North West 200 podium ‘a dream’ for Cooper - Bikesport News

North West 200 podium ‘a dream’ for Cooper

Picture: Impact Images

Buildbase Suzuki’s Richard Cooper bagged a podium in his first-ever North West 200, claiming second place in Saturday’s Superstock race under tricky conditions.

Cooper’s team shod his GSX-R1000 with a wet front and intermediate rear for the race - held on a drying nine-mile track - and the Nottingham rider stayed calm and collected to take second place with a last lap move.

“Coming into this event I knew I was going to take my time, learn, and build-up my speed. We took small steps forward since we started on Tuesday and just got faster and faster every time we went out, whether that was on the Superbike or Superstock machine,” said Cooper.

“In the first two races, even when I got away with the fast group at the front, I held back because it wasn’t time to push, I needed to still go at my pace.

For the second Superstock race it was different; I felt comfortable – I’ve won in those conditions on a Superbike – and felt I could attack and push harder. But to come away with a podium this week is a dream to be honest.

“But the team was perfect. I always said I wouldn’t come and do this event unless everything came together and with the Buildbase Suzuki team I’ve got a team around me that I trust completely and a team that has loads of experience doing this, plus with the GSX-R, a bike that worked really well all week.

“I got on the bike for the last Superstock race and Steve [Hicken – Team Manager] told me we were going with a wet front and intermediate rear, and I just got on it and rode it and look where we ended up.

“I don’t know what gearing or suspension settings we were running or anything. So, I can’t thank them enough for the hard work this week to get us to this point.”

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