A driver who fled from a Whangarei alcohol breath-testing checkpoint then tried to outrun cops discovered it's not such a good idea.

The police Traffic Alcohol group set up a checkpoint on Kamo Rd on Thursday night. Police said a vehicle initially stopped just after 11pm but then took off.

The driver turned on to Punarere Dr then into William Jones Dr where he ditched the vehicle and allegedly made a run for it.

The burst for freedom was short-lived as a fast male officer, a new recruit, managed to run him down and make an arrest behind the Otangarei shops.

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A 28-year-old Otangarei man will appear in Whangarei District Court on Tuesday. Charges include failing to stop, dangerous driving and refusing to give police identification.