The 70th Steve Henshaw Gold Cup at Oliver’s Mount in Scarborough takes center stage this weekend, where road racing man of the moment Davey Todd leads the way.
England’s only road race returns to action on the wooded 2.41-mile course after a number of events were canceled last year due to deteriorated infrastructure, with several buildings on the site deemed unsafe and slated for demolition by Scarborough Council.
Oliver’s Mount is Saltburn runner Todd’s home race meeting and the 27-year-old enters this weekend as heavy favorite after a stellar season.
Riding for Clive Padgett’s famed Honda team, Todd lived up to his potential this year, adding a maiden Isle of Man TT podium in the Superstock race to his four second-place finishes at the North West 200.
He also bagged a fivefold at the Southern 100 and took four wins and a new all-time lap record at the Armoy Road Races in late July.
“I feel really in tune with the bikes and it sounds crazy, but it’s one of those good times when things get easy,” said Todd, who took the Supersport pole yesterday. “I have fun every time I get on the bikes and I have a lot of fun.
“I don’t force or try to do lap times, it’s just this good harmony where everything works really well.”
His rivals include Northern Ireland’s Adam McLean – second fastest in 600cc qualifying – who will ride his own Yamaha Supersport machine and a Kawasaki KMR for Ryan Farquhar in the Supertwin class, as well as exciting hopeful James Hind.
Joey Thompson is also a contender at his home event, while Rob Hodson is among the Supertwin racing stars on the Dafabet Kawasaki and Classic Superbike events.
Republic of Ireland’s Michael Sweeney makes a rare appearance at Oliver’s Mount while fellow Southern Irishman Derek Sheils will ride for Team Greenall Kawasaki in the Classic Superbike races.
Previous Gold Cup winners Lee Johnston and Dean Harrison miss out as the event collides with the Goodwood Revival.
The races take place today and tomorrow, when the Gold Cup feature takes place in the afternoon.
Also this weekend, the 15th round of the MotoGP World Championship takes place at Motorland Aragon in Spain, where Marc Marquez returns from injury.
Meanwhile, an alternative date for the postponed two-day IFS David Wood Memorial short circuit meeting following the Queen’s death is under consideration.