Stroud’s Dan Cooper scored his and the Cornish-based Centurion Racing team’s best ever TT performance today when he finished in a brilliant 11th place in this afternoon’s four lap Monster Energy Supersport TT.
Riding the Triumph Daytona 675, Dan also lapped quicker than ever before in the Supersport category and he backed this up with a solid 24th place in the evening’s Royal London 360 Superstock race to make it three bronze replicas from three starts.
The afternoon’s Monster Energy Supersport race got underway later than scheduled at 1pm and it saw Dan start from 21st place, the quickest of the non-seeded riders, and his strong practice form was proven once more when an opening lap of 120.002mph, his first 120mph+ lap on a Supersport machine, placed him in 16th place.
Although he lapped slightly slower on the second lap, he moved up to 15th and with a few retirements from the front runners, he was up to 13th on lap three. A brilliant last lap of 120.634mph helped Dan move up to superb 11th place for his best ever TT finish and just 18 seconds off a dream top ten finish.
At 6.30pm it was the four lap Royal London 360 Superstock race where Dan was back out on the Honda Fireblade. Despite the long gap between the races, Dan completed the first lap in 23rd place after an opening lap of 121.793mph. With the evening sun getting lower in the sky, conditions were quite difficult and although he dropped back slightly, a final lap of 122.623mph enabled Dan to move up to 24th at the end of the four laps for yet another bronze replica.
Dan Cooper: “I really enjoyed the Supersport race and although we still have a few handling issues with the bike, I lapped quicker than ever before and was delighted with 11th place. Being so close to a top ten finish is superb although I was slightly disappointed to have missed out on my first silver replica. There’s still room for improvement with the bike so, hopefully, with a few more tweaks we can improve it and go even better. The delay between the two races didn’t help me and I struggled to get into the Superstock race whilst the sun being so low in the sky was a real issue for me. I rode OK but I wasn’t feeling totally confident through the lower section of the course where the sun was at its worst so I took it steady there and rode as fast and as safe as I could. It was another good finish in the end though so I’m happy with how the day’s racing has gone.”
Paul Rees: “We’re mega chuffed with 11th and after all the hard work the boys put in during practice week, I’m delighted for everyone that we’ve achieved such a great result. Positions were fluctuating throughout the race and although there were a few DNFs during the race, Dan was never lower than 16th and a near top ten finish is brilliant. This time last year, Dan was feeling the effects of the race distances a bit but his fitness work has paid off and he still felt good at the end of the race. Dan was a bit disappointed with the Superstock race but he rode very sensibly and there’s no point pushing when you’re not feeling 100% confident. We’re all very happy with his performance and with three top 25 finishes, three bronze replicas and a best ever finish so far this week, everything’s going very well indeed.”
Dan’s next race comes on Wednesday with the second four-lap Monster Energy Supersport TT race.
As in 2011, Centurion Racing will continue to show their support for Help for Heroes, their chosen charity, by displaying H4H logos on the bikes and team attire. Team Principal Paul Rees, who spent 20 years in Her Majesty’s Royal Marine Commandos, was given permission to have the bikes carry the H4H logos in order to encourage the public to be more aware of this charity that supports our Armed Forces, many of whom are making daily sacrifices in Afghanistan and Iraq.
Centurion Racing would specially like to thank Arai, FTR, GPR Racewear, Dunlop, Rage Designs, RichArt, R2 Logo Print & Embroidery, Akrapovic, Daytona, and all our friends and followers.
For more information visit the website: www.centurionracing.com (Also on Facebook)
Remaining 2012 TT Schedule
Wednesday 6th June
10.45 – SES TT Zero Challenge – 1 lap
13.00 – Monster Energy Supersport TT Race 2 – 4 laps
15.15 – Sure Sidecar TT Race 2 – 3 laps
Friday 8th June
10.45 – BikerPetition.co.uk Lightweight TT Race – 3 laps
13:30 – PokerStars Senior TT Race – 6 laps
Picture attached (courtesy of Mark Walters)
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