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Hayden eager to find that extra edge

Hayden eager to find that extra edge

The Ducati Team rider says he is ready to push hard for his first podium of the season, ahead of the Gran Premi Aperol de Catalunya.

Having been so close to the podium but just missing out on a number of occasions this season, Nicky Hayden is due his first top three finish of 2010 and the American believes that when it does come it will help push his season along.

Of the six races so far Hayden has finished fourth on four occasions, and the Ducati Team rider believes the minor step up to the rostrum places is tantalisingly close as he prepares for this weekend’s Gran Premi Aperol de Catalunya.

“We were happy with fourth at Qatar (in the opening race) but now that’s not our goal, and a podium sure would help things along,” said Hayden. “The team is doing a great job and it’s all there, we just have to put it all together. It’s not something that’s way out there: it’s just a little bit. We just need to put the whole weekend together, and I think it’s there.”

Evidently enjoying riding the Desmosedici GP10 but desperate for the elevation in results that would provide a tangible reward for that, Hayden continued: “We’ve been close but it’s that next step up we haven’t made, which is what’s frustrating. I’m more comfortable on the bike, more so than I was last year. But you always want more. This year’s bike is physically a lot easier for me to ride.”

Montmeló is a circuit at which Hayden finished tenth in his first year with Ducati last season, and he is prepared for a technical challenge in extremely hot conditions. “The last two corners are the hardest, they’re downhill and you have to push a lot so it’s very technical. Turn 4 is also a unique one.”

Bridgestone have provided an asymmetric extra hard rear tyre option to deal with the conditions, about which Hayden added: “The weather hurts grip here and I’m not sure the hot weather helps, you need a lot of edge grip here. The asymmetrics are pretty safe. They have to be hard and strong here, as it is hard on the tyres.”

MotoGP, 2010, GRAN PREMI APEROL DE CATALUNYA, Nicky Hayden, Ducati Team

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