Roger Over and Out

Henny Ray Abrams | August 30, 2008

BRASELTON, GA, AUG 30: Monster Kawasaki’s Roger Lee Hayden has withdrawn from this weekend’s racing at Road Atlanta after breaking a bone in his left hand in a Friday qualifying crash. “Roger (Hayden) has no strength in his hand/wrist from yesterday’s fall and his shoulder is also very sore and weak this morning,” team manager Mike Preston said in an e-mail. “So we made a collective decision to keep him off the bikes for safety. This is a very physical track and we can’t risk him or others if he’s not good to go.” Hayden had just put a soft tire on the back of his ZX-10RR when he lost the front end going down the esses from turns four to five in Friday’s lone Superbike qualifying session. Though he didn’t hit anything, he slid a long way, stopping just before a concrete retaining wall. “I crashed late, so I missed the wall and the air fence, thank god; I just slid forever,” he said. “When I got done sliding I was pretty close to the wall.” And he was holding his left wrist. “I’m not sure how I hurt my left hand by crashing in a right-hander,” he said. A trip to a local hospital confirmed that he’d broken a bone. That influenced his decision not to ride. “This track’s so hard changing direction and stuff with a hand jacked up,” he said, “I don’t know if it’d be worth it. “The weekend was going pretty good. At that time, we were fourth or fifth and we had just put the soft tire on. And the 600 we were fourth, right there with the top couple guys besides (Ben) Bostrom, so just after the way the year’s gone it felt good to kind of be somewhat competitive and this was just another hit.” It’s been a tough weekend all around for the Haydens. Rockstar Makita Suzuki’s Tommy Hayden had his times disallowed from Friday Superbike qualifying after the crankshaft in his Suzuki GSX-R1000 was found to be out of compliance. Nicky Hayden qualified his Repsol Honda RC212V 16th out of 18 at the San Marino Grand Prix. He isn’t close to full strength after breaking his heel at the X Games four weeks ago.

Henny Ray Abrams | Contributing Editor

Abrams is the longest-serving contributor at Cycle News. Over the course of his 35-some years of writing and shooting photos, he’s covered events from MotoGP to the Motocross World Championship - and everything in between.