Nnth place for Hucknall ace at Snetterton

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Norfolk’s Snetterton 300 circuit provided a weekend of challenges for the Anvil Hire TAG Racing team, with Hucknall’s sole superbike rider Richard Cooper posting a ninth place finish.

After struggling with set-up in practice, Cooper qualified the Anvil Hire TAG Racing Kawasaki ZX-10R superbike a lower than usual 18th on the grid.

The 31-year-old made a good start to end the first lap in 11th place.

Despite suffering from a lack of ultimate pace, Cooper was able to run just outside the top 10 for the duration of the 16-lap race, narrowly missing out on 11th to fellow Kawasaki rider Barry Burrell.

With his best lap from the opening race elevating him to 15th on the grid for the afternoon’s second outing, Cooper again made a good start to occupy 10th in the opening laps.

Cooper once again spent the race with Burrell in tow, along with Isle of Man TT legend Ian Hutchinson and former Australian champion Josh Waters in what would ultimately be the battle for ninth due to some retirements among the frontrunners.

The Anvil Hire TAG Racing rider led the gang of four out of the final corner and across the line to bring home seven championship points. Cooper remains 11th in the championship in TAG Racing’s debut year in the blue riband class.

The next outing for the team is at Scotland’s Knockhill circuit, in a fortnight’s time.

Cooper said: “Having had such a great weekend at Oulton, we came to Snetterton on a high.

“Unfortunately we knew we were up against it from the first practice session and although the team worked really hard and never gave up trying to improve the bike, we never quite found that last bit we needed.

“Qualifying was a real disappointment but we got away well, especially in race two, but we’re up against great riders and at a track like Snetterton, with its long straights, you need everything to be just right.

“We had some luck, but ninth was a decent result in the end – it’s just that I believe that both me and the team are capable of being in the top six.

“Overall though, there are plenty of positives. We didn’t crash and the team threw everything at it this weekend.

“If we can find that last little bit then we should be back up there at Knockhill.”