It is unlikely that the home crowd will have much to cheer about after tomorrow’s US Grand Prix with Nicky Hayden the leading American in tenth on the grid.
The Ducati rider, a two time Laguna Seca race winner, has had a tough weekend but has the experience of completing a race distance on the soft tyre. Speaking after qualifying Hayden said:
“It’s a long way from being over, it’s a 32 lap race so we’ll try and recover as best as we can,” said Hayden. “This morning I had a used tyre from yesterday and I’ve done a race distance on it and there wasn’t a problem. It’s strange because last year everyone raced the hard tyre and this year we’ve hardly used it. I haven’t seen a big drop off in tyre grip. I don’t expect it be as bad as Barcelona.”
When asked if he thinks that Jorge Lorenzo and Dani Pedrosa may suffer physically as the race wears on Hayden dismissed the possibility by saying:
“Dani and Jorge will be pretty strong, there’s a world championship on the line so they’ll find something extra. You can see what it means to them by racing here.”
The 2006 world champion went on to talk about the injuries from a riders perspective:
“Collarbones are never easy [injuries] because once you break them they break easier. The collarbone isn’t really a bone you need, I’ve broken mine, but once you break them they get weaker and weaker-look at Sete [Gibernau] those injuries ended his career. Dani’s tougher than he gets credit for. He’s come back from a lot of injuries and that takes a toll on you. I think he deserves a bit more credit, it’s not easy coming back especially for him being a small guy.”