JAMES Hillier destroyed the field in today’s Superstock race to claim his very first North West 200 win while newcomer Richard Cooper scorched to second.
The Quattro Plant Wicked Coatings Kawasaki man led from lights-to-flag and controlled the entire scrap, but it was Buildbase Suzuki’s event rookie Richard Cooper who blasted onto the road racing map as he beat Davey Todd to second.
After his flyer of a challenge in the Superbike race, Hillier blasted out of the gates and immediately stretched a few seconds over the chasing pack, with Dean Harrison, Glenn Irwin and Cooper all dicing for second.
While Hillier was well out of view and seemingly in a race of his own in the top spot, Cooper was flirting with the slip stream as he and Harrison diced for second.
But the Hawk Racing man found a way through on the brakes at Metropole and slotted ahead of the Silicone Engineering rider to take over second.
As Hillier crossed the line with a mammoth nine-second advantage to start lap two, Peter Hickman, Michael Dunlop and Ian Hutchinson had all stopped up in the pits.
In the battle for second, Harrison slipped ahead of Cooper on the run to University before the BSB veteran got back in front of the Yorkshireman before Ballysally Roundabout.
But Harrison soon dropped into the clutches of Penz13 BMW’s Todd as the Supersport winner took over third before Harrison dropped behind RK Racing’s Derek Sheils and Irwin, who were in a fight for fourth.
As Hillier sat pretty with over 19sec to spare, Todd and Irwin had made their way past Cooper, but the British championship leader wasn’t letting go easily and he hit back at Irwin to take third again before the pack hit York.
While Irwin dropped off, the battle for second raged on the penultimate lap as Harrison, Cooper and Todd continued to dice and with a lap to go, Todd led Cooper before Cooper beat him on the brakes into University.
*Image: Double Red