Todd edged out Mullingar man Derek McGee to clinch second place last summer at the County Antrim meeting on an aging Wilson Craig Honda Fireblade, which he rode only for the first time at the training during the national road race.
The 26-year-old is having a memorable season this year, sealing four second places at the North West 200 in May, a first podium at the Isle of Man TT in the Superstock race and winning a sensational five-fold at the Southern 100, which included a coveted win in the prestigious Solo Championship race against former champion Dean Harrison.
Todd will compete in the Supersport and Superbike classes at Armoy and is one of many top riders to line up in a bid to end the hero Dunlop’s magnificent nine-game unbeaten streak in the Superbike blue ribbon race.
“I can’t wait to be back at Armoy, I’ve always loved going there and had a great one last year with the Wilson Craig boys,” Todd said.
“I’m excited to go with my Padgett team, although it wasn’t in our original plan. We obviously have our BSB schedule which is quite busy, plus major international routes with the North West 200 and TT. I want to race every weekend if I can, and I know that puts a lot of pressure on the team, to get the bikes ready and ready.
“But I pushed them to try to do a few extra runs as much as possible and Armoy was one of them with the Southern 100. Clive finally gave in and said we’d do the Southern, and obviously that worked out. went really well and the boys seemed to be having fun,” he added.
“So after that we said maybe we could fit in at Armoy as well, and luckily Clive agreed, a couple of the guys agreed, and we’re going to do the same thing we did at Southern – we’ll just go over it in a van with a few bikes and a few guys, not the whole crew, and go do Armoy.
Todd made his Armoy debut in 2017, weeks after making his national road racing debut at the Skerries 100. He returned to the event in 2018 with John Burrows’ team but missed the meeting in 2019.
The event was canceled due to the Covid-19 pandemic in 2020, but Todd jumped at the chance to return last year with Darren Gilpin’s Wilson Craig Racing team.
“It’s an exciting time and I think Armoy is really building their reputation and I’ve always loved it since I first went there,” Todd said.
“It’s definitely one of my favorite national road races and it’s because of the atmosphere and the guys who run it – they do a terrific job.
“I think it shows in the commitment we have for this year and hopefully it will have some great races this weekend.
“I’m just looking forward to fighting guys and there are a lot of fast guys who are going to be in the mix,” added the Saltburn man.
“Last year I rode a 2016 Fireblade for the Wilson Craig team and we literally hadn’t tested it or done anything with it. I did a race or two on the 600 for the Wilson We and Craig just pulled the 2016 Fireblade out of someone’s living room and glued some tires on it, put some fuel on it and went racing and finished on the podium in second place behind Michael.
“Given the situation this year I have been training well with the Padgett team on some awesome bikes that I am really comfortable on and love riding, we are in a much stronger position.
“We’ll actually bring the two big bikes, the ‘stocker’ and the Superbike just in case, but we’ll do it on the Superbike. I’m trying to get comfortable on the Superbike and I’ve loved it since I had the first time on it.”
The Armoy Club have attracted by far the best roster for a national road race this year, with entries from Derek Sheils, Derek McGee, Paul Jordan, Adam McLean, newcomer Jamie Coward, Michael Sweeney, Mike Browne, Darryl Tweed , Dominic Herbertson and Phil Crowe.
Frenchman Pierre Yves-Bian is set to make his event debut for the Wilson Craig Honda team alongside Tweed, while Guy Martin and Ian Lougher are entered in the Senior Classic race.
The roads close on Friday for training from 11 a.m. and will reopen no later than 9:30 p.m. The first Lightweight Supersport and Supersport 600 races will take place after qualifying.
On Saturday, the roads will close at 9 a.m. for the main race program and reopen no later than 7:30 p.m.