Series leader Richard Cooper boosted his points tally at the top of the Pirelli National Superstock 1000 standings as he held off a charging Taylor Mackenzie for the win this morning.
The former Superbike star powered his Buildbase Suzuki ahead with just a corner to spare after Bathams BMW’s Mackenzie took the fight down to the very last bend.
Mackenzie got the strongest start from the middle of the front row, but Cooper slipped ahead on the drying line into Island Bend and led the way as Lee Jackson and Andy Reid tucked in behind.
But on lap three, Jackson found a way past Mackenzie at Cascades as Cooper edged ahead, gapping the pursuing duo by almost 1.5s after just four laps.
Mackenzie hadn’t given up, however, and passed Jackson before setting about a hunt for the win as he chopped half a second off Cooper’s lead.
By the end of lap six, Cooper had the 2016 champ right on his tail and plotting his move for a few laps, Mackenzie pounced at Old Hall and took the lead.
Meanwhile in the battle for third some two seconds further back, Olsen had bridged a four-second gap to snatch the final rostrum spot from Jackson.
Rain flags flew on lap 11 as wet weather set in at all sectors, but Cooper held steady and slotted up the inside of Mackenzie at Hislop’s.
And while Mackenzie made a last-ditch effort with a pass at Lodge, Cooper cut back and beat him across the line by 0.148s to extend his championship lead while Olsen bagged third.