, but they weren't kids.

"They were about 18 years old-plus.

"It was horrific, the crash.

"We are first-aid trained, just in case, and members of the public were really good too, helping us get to those who were injured.

"There was one woman who couldn't walk, we had to get four of us to carry her to safety.

"I'm thankful that nobody died.

"Nobody wanted this, we try so hard to make sure this doesn't happen, we beg people not to race on the roads, if they want to race, there are places they can go for that, tracks where they can go at speed."

He said the club will stop holding meets, which are meant to be static in a retail park's car park, after 17 years.

Mr Sidhu said "unfortunately some people went a bit rogue" and left the car park, where crowds lined the main road to capture footage of the vehicles at speed, he added.

Organisers said they had warned drivers not to race or drive recklessly.

Another witness said: "My thoughts and prayers are with all those poor kids who were struck by a car tonight in Stevenage at the car meet.

"Literally never seen a scene like it. Kids lying in the road everywhere missed it by about 10 seconds as was just turning round the roundabout."

Hertfordshire police are investigating the crash.

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