NW200: James Cowton delivers coveted victory for McAdoo Racing team

James Cowton celebrates his Supertwin victory with Winston (left) and Jason McAdoo.
James Cowton celebrates his Supertwin victory with Winston (left) and Jason McAdoo.

The Cookstown-based McAdoo Racing team had plenty of cause for celebration on Saturday after James Cowton won his maiden race at the North West 200.

The Yorkshire rider seized his chance in another nip and tuck Supertwins race to snatch victory at the Juniper Hill chicane on the final lap.

Jeremy McWilliams leads James Cowton and Joey Thompson in the Supertwin race.

Jeremy McWilliams leads James Cowton and Joey Thompson in the Supertwin race.

Young prospect Joey Thompson had been leading on the Italian Paton machine, but the 20-year-old left a gap on his inside with a coveted win almost within his grasp.

Cowton dived through on the brakes, while veteran racer Jeremy McWilliams also passed Yorkshireman Thompson to gain a place on the KMR Kawasaki.

At the line, Cowton won by 0.6 seconds to the delight of the McAdoo team.

“It was all down to that last chicane,” he said.

“It was difficult with the wind out there and you have to pick your lines and make it work for you.”

McWilliams, who also finished on the podium in Thursday’s race, felt he had the race in the bag.

He ran wide at Metropole but was still right in contention until the very end.

“Winning would have been the icing on the cake but two podiums will do,” said the 54-year-old.

“It was fun but I was disappointed because I thought I had it, I thought I had the pace, but we haven’t had much time on this bike.”

Tobermore’s Adam McLean, who started from the front row in second place on the Hanna Kawasaki, was in the leading group at the beginning of the race when he was forced out.

Yeovil rider Martin Jessopp, who won Thursday’s race, also dropped out on his Kawasaki.

Christian Elkin finished fourth, 17 seconds behind race winner Cowton, while Michael Sweeney from Skerries and Victor Lopez rounded out the top six.