Neesom and Cowton shine at Barry Sheene Festival

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The Yorkshire coast’s riders showed exactly how it’s done at their home circuit as they filled the podium places at Oliver’s Mount at the weekend.

Two days worth of racing took place at the circuit for the Barry Sheene Road Race Festival with a mix of classic and modern bikes making up the grids and a few famous faces in the paddock.

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Arguably one of the best riders of all time, Giacomo Agostini led a parade lap around the circuit on his MV Augusta alongside the son of Barry Sheene, Australian Freddie Sheene, and seven time TT winner from the 1970s, Mick Grant.

Driffield’s James Cowton also slowed it down a gear and raced a Manx Norton on behalf of Bob Wood at Goathland Garage in the 250, 350 and 500cc pre-1973 race.

With an average speed of 69mph he took third place on the Sunday, just 0.2 seconds behind the runner up.

He said: “The speed is not ridiculous but you have to alter the riding style.

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“The brakes are non-existent, you come out of a corner and you are already breaking because you won’t stop for the next one.

“They are a lot slower, you have a lot more time to look about - it is a bit more of an enjoyable ride.”

However, he was up to speed again for the modern light-weight and super lightweight round, coming second on his Kawasaki 650 and taking a race win on the Honda 600 in the first modern race.

He added: “We were pleased with the results.

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“We are improving all the time. I have never won on the 600 at that meeting before.

“I have had seconds and thirds so it was nice.”

He is now looking to the Southern 100 meeting at the Isle of Man in a week’s time.

Bempton’s James Neesom didn’t let a time penalty slow him down too much either after taking a 10-second penalty for running on at Farm Bends costing him a third place on the Saturday sessions.

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He explained: “I couldn’t slow it down to go into the corner, instead of risking coming off I thought I will go straight on and I got a penalty.

“I don’t think it was right because I didn’t gain any advantage from running on, in fact I lost out but I can’t do anything about it.”

However, all was not lost. Neesom took two thirds on the Saturday and on Sunday got thirds on the Supertwin and 600.

He also recorded his fastest ever time around the Mount with a 1.51 lap.

He also used the modern senior race to take out the Honda Fireblade 1000cc he will now be riding on behalf of GMEC Motorcycles in a bid to prepare for the Manx GP.

Neesom said: “It is to try and use it as a stepping stone to get further up the ranks.

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“I will see how far it will carry me. There is the TT an d I will see if it is eligable for that.

“It is borderline because of its age but I can do every other meeting on it.”

Scarborough’s Nick Anderson took a seventh and eighth on his GSXR 750 in the Geoff Barry and Barry Sheene classic races respectively and was fourth behind Neesom in the modern lightweight.