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Hayden fourth, difficult sixth for Rossi

Hayden fourth, difficult sixth for Rossi

Nicky Hayden and Valentino Rossi finished the AirAsia British Grand Prix race fourth and sixth, respectively, with the Italian limiting damage in a challenging weekend, while the American posted the fastest lap of the race and finished just off the podium.

With the help of his team, Nicky Hayden found a good setup for the wet race, the only deterrent causing him to lose contact with the battle for the podium were the particularly treacherous conditions of the early laps, when he came close to crashing his GP11 on a couple of occasions.

Despite starting from the last row and not being completely comfortable with his bike’s setup, Valentino Rossi made up several positions and rode a controlled race, collecting ten precious points to retain fourth place in the series standings.

Nicky Hayden:
“To be honest, I really liked my chances for a podium in the rain today; if you’d have told me before the race that I could have fourth, I’d have said, ‘No thanks, I can do better,’ but I’m not disappointed with my ride. I didn’t get a great start because the clutch was jumpy, and for the first few laps, it was hard to see and to get heat in the tyres. I had a big moment on the exit of Turn 1 and actually jarred my shoulder pretty good, but I tried to hang in there. I saw Colin in front of me for the podium, and I really pushed. I think that’s the first time I’ve ever had the fastest lap on a Ducati, which is kind of cool even if you don’t get points for it. Full respect to Colin a week after breaking his collarbone, but I still don’t like him beating me for the podium! Thanks to the team. It hasn’t been an easy weekend for us, but we kept trying and got a pretty good chunk of points. We’ll take it and move on.”

Valentino Rossi:
“Without a doubt, this weekend was the most difficult so far this season, but we at least managed to do a good job of limiting the damage. Considering how we came into the race, sixth place is a fairly positive result that helps us to stay not too far from the top of the standings in fourth, which isn’t bad. We knew that my lack of experience here compared to the others would hurt us, but it’s also true that we haven’t managed to improve our setup as well as we should have. In fact, today Nicky managed to have a nice race and rode well, even setting the fastest lap, which demonstrates that the Ducati is competitive in the wet. We didn’t improve enough though, and that made it hard for me, as the bike was difficult to ride and I couldn’t push hard. We’re all responsible - me, the bike, and the team - so together we’ll try to improve and return to the level we were at in Le Mans and Catalunya as soon as possible, and then take another step forward.”

Ducati Team press release.

Tags:
MotoGP, 2011, AIRASIA BRITISH GRAND PRIX, Nicky Hayden, Valentino Rossi, Ducati Team

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