The number 52 takes his first win of the season ahead of a three-way fight to complete the podium after drama for Casey O'Gorman and Carter Brown in Scotland
Evan Belford (City Lifting/RS Racing) started his Sunday in style at Knockhill as the number 52 bolted off at the front and only continued to pull away, crossing the line over eight seconds clear of teammate Johnny Garness for his first win of the year. Garness took his first podium of the season in second, just getting ahead of a fight for third that saw Harrison Crosby (Banks Racing) pip Cormac Buchanan (Microlise Cresswell Racing) by hundredths.
There was key Cup drama ahead of lights out for two competitors, too. Casey O’Gorman (Microlise Cresswell Racing), the points leader going in after doing the double at Oulton Park, crashed in FP2 and was sidelined for the rest of the weekend. Then, on a Warm Up lap ahead of Race 1, Carter Brown (City Lifting/RS Racing) found himself on the end of bad luck as a technical issue forced him to bail off his machine and out of the race, also leaving him well down the grid for Race 2.
As the lights went out though, Belford got a great start from pole to get the hammer down early and the number 52 was able to pull out some breathing space even by the end of Lap 1. From there, his advantage only increased as he pulled the pin and, by the time he met the chequered flag, the City Lifting/RS Racing rider was over eight seconds clear for his first victory of 2021.
The fight for the other places on the podium went down to the wire, however, with Scotsman Troy Jeffrey (Stiggymotorsport) getting the jump into second place off the line and duelling with Lucas Brown (Amphibian Scaffolding / SP125 Racing) early on. It didn't take long for Garness to move up into second, however, before Lucas Brown then crashed out from fourth as James Cook (Wilson Racing) tried to get in on the action. The Wilson Racing rider then ran wide and dropped down to seventh, however, taking himself out the podium fight.
That left Garness in second, with Crosby picking his way past Jeffrey into third. Cormac Buchanan (Microlise Cresswell Racing) then swept past both to take over in P3, and the New Zealander was there to stay in the podium fight.
As the last few laps dawned and Garness started to get reeled in, lapped riders in the latter stages left that Garness-Crosby-Buchanan train split by similar gaps, and it was all going down to the final corner.
Garness was ahead and stayed ahead, the number 57's speed in a straight line guaranteeing him a first podium of the season. Behind, Crosby attacked Buchanan into the hairpin and got ahead, with the two then tucking in for the uphill drag to the line. Over that line, it was mere hundredths but Crosby took it for his first rostrum of 2021.
That left Buchanan in fourth, with Cook taking fifth at the flag as he was able to get the better of the fast-starting Troy Jeffrey. Bailey Stuart-Campbell (Team 151s) took seventh, just a tenth ahead of Ollie Walker (Moto Rapido / SP125 Racing). A little further down the road, Dutchman Kiyano Veijer (Microlise Cresswell Racing) held off Jamie Lyons (C&M Motors Ltd/Tooltec Racing) to take ninth as the duo completed the top ten.
There were a number of crashers, including Ryan Hitchcock (Wilson Racing) and Sullivan Mounsey (iForce Lloyd & Jones).