Richard Cooper joins Suzuki BSB ranks for Assen

Richard Cooper rejoins the Buildbase Suzuki BSB ranks at Assen on a third Suzuki GSX-R1000 alongside Bradley Ray and Luke Stapleford

Richard Cooper - Buildbase Suzuki

Newly-crowned National Superstock 1000 Champion Richard Cooper will return to the British Superbike Championship at Assen this weekend on a third Buildbase Suzuki, it has been confirmed.

A relative veteran of the BSB paddock with race-winning stints in Superstock, Supersport and Superbike classes, Cooper will return to ‘big bikes’ in the Netherlands this weekend as part of a three-man entry for the factory Suzuki BSB effort.

It comes after the 36-year-old wrapped up the 2019 National Superstock 1000 title with two rounds to spare, Cooper – who competed with the Hawk Racing run team in BSB last year - getting the chance to join Bradley Ray and Luke Stapleford on the Superbike-spec Suzuki GSX-R1000 in the absence of any SSTK action this weekend.

“I’m looking forward to a no-pressure weekend at Assen, and a chance to ride the superbike again and enjoy myself,” he said. “The team had a good weekend at Oulton and have made steps forward with the bike again, so I’m looking forward to seeing where it’s at. 

“But the main thing for me is to enjoy the races. Everyone is well up to speed now in BSB but if we can work well through free practice then hopefully we can have two good races.”

Richard Cooper returns to BSB amidst Suzuki upswing

Cooper comes to back to the Superbike ranks on the back of the team’s strongest weekend of the year at Oulton Park, with Ray scoring two BSB podiums – his and the team’s first of the year – to consolidate the SSTK title win.

Indeed, Cooper – who has utterly dominated SSTK 1000 this year with 11 wins so far - enjoyed one of his best BSB results with Suzuki at Assen last year, while it is easy to forget he did also score a win on the GSX-R1000 at the Brands Hatch finale.

“Richard’s had an amazing season so far and had done a brilliant job to secure his championship with two rounds to spare,” added Hawk team manager Stuart Hicken. “With no Superstock action at Assen, it’s an opportunity for him to enjoy a more relaxed weekend with no pressure and race the superbike for us. 

“It’s also good for us to hear his feedback, as someone with lots of experience that’s also raced the GSX-R in superbike trim, too. Special thanks to Powerslide Motorcycles for their support.”