The following is from Indianapolis Motor Speedway...American riders Roger Lee Hayden, Jason DiSalvo and Kenny Noyes began to get familiar with the Indianapolis Motor Speedway during testing Aug. 19-20, preparing for the Red Bull Indianapolis GP on Aug. 27-29.All three riders will compete in the new Moto2 class during the annual Grand Prix motorcycle race at IMS. Moto2 replaced the 250cc class this season. Riders compete on bikes with 600cc Honda engines and Dunlop tires, with the emphasis placed on lower costs and rider skill.Hayden, from Owensboro, Ky., turned the most test laps on the No. 34 Team Honda/Moriwaki machine that he will race as a wild-card entry. Legendary 1993 500cc World Champion Kevin Schwantz is the team manager. Full-time World Superbike rider Hayden is the younger brother of 2006 MotoGP World Champion Nicky Hayden, who has finished on the podium in each of the first two Red Bull Indianapolis GP races. "The track is really nice," Roger Lee Hayden said. "We'd like to get a top 10. It's not going to be easy. It's going to be difficult. We're going to have to do our best, riding my best ever. The bike's going to have to be performing well, but that's our goal."Di Salvo, from Stafford, N.Y., turned laps on the No. 42 FTR M210 that he will race as a wild-card entry. Longtime American Motorcyclist Association standout DiSalvo has made two Grand Prix starts during his career and also started this season in World Supersport, so he has experience competing at the world level. But he realizes that racing in front of Grand Prix team bosses next weekend is a big opportunity."I just want to try to come and validate the performances we had in World Supersport this season," DiSalvo said. "The bike we were on, we felt wasn't quite what it should have been, so subsequently we're not with the team anymore. But it's cool because it gives us an opportunity to do some fun and really exciting stuff like a wild card at the American Grand Prix. I just want to put on a good show for everyone and try to make the American fans proud and just have a good result."Full-time Moto2 rookie Noyes, from Borrego Springs, Calif., tested on a Kawasaki 600 instead of his regular No. 9 Jack & Jones by A. Banderas Moto2 bike. MotoGP rules prevent full-time series riders from testing on their race bikes outside of official series tests."It's the coolest thing," Noyes said. "I've come here to the Brickyard to come to the Museum when I raced dirt-track, and to actually be racing here in the World Championship, representing the United States, is an awesome feeling."It actually seems more of a simple track on paper than when you get out there. It's got some corners where it's really important to line up for the next transition. It's a really good thing that we got out here and got to see it so on Friday we're not so far behind like we've been at so many other places. A great opportunity."The new Moto2 formula has attracted grids of 40 motorcycles or more at nearly every race. One of the most exciting moments of any MotoGP event weekend is watching at least 40 bikes pile-drive into Turn 1 on the first lap of the Moto2 race, with bikes sometimes spread five- and six-wide to get the edge into the first corner.Moto2 riders practice from 1:55-2:55 p.m. Friday, Aug. 27, with another practice from 9:55-10:55 a.m. Saturday, Aug. 28. The 26-lap Moto2 race is scheduled for 1:15 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 29.
Moto2 TEST AMERICAN RIDER QUOTES:JASON DiSALVO (Stafford, N.Y.): "It's a great track, and it really suits our bike well. One of the things I like about the circuit is just the unique corners. There's a lot of corners where the entry kind of fades into the turn. I think a lot of it comes from the Formula One track running backward.It was kind of set up for those guys really to get a run on to some of the longer straightaways. But for us, coming the other way, it makes for a unique entrance and definitely I think it's going to set up some good passing opportunities here. And overall, I'm just super-pumped to be out here at Indianapolis. This is probably the most famous racetrack in the whole world. It's cool to be out here, flashing across the bricks at triple-digit speeds." (About the track surface): "We've only had an opportunity to test this bike at one other track. It was quite bumpy. It was up in western Michigan, and it was really kind of bumpy and definitely very demanding on the bike and the suspension. Some of the GP guys, the GP regulars, would consider this track to be bumpy. But for me, coming from the only track we've tested on, this is like a pool table.It's really cool, and the bike seems to like it a lot. So hopefully we'll just keep improving our pace around here and be ready come race time next week." (Do you feel pressure to perform in front of Grand Prix teams next weekend? Are you in the shop window?): "Definitely, to some extent. I know for me, I've been around this industry for a long time. Started the season out in World Supersport. Really, I just want to try to come and validate the performances we had in World Supersport this season. With the bike we were on, we felt wasn't quite what it should have been, so subsequently, we're not with the team anymore. But it's cool because it gives us an opportunity to do some fun and really exciting stuff like a wild card at the American Grand Prix. I just want to put on a good show for everyone and try to make the American fans proud and just have a good result."
ROGER LEE HAYDEN (Owensboro, Ky.): "The track is really nice, really safe. It's fun. A few of the corners were tighter than I thought they'd be, which is not a bad thing. But most of the European circuits you see, they're fast tracks. That's the only one thing that's a little different. But I like the track, overall. It's really fun." (About expectations for the race): "We'd like to get a top 10. It's not going to be easy. It's going to be difficult.We're going to have to do our best, riding my best ever. The bike's going to have to be performing well, but that's our goal. Those guys have been riding all season, so it's kind of an uphill battle. But we've did three tests, and the team is working extremely hard, and I think we're feeding off each other. We all have the same goal in mind, and we want to do really well next week."
KENNY NOYES (Borrego Springs, Calif.): "First impression was it's pretty awesome. Just being here, even though the grandstands are empty, seeing the size of everything, it's a lot different from the tracks over in Europe. It's got a lot of technical corners. It actually seems more of a simple track on paper than when you get out there. It's got some corners where it's really important to line up for the next transition. I did feel some of the asphalt changes out there, but it seemed pretty smooth. A couple of places I thought were going to be bumpier from watching the MotoGP race. It seemed like a really awesome track. It's going to be important to have a good setup. It's a really good thing that we got out here and got to see it so on Friday we're not so far behind like we've been at so many other places. A great opportunity." (Unlike Roger and Jason, you started road racing in Europe. When is the last time you raced in the States?): "I came back and did some AMA races. We were going to come back to the AMA after being up front in Spain. Before this came, we were going to come back to AMA. I went to Virginia and Ohio two years ago. But you're right: I started over in Europe, especially in Spain. I know those tracks really well. So that's where we've been the most competitive this year. Hopefully the most here guys will have is two years experience, so hopefully here it can be a little more like our home track." (About being an American racing at Indianapolis):"It's the coolest thing. I've come here to the Brickyard to come to the Museum when I raced dirt-track, and to actually be racing here in the World Championship, representing the United States, is an awesome feeling."