News & Multimedia

Hayden To Stay In MotoGP With Aspar Team, Honda Motorcycle

2006 MotoGP World Champion Nicky Hayden will stay in the premier class for at least two more years after signing a deal to ride a Honda for the Aspar Team in 2014 and 2015.

Hayden, from Owensboro, Ky., will ride a Honda RCV1000R for Aspar, a Spanish privateer team run by former 125cc World Champion Jorge “Aspar” Martinez.

The bike is a “customer” version of Honda’s RC213V prototype and is believed to be only a small step down in specification from Honda’s factory machine, upon which rookie and 2013 Red Bull Indianapolis GP winner Marc Marquez is leading the World Championship this season. Retired World Champion Casey Stoner is testing the bike for Honda this year, and he recently said the machine’s performance exceeded his expectations.

The move to Aspar ends a frustrating five-year stint as a Ducati factory rider and signals a return to Honda for Hayden, 32. He raced for the Repsol Honda factory team for the first six seasons of his MotoGP career, from 2003-08, and won the world title with Honda in 2006. He has earned all three of his career MotoGP victories on a Honda.

“It is great news for the Power Electronics Aspar Team to have the acquired services of Honda and a rider of the profile of Nicky Hayden,” Martinez said. “We are taking a huge step forward in terms of quality, prestige and image. We have grown a lot in a short space of time, and we are all very excited about this new project with Honda. It is the factory that the Aspar Team first started with back in 1992, and I have great memories of that period. Our objective is to continue being a reference point in the premier class.

“I think the combination of Honda’s MotoGP production racer and Nicky Hayden is going to be a very successful one. We are thrilled to be working with a manufacturer with the history that Honda has and a rider like Nicky, a World Champion with huge experience.”

The signing ended a tense week for Hayden, one of the most popular riders in the sport. He was in final negotiations earlier this month to sign with Aspar to ride an Aprilia “customer” bike, but that deal disintegrated when Aprilia Racing boss Gigi Dall’Igna announced last week he was leaving the manufacturer to become the leader of Italian rival Ducati Racing starting in mid-November.

Aspar owner Martinez was reluctant to continue with Aprilia after the departure of the well-regarded Dall’Igna. The Aspar team considered leasing a customer Ducati next season, as Dall’Igna and Martinez are longtime friends and Aspar was a Ducati satellite team in the past. But running a Ducati may have forced Hayden to look elsewhere, as he was winless and scored just three podium finishes in five years with the Italian manufacturer.

So Martinez decided to run the Honda RC1000R, which also kept Hayden – who has strong ties to Honda’s racing arm and American Honda – committed to the Aspar team.

“It will be a big change for us after so many years working with Italian factories, but we have high hopes for this new project,” Martinez said. “We are up for the challenge, and we will give maximum effort to making sure the Power Electronics Aspar Team continues achieving top results.”

Hayden’s teammate in the two-bike team was not announced. Former 250cc World Champion Hiroshi Aoyama of Japan has been mentioned as a primary candidate due to his longtime ties with Honda.

The seventh Red Bull Indianapolis GP is scheduled for Aug. 8-10, 2014 on a revised motorcycle circuit at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway that will create even more exciting action. Hayden finished second at the inaugural event in 2008 on a Honda and third in 2009 on a Ducati.


***


2014 tickets: Tickets for the 2014 Red Bull Indianapolis GP will go on sale Monday, Nov. 4 by visiting www.ims.com/tickets, calling 800-822-INDY or 317-492-6700 or visiting the IMS Ticket Office at the IMS Administration Building at the corner of Georgetown Road and 16th Street between 8 a.m.-5 p.m. (ET) Monday-Friday.

Tickets for groups of 20 or more also are available. Contact the IMS Group Sales Department at 866-221-8775 for more information.

Information on camping at IMS during the Red Bull Indianapolis GP is available at www.ims.com/tickets. Hotel package information can be found at visitindy.com/redbullhotels.

 

Show More Show Less
Now Viewing
Hayden To Stay In MotoGP With Aspar Team, Honda Motorcycle
 
Hayden To Stay In MotoGP With Aspar Team, Honda Motorcycle
2006 MotoGP World Champion Nicky Hayden will stay in the premier class for at least two more years after signing a deal to ride a Honda for the Aspar Team in 2014 and 2015.
Read More
Related Media
Lilly Diabetes 250
 
Stage Lengths Set for Lilly Diabetes 250 Race on July 22 at IMS
Minor updates to the XFINITY Series race package for the summer race at the flat 2.5-mile oval are expected to alter the length of a fuel run; to compensate, the new stages for the Lilly Diabetes 250 (July 22, 3:30 p.m. ET, NBCSN, IMS Radio Network, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio) will be as follows: Stage 1 ends following Lap 30, Stage 2 ends following Lap 60 and the race is scheduled to end following Lap 100.
Read More
Takuma Sato
 
Sato Humbled By Hero's Welcome in Japan
Sato, the 40-year-old driver of the No. 26 Andretti Autosport Honda, has been living a whirlwind life since becoming the first Japanese driver to win “The Greatest Spectacle in Racing” on May 28. Following the Indianapolis 500 Championship Celebration on May 29, he left on a U.S. media tour for New York and Texas, then went straight to the doubleheader race weekend at Detroit’s Belle Isle. A few days later, it was on to Texas Motor Speedway.
Read More
Motorcycle Gran Prix
 
Brickyard Magic: Motorcycle Racer Returns to Action for First Time in 36 Years at IMS
Behel, 61, rode on a 1988 Yamaha R6 600cc bike as part of a Historic Moto Gran Prix (HMGP) partnership with the Sportscar Vintage Racing Association (SVRA). It’s the first time the bikes have been involved in the Brickyard Vintage Racing Invitational.
Read More
Sarah Fisher
 
Fisher Finds Fun in Indy Legends Pro-Am Victory with Familiar Family Feel at IMS
Fisher, 36, returned to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway this Friday and Saturday, now a happy mother of two. Daughter Zoey is 5, and son Daniel is 3. And although her days as a driver, as well as a series owner, are in her rear-view mirror, Fisher showed she can still go fast in the Indy Legends Charity Pro-Am race.
Read More
Johnny Unser
 
Emotions Flow on Father's Day as Johnny Unser Shows Daughter Racing Ropes at IMS
These are the kind of memories he was unable to have with his dad, so this Father’s Day at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway is incredibly sentimental for Johnny Unser. His quality time will be spent coaching 19-year-old daughter, Loni, as she drives a No. 8 1960 Porsche 356B Coupe with owner Marcus Pillion. She’s entered in a Sportscar Vintage Racing Association (SVRA) Group 3 Vintage Classic Enduro race Sunday as part of the fourth annual Brickyard Vintage Racing Invitational.
Read More
Items 1 - 5 of 2,657
Reserve one of our hospitality suites for your next event!
To start planning your event at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway please fill out our Information Request Form or contact IMS Sales Department at (317) 492-8739 or email at hospitalitysales@brickyard.com.
Latest Tweets
It's Pole day on @CrownRoyal Armed Forces Weekend & we can't wait to see you! Check out details on the day: https://t.co/yKQ6Db3YRK
May 21