Tyre tests spoilt by crash for Hayden

Friday, 26 November 2004

Tyre tests spoilt by crash for Hayden

A day of planned Michelin tyre tests was spoilt for Nicky Hayden on Thursday when the American youngster suffered a heavy crash at Jerez. Hayden had been the fastest Honda rider on opening day of the test but admitted that the spill badly affected his confidence, as well as his RC211V machine.

"This morning didn't really get going like yesterday," said Hayden. "I had a pretty big crash that really messed the whole day up. HRC are looking into the causes but it was third gear and the bike went straight up and down.

"We've only got one machine here and the crash really did a number on the bike and the boys had to change nearly everything! Physically I was okay in the crash but it shook me up quite a bit.

"We managed to get out there again towards the end of the day and put in quite a few laps but I never got back in the times that I know I should be doing. I've had better thanksgiving days in my life before but that's what you get in the sport. Some days are better than others and today wasn't one of the good ones."

On Wednesday Hayden set the pace with 91 laps of the Spanish circuit, starting the test with his new-look team under the guidance of New Zealander Pete Benson, his former Telemetry Engineer. The team concentrated on finding a good base setting for the rolling chassis, seeking the ideal combination of suspension, tyres and the latest chassis developments based on data acquired at the Valencia test session earlier this month.

"It's been a few weeks since we've been on a bike and it's nice to get back," said Hayden. "The weather has been great, which has been positive. Almost every time I've been here in the past it seems to have rained. After the race last year was the first real time I have ridden here in the dry. We've got a lot of things to get through in three days here.

"The thing in testing is not to get too mixed up. We have to look at what's going on and figure out what is working well and what is not working so well. The new team seems to be getting along just fine. It's early days yet but a change was definitely needed."
TAGS 2004 Nicky Hayden

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