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Q&A: Nicky Hayden (Indy 500 ride).

Q:
We've got about 10 minutes with Nicky Hayden. First of all, Nicky, on behalf of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, there's been few individuals who have done more to promote our upcoming Red Bull MotoGP event here. We're delighted to have you, the 2006 MotoGP champion here at Indianapolis. You had a brake problem out there?

Nicky Hayden:
Yeah, actually the rear brakes weren't working. They just flew the bike in from Japan. I'm sure it's been setting for a while. The front brake was working fine but the front brakes are carbon. When they're cold, they don't work. So that's OK. Got the heart rate going a little bit, woke me up, but everything else on it was perfect.

Q:
How fast did you make it around the track?

Nicky Hayden:
You know, I'm not exactly sure. I didn't have time to look down. It seemed a little bit crowded. So I don't know, maybe up to probably 178, 180, you know. Fast enough for cold tyres and cold brakes and everything.

Q:
So how fast were will you go in the race?

Nicky Hayden:
In the race we'll be doing 200 here. Seems like just comparing the length of that straightaway, compared to some of the other straightaways, so we're going to come on it quite slow. It's a pretty long straightaway. I don't think it's as long as China, but it's right in there with a few other straightaways.

Q:
You've been doing this pretty much all your life, and you decide to do it and you do it. But what really makes you want to ride in basically at a wall at 200 miles an hour and not knowing if you've got brakes and cold tyres and all that nonsense?

Nicky Hayden:
I certainly have a passion for this sport. It's certainly not just something to do to get paid or something like that. I mean, I, you know, I grew up with the sport. My dad raced, my brothers race, and it's really, I mean, as a kid growing up, I didn't have a plan B or anything else. I mean, I was going to race motorcycles. I mean, it's really the only thing as a kid I was any good at. Pretty much just right then, I mean, at a young age dedicated my life to it and, you know, feel really fortunate to be able to make a living doing something I do love to do.

Q:
Nicky, being a world champion and coming here to Indianapolis, growing up next door in Kentucky, this must be a gigantic dream come true for you. Want to elaborate on that?

Nicky Hayden:
Yeah, really it is a dream come true. Getting to race MotoGP and race motorcycles is enough of a dream come true for me. But to, you know, get to race basically in my backyard and be a part of it is awesome. And the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, I mean the tradition and history here is second to none. I mean there's not a more famous place to race a motorcycle or car or line up anywhere in the world. So I think it's a big deal, not just for me but also our sport. I know MotoGP and all the riders and the people in the paddock are excited to be here and have this opportunity. You know, it's a big market for MotoGP to be on the East Coast and, you know, it's a big deal for us. That's the reason why, I mean I haven't, I can't say I've worked hard to promote it but a lot of people, Dorna, Red Bull and Indy themselves have put a lot of time and effort. So hopefully we get a good crowd, get some good weather and put on a good show.

Q:
Hi, Nicky. You tested here in April; is that correct?

Nicky Hayden:
Well, I didn't exactly test here. I rode the 1909, the 100-year-old Indian around and just did a few laps on a production bike. So no, it wasn't a real test but got to see the track and stuff.

Q:



Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
MotoGP champion Nicky Hayden does his bit to promote the forthcoming Indianapolis round to the Indy 500 crowd   [pic credit: IRL/Haines]
Hayden, German MotoGP Race 2014
Hayden, German MotoGP race 2014
Hayden, German MotoGP race 2014
Hayden, German MotoGP Race 2014
Hayden, German MotoGP 2014
Hayden, German MotoGP 2014
Hayden, German MotoGP 2014
Hayden, German MotoGP 2014
Hayden, German MotoGP 2014
Hayden, German MotoGP 2014
Hayden, German MotoGP 2014
Hayden, German MotoGP 2014
Hayden,  German MotoGP 2014
Hayden, German MotoGP 2014
Hayden, German MotoGP 2014
Hayden, German MotoGP 2014
Hayden, German MotoGP 2014

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Team Green

May 29, 2008 9:29 AM
Last Edited 2254 days ago

No I was not comparing titles. I said a fault can be found in any championship victory for those (usually bad losers) looking for one. 'The other guy won more' is a common excuse. Whatever had happened before, Rossi went in to the final round 8 points ahead of Hayden, who was carrying a shoulder injury from Portugal and had no obvious bike/tyre advantage over Rossi. It was all so easy for Hayden wasn't it? lol as you say. I'm not a massive Hayden fan, prefer a few other riders, but I have a lot of respect for someone who plays by the rules and beat Rossi head to head in a title showdown. Who else has done that? If/when a few others have done the same maybe I'll change my view.

Codger - Unregistered

May 28, 2008 1:43 PM

The rules were different for a while, only your best 8 results out of 10 counted for example. This was great because a rider could have a couple bad results and still be in with a chance. It was exciting in the second half the season as riders started to drop off their worst scores too. They scrapped it because riders were scoring enough points and not turning up (or not trying ) in the last couple of races. So I don't think that Nicky was at all "lucky" but you have to say that he wasn't the best rider that year, in fact, under the old points system he wouldn't be champion he would have been 3rd.



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