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Hayden knee slider problem ends podium hopes

Nicky Hayden's hopes of challenging for a home podium in Sunday's Indianapolis Grand Prix ended when his left knee slider was ripped off early in the race.

Being unable to use his knee for balance on such a slick track was a major disadvantage, and the distraction of having the partially attached slider flapping around for the rest of the race didn't help either.

Hayden had held his third place start during the opening lap, but dropped back to seventh by lap six. The American was elevated to sixth, where he finished, after Ducati team-mate Casey Stoner crashed out on lap eight.

“I still can't believe what happened - I am so disappointed," said Nicky. "I lost the front slightly on the third lap and caught my left knee on a drain cover on one of the kerbs, right where the knee slider attaches to the velcro. It just about ripped me off of the bike.

"At first, I felt a sharp pain, obviously, and then I really didn't notice it until the end. It doesn't feel great, but I don't think I injured it.

"There are so many left-hand corners here and from that point on I had to take it really steady, I couldn't push anywhere and finished up with a huge hole in my leathers. I am incredibly disappointed because we had to the pace to put in a performance today.

"I haven't had this problem happen to me since I've been with Alpinestars. If it would have been the right side, maybe I could have been OK. I mean, at this level you can't have anything go wrong.

"Dani was so strong today. I knew he was going to be tough. But, I'm quite confident I could have fought for the podium. I was right there. I was fifth Friday, third Saturday. We were in a position we could have fought for the podium."

“What happened to Nicky is really incredible but he did brilliantly to finish the race in that situation and finish it so well," said team manager Vittoriano Guareschi. "I am gutted for him because he was in competitive shape and missed out on a possible podium."

Team-mate Casey Stoner, who crashed out of the race, lost a knee slider in a similar incident earlier in the weekend.

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Hayden and Stoner, Indianapolis MotoGP 2010
`Go Nicky` Hayden sign on starting grid, French MotoGP 2017
`Stay Strong Nicky` Hayden sticker on Marquez`s bike, French MotoGP 2017
`Stay Strong Nicky` Hayden sticker on Marquez`s bike, French MotoGP 2017
`Stay Strong Nicky` Hayden sticker on Marquez`s bike, French MotoGP 2017
`Stay Strong Nicky` Hayden sticker on Pedrosa`s bike, French MotoGP 2017
Stoner, French MotoGP 2017
Stoner, Tardozzi, French MotoGP 2017
Stoner, French MotoGP 2017
Sasaki with Hayden`s number, French Moto3 2017
Miller with Hayden`s number on his helmet, French MotoGP 2017
Miller with Hayden`s number on his helmet, French MotoGP 2017
Miller with Hayden`s number on his helmet, French MotoGP 2017
`Thinking of you Nicky` Hayden sign, French MotoGP 2017
Pol Espargaro, Spanish MotoGP 2017
Pedrosa, Dovizioso, Folger Spanish MotoGP 2017
Dovizioso, Lorenzo, Miller MotoGP race Grand Prix Of The Americas 2017
Pol Espargaro, Bautista Grand Prix Of The Americas, 2017

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Heavy E - Unregistered

August 30, 2010 2:30 PM

Just one of those freak things, just happened to put his knee down in exactly the wrong spot. IMO prep or gear had nothing to do with it. Dude wore his leathers through to the skin. Err, HIS skin. Props to him for continuing to push on as well as he did.


August 30, 2010 3:48 PM

Having suffered the same thing in club racing, I can say that it's a terrible distraction and anytime you do touch the ground with your exposed velcro remains, your knee grabs the asphalt again. This track is mostly lefts too, so nicky did as good a job as one could expect given his misfortune. He is incredibly fit and would have finished better .... but that doesn't really matter now. The important thing for him is that his crew praised his effort and he continued to build value with his employers. Anyone who wants to play down the significance of his situation in that race is ignorant of many things.

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