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'I've lost the light of my life'

PUBLISHED: 16:08 02 April 2008 | UPDATED: 11:37 12 August 2010

DISTRAUGHT: The family of Christopher Allarton at the scene of the plan crash.

DISTRAUGHT: The family of Christopher Allarton at the scene of the plan crash.

Christopher Allarton, the youngest of Sunday s tragic victims, joined Apex as a talented engineer only a week earlier and was looking forward to an exciting career in motor racing.

Christopher Allarton, the youngest of Sunday's tragic victims, joined Apex as a talented engineer only a week earlier and was looking forward to an exciting career in motor racing.

His devastated father told reporters: "I have lost the light of my life.

"Chris was just starting out in life. He met a beautiful girl, finished university and got himself a great job. He was really excited about starting at Apex."

A spokesman for Apex Motorsport said: "Although Chris had only been with us for a very short while, he had immediately and enthusiastically fitted in as a key member of the team.

"His role was a very important role in the development of the cars and that is why he was on his way to the track in France to take part in testing.

"His colleagues are shocked and saddened about what has happened, he was a delightful young man who was obviously extremely talented and would undoubtedly have proved a major asset to the team.

"Our thoughts are very much with his family and friends at this tragic time."

The three passenger victims were heading to a test session in France crucial to the team's success in the opening rounds of the GT3 championship at Silverstone on April 20.

All the Apex team had worked flat out to make their Jaguar car a front row contender and after initial testing in February Mr Lloyd said, now poignantly: "The times we saw yesterday put us plum in the zone to compete at the front in GT3 this season but, of course, we won't know for certain until we reach the first race.

"But it is very encouraging, and a perfect birthday present for me."

Test driver Leslie, who had been at the wheel, confirmed the team had made a huge leap forward.

Team partner Harry Handkammer said after the tragedy: "This is as sad as you can get, I'm simply devastated."

Father-of-three Richard Lloyd had successfully guided a Bentley team to victory in the 2003 Le Mans 24-hour race.

Leslie raced British Touring Cars from 1990 to 2003 and was a frequent commentator on Eurosport.

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