Richard Cooper takes runners-up finish on road race debut


Hucknall rider Richard Cooper praised his support team after a successful road racing debut saw him finish second at the International North West 200 on his superstock GSX-R1000R — and take the title of fastest ever newcomer at the event.

The Buildbase Suzuki rider, who currently leads the National Superstock 1000 Championship, qualified eighth fastest in both the superstock and superbike classes.

In Thursday’s superstock race he got away with the leading group, kept his head and rode at a comfortable pace for sixth, coming away with the title of fastest newcomer with a lap speed of 120.659mph on his GSX-R1000R.

With the weather changing for Saturday’s action and leading to changeable track conditions, Cooper raced his GSX-R1000R superbike, shod with wet tyres, to another impressive sixth-place finish.

Tyre choice was the big decision for the event’s second superstock race, with a mostly dry track littered with damp and wet patches.

Electing for a wet front and intermediate rear, Cooper made his way through the pack on the opening lap to move into second place.

Swapping positions with his rivals — and also closing in on the race leader in the latter stages — Cooper grabbed second on the run into Juniper Hill for the final time to finish runner-up by just three seconds.

“The team was perfect,” he said. “I’ve got a team around me that I trust completely and has loads of experience.”