The number 55 rider from Newcastle started from third on the grid but scrapped with pole sitter Freddy Pett and Phil Atkinson of the line to take the lead. Josh Wood came off at Shell on the first lap and the safety car came out, enabling Atkinson in second to stay close behind Rouse.
When the safety car came in at the end of lap two Atkinson attempted to pass his younger competitor but struggled to find a way though.
Pett went back to fifth, also being overtaken by Dan Helyer and Charlie King. King proceeded to chase down Helyer and on lap four managed to pass him. Helyer pushed on and retook the position but not for long as the number 76 rider passed him again.
Pett attempted to pass the riders but couldn’t find a way through. It was on lap five that he found a gap and moved up to fourth.
On lap six Pett put in a fastest lap and passed King. He began chasing down Atkinson and on lap nine Atkinson overshot a corner losing two places and letting Pett move up to second. Pett went on to set a lap record of 1:42.941 on lap eight.
It seemed that Pett might catch Rouse but King shocked everyone as he snuck passed both of the front runners, topping Pett’s lap record by going 1:42.906 in the process. Rouse wasn’t about to give up the lead though and pushed on to pass King again on the final lap and took the win.
Rouse commented: “It was a great race, I didn’t feel like that pace was particularly hot but I felt great leading. When Charlie came past I was expecting it to be Phil or Freddy but even though he was riding really well he was breaking hard in the corners and sacrificing his exit speed so I managed to pass him.”
Pett was disappointed with his race: “I was surprised with the lap times because it felt like a really scruffy race. My foot injury wasn’t actually bothering me that much, it was the fact I was feeling really ill when I went out, I hadn’t been able to eat anything this morning and I was white as a sheet when I got to the grid! I’m just looking forward to Race 2 now.”
Triumph Triple Challenge are back out on track at 17.05 today at Oulton Park. For more updates follow @TriumphTC on twitter or find Triumph Triple Challenge on Facebook.