Entertainment

Sara Cox favourite to replace Simon Mayo in BBC Radio 2 drivetime slot

The favourites include experienced BBC Radio 2 presenters.

Sara Cox is the favourite to become the new presenter of rebranded BBC Radio 2 Drive following the departure of Simon Mayo.

The DJ has presented the show since 2010, but Mayo will vacate the 5-7pm slot to focus on writing commitments.

Cox was heavily tipped to take over from Chris Evans as presenter of the Breakfast Show, but lost out to Zoe Ball.

She is now the 6/4 favourite to fill the drivetime slot, with Claudia Winkleman, Graham Norton and Richard Madeley touted as possible presenters of a potentially rebranded show.

These are the odds on other contenders, according to bookmaker Paddy Power:

Mark Goodier – 6/1

Sir Terry Wogan death
Mark Goodier is the second favourite (Anthony Devlin/PA)

A radio veteran and experienced BBC man, Mark Goodier is a frequent stand-in for permanent presenters on BBC Radio 2.

He has also worked on Class FM, Smooth Radio, and BBC Radio 1. He has experience in the drivetime slot, making him a potentially safe choice for producers.

Steve Wright – 8/1

Sony Radio Academy Awards – Grosvenor House Hotel
Steve Wright (Jane Mingay/PA)

Another BBC stalwart, the award-winning Wright currently presents his own show on BBC Radio 2: Steve Wright In The Afternoon.

Moving Wright from this slot to slightly later in the day would be a safe choice for producers, and the presenter is the third favourite.

Liza Tarbuck – 10/1

Tric Awards Liza Tarbuck
Liza Tarbuck receives her Satellite/Digital TV Personality of the Year award at the Television and Radio Industries Club (Tric) Awards in London. (Stefan Rousseau/PA)

Tarbuck has been a frequent stand-in for BBC radio talent, including for Mayo.  She currently present her own weekend show on BBC Radio 2, and could be reassigned.

Claudia Winkleman – 12/1

Virgin TV British Academy Television Awards 2018 – London
Claudia Winkleman attending the Virgin TV British Academy Television Awards 2018 at London’s Royal Festival Hall (Ian West/PA)

The Strictly Come Dancing presenter has done plenty of radio work, with her own Sunday night show.

Another Radio 2 talent, she could be reassigned to a more regular weekday slot.

Richard Madeley – 16/1

Royal Television Society Programme Awards 2016 – London
Richard Madeley attending the 2016 Royal Television Society Programme Awards (Dominic Lipinski/PA)

Madeley is another one of the bookmakers’ favourites to have experience of Radio 2, having stood in for and partly succeeded Sir Terry Wogan on the station.

Nick Grimshaw – 16/1

Nick Grimshaw last BBC Radio 1 Breakfast Show
Nick Grimshaw presenting his final Radio 1 Breakfast show (Mark Allan/PA)

Grimshaw vacated his long-running breakfast show on Radio 1 to take up drivetime slot.

The BBC could potentially change his station and maintain the presenter’s role as a drivetime host.

Graham Norton – 33/1

Graham Norton interview
Graham Norton (Ian West/PA)

Talk show star Norton is another experienced Radio 2 talent, presenting his own Saturday morning programme.

However, TV commitments might make it less likely that he will be able to take on regular weekday shows.

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