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Cooper makes history at Mallory
21 July 2009
Richard Cooper and Co-ordit Yamaha insist they will continue to concentrate on the National Superstock Championship this season, despite rider Richard Cooper making British Superbike history on his stunning one-off outing at Mallory Park.
With no Superstock round taking place at the Leicestershire circuit, Co-ordit made the decision to give Cooper an opportunity aboard Superbike machinery, albeit on a two-year old Yamaha.
Initially targeting a podium finish in the Mirror.co.uk Cup class, Cooper instead stunned his more experienced rivals by proving a consistent front runner throughout free practice, a position he consolidated in qualifying by placing his bike on the front row.
While his hopes in race one were ended by a fall on the opening lap, Cooper struck back in the sodden second outing to not only muscle his way past the likes of Leon Camier and Tommy Hill, but to also overtake Chris Walker and assume the lead of the race.
Staying out front for more than three laps, although Camier eventually got the better of him, Cooper will still go down in history as being the first Superbike Cup competitor to lead a race overall.
While he would eventually slip back to fifth position by the time the race was stopped early, Cooper's efforts provided one of the weekend's big talking points.
“What a fantastic weekend! We came here with the intention of challenging for a Cup podium. To be able to get away and run with these guys was amazing, and then to lead the race for a few laps was unreal but fantastic for the team.
“It's been an amazing weekend for me, a huge thanks to Pete, the team and all of our sponsors. This result shows just how competitive the Superstock championship actually is!”
Despite his immediate success on a Superbike, team owner Pete Bradshaw remains committed to the Superstock Championship, where Cooper currently lies third in the standings.
“What a truly magical weekend for the team! For a small team like our that has risen from club level and put a bike on the front row of the highest level of British racing is nothing short of amazing. We made history today by being the first Cup team to lead a championship race, and it's just reward for all the hard work and effort everyone in the team does.
“Richard has been awesome today and has shown everyone the talent I know he has. Let's take this confidence on to the next Superstock round at Brands. With publicity and results like this we would welcome anyone who would like to join the team by sponsoring on a round by round basis.”
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