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Hayden makes the most of bike swaps

Hayden makes the most of bike swaps

Nicky Hayden enjoyed the one-off bike changes in Sunday’s Australian Grand Prix, making the most of an unfamiliar set of circumstances at Phillip Island.

As all riders were required to change bikes for new tyres on either the ninth or tenth laps, Hayden took advantage of the situation in his battle with Ducati Team colleague Andrea Dovizioso and Energy T.I. Pramac Racing’s Andrea Iannone.

"If I’m honest, I hoped to be more competitive, but it went better than some of our recent races," began Hayden, who finished seventh. "My first tyre didn’t feel as grippy as I expected. I was racing with Iannone and Dovi, but I knew I was faster than those guys and didn’t want to tow them.

“I waited to do the opposite to them, so when I saw them go in the pits I put my head down and did a good in-lap, then did a good lap leaving the pits and was able to put a couple of seconds onto them. I got to the back of Smith (Monster Yamaha Tech3) at the end, but I was struggling in the last corner and there were some spots of rain. As for the pit stop, it was easy. I’ve been with my team for five years and we practice it sometimes.”

Seventh place was Hayden’s best race result since finishing sixth in the Italian Grand Prix, staged at Mugello on 2 June.

MotoGP, 2013, AIRASIA GRAND PRIX OF JAPAN, Nicky Hayden, Ducati Team

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