Photography by Gold & Goose
Nicky Hayden will know after the first practice on Friday in Barcelona whether his recently repaired right hand will be good enough to allow him to give it a go in the Grand Prix of Cataluyna this weekend.
Hayden had surgery on his right wrist in Italy last week after missing the Italian Grand Prix in Mugello. The injury has been on-again, off-again for most of the season, though Mugello was the only race Hayden has missed this season. He had a non-scoring ride the weekend prior in Le Mans when he was knocked down in the first set of corners.
“I am happy to say my hand is feeling better then before surgery and in Mugello, but it’s only been seven days since the operation so still a bit to early to say how I will be in Barcelona,” Hayden said in a team release. “After resting it after surgery for a few days I know started rehabbing it, but I really have to wait a few more days to know my level and if it’s possible to go this weekend. I think I will try in FP1, see how I feel and discuss it with my team and doctors to know if we can do the race. For sure I would hate to miss another race after two non-point scores, but also we have to be smart and think long term and make a decision with both our heart and head. So we wait and see, hope for the best.”
Catalunya is a circuit that may favor the Open-class Honda, especially if they can make use of the advantages of using a soft tire.
“This track is fast and challenging with a bit of everything, and a lot of long corners with a lot of lean angle where if we can make the soft tire last it can help us be more competitive with the extra edge grip,” Hayden said.