Nicky Hayden held his hands up and apologised after crashing out of Ducati's home Italian Grand Prix at Mugello on Sunday.

After a poor start, the American was back inside the top six when he suffered his first DNF of the season after a lowside fall on lap 6 of 23.

"I screwed the start up and got beat up into turn one but I was able to make a couple of passes and thought I could fight for it," said Hayden. "My rhythm wasn't that good and I was just trying to make up too much time into that downhill corner.

"It was a rider error and it's a bummer because it's the team's home race and they've all worked really hard. All I can say is I'm sorry - that one was on me. I'm completely okay so that's the good thing but it still hurts. Thankfully there are still a lot of races to go."

"Nicky didn't make a great start and in an attempt to make up ground he went wide in one corner and crashed, but overall he showed once again that he is competitive and he confirmed that with another excellent qualifying session and by fighting in the top five in the race," said Ducati Motor Holding general director Claudio Domenicali.

Hayden is still the top Ducati rider in the world championship, holding fifth place but 51 points from Jorge Lorenzo.

Ducati meanwhile is still to claim a podium this season, with Hayden's team-mate Casey Stoner finishing fourth at Mugello - the same position Hayden had finished at the three previous 2010 races.

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