With their eye-catching marketing, attractive rugby and the fact they’re based in a beautiful and sizeable city, the growth of York can only be good for rugby league.
The man tasked with getting them as far on the pitch as they can is coach James Ford, now full-time with the City Knights, as they prepare to move to a new stadium.
While Super League may not be on the agenda next year, save for a major upset, continuing their upward progress will be priority.
Ford said: “We got the reward last year and achieved our target. Now we need to focus on this year and make sure our attitude and hard work remains, and the boys’ attitude to their development and the team is promising.
“The budget is fine, most are similar unless you’re Toronto, and I think we’ve put a good squad together.
“We’ve used our funds wisely, we’ve got some hungry players, some good players who have their best years in front of them, and we will see them improve through the year and York continue improving through the year.
“I’m pleased the club’s backed me to put the squad together, and obviously you’d like to strengthen it through the season but those kind of deals need to make sense for the club not just in the short term but the long term.
“We are underdogs in terms of two years ago, we were a club that nearly wasn’t a club, but we’re going in the right direction.
“We’re under no illusions as to the challenge and we know how immense it’ll be, and if you’re not willing to cause upsets and you haven’t something to fight for, then what’s the point of being in the game.
“I love this club, I really enjoy working for this club and I’m desperate to do well for them.”
York 19-man squad v Toronto: Marsh, Robson, Salter, Hey, Cockayne, Robinson, Dixon, Jubb, Teanby, Jordan-Roberts, Horne, Blagborough, Porter, Whiteley, Mazive, Stock, Bass, Petersen, Brining.