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Hayden digs in after disappointing debut.

Nicky Hayden has revealed that sensor and clutch problems contributed towards a disappointing grand prix debut as a Ducati Marlboro rider in Friday's free practice session at Qatar.

The 2006 world champion, who has moved to Ducati after six years at Repsol Honda, finished the 45-minute session in 13th position, over two seconds behind pace setting team-mate Casey Stoner.

“Today wasn't a great day. To start with I had a problem with a sensor on my first bike and I had to come back after just three laps of my first run and change to my second bike,” explained the American. “The set-up wasn't the same and the clutch wasn't quite right. The 45 minutes flew by and we weren't able to get back on the pace we set here in the test.

“Obviously I'm going to need both sessions tomorrow to work something out and get on the pace,” he admitted. “Casey and Valentino are already looking really quick but we're not too far off the group behind them. Hopefully with the right changes to the bike tomorrow we can get amongst them.”

Hayden, fifth fastest at last month's Qatar test, is presently one second away from fourth placed Jorge Lorenzo.

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Hayden, Qatar MotoGP 2009
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Morbidelli leads start, Moto2 race, Qatar MotoGP 2017
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cyclebum - Unregistered

April 11, 2009 12:54 AM

Although Nicky has under impressed me even in his title win year, he has shown a willingness to work hard and the ability to learn. Off the bike you gotta love him because he gives great interview. IMO he will do better than those who preceded him and with lots less crying.

WankerSpanker - Unregistered

April 11, 2009 1:27 PM

Obviously a disappointing evening for Hayden, following on the heals of a disappointing afternoon in Jerez, both times hampered by sensors and clutch issues forcing him onto his backup bike. However it's a bit early to send Nicky back to the dirt track. Fact is very few posting here know what it's like to compete at even the national level much less world class racing. The politics and pressure, the physical demands, and the nerve to find the limits of even a stock 600 are beyond most of you bench racing couch potatoes. So give it a rest. Imagine 18 GP bikes lined up nose to tail at 200mph. Now say 1 potato 2 potato. Hayden is passing in 13th position. B4 you can grab another bag of crisps.

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