Richard Cooper says he is riding high on a wave of self-belief on the Anvil Hire TAG Kawasaki and has strong momentum after his double rostrum last time out at Brands Hatch.

The Nottinghamshire rider ended Friday free practice third on the combined timesheet at Thruxton and just 0.167s off pacesetter Josh Brookes.

Cooper feels the career best results from Brands Hatch two weeks ago have provided consistency to his riding and is targeting more podiums this weekend.

Related Articles

"It is partly down to a confidence thing," Cooper said. "If you do put a lap in for top five, top six, the next lap comes a little bit easier compared to when you are struggling down in P20 and you are on the absolute limit, then you are P21 and P22 and you think what is going on.

"It is the opposite when you are at the top because it seems to come easier, which is nice and as a rider I wish it could happen all the time."

Cooper also threatened to take a march on Brookes in the closing stages of FP2 when he briefly topped the session but was eventually bumped down into third he was still smiling.

"I joked to my dad over breakfast this morning saying I'd like to P1 in a session even though I'd never have thought that a couple of rounds back," he said. "But today we weren't far off today ending FP2 P3 and FP1 P4."

Despite his progress, Cooper says further gains must be made if he is to hold on to a front row spot ahead of qualifying.

"Some of the improvements have got to come from me to slow it down a little bit to go a bit faster because I am rushing in at a few places," he explained. "The chicanes come at you fast here so if you slow the approach down here and there is more time to be gained on the exit rather than the entry. I will do a track walk tonight and set my braking point markers a little bit better."