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
Mustang Club of America
 
Mustang Club Roars Into IMS for Labor Day Weekend
The Indianapolis Motor Speedway is welcoming the Mustang Club of America’s 40th Anniversary Celebration from Sept. 1-4, as some 10,000 Mustang enthusiasts from around the world are expected to visit and celebrate the rich history of the original “pony car.”
Read More
James Hinchcliffe
 
James Hinchcliffe to Star in ABC's 'Dancing with the Stars' This Fall
The Mayor is going dancing. Verizon IndyCar Series driver James Hinchcliffe was named today as a member of the Season 23 cast for "Dancing with the Stars," the hit ABC dance competition partnering celebrities with professional dancers that begins Sept. 12.
Read More
Courtney Force and Graham Rahal
 
Rahal Claims Closest Texas Motor Speedway Finish in Firestone 600
The Firestone 600, begun on June 12 but paused after heavy rainfall, resumed Saturday night after a 76-day postponement with Hinchcliffe (No. 5 Arrow Electronics Honda) leading the field to the restart on Lap 74. The remaining 174 laps provided an absolute thrill show as Hinchcliffe and Rahal (No. 15 Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing Honda) duked it out to the checkered flag, with Rahal sweeping past Hinchcliffe in Turn 3 on the final lap that gave him the advantage to earn his fourth career win in electrifying fashion.
Read More
Kyle Larson
 
Larson Gets First Sprint Cup Win at Michigan
The victory came in Larson's 99th start in the series, long after most observers expected Larson to record his first win. It also broke a 99-race drought for Chip Ganassi Racing, dating to Jamie McMurray's victory at Talladega in October 2013.
Read More
Ed Carpenter
 
Pruett's Preview: Firestone 600, Continued
With the Verizon IndyCar Series and TMS left to halt the race after 72 laps (173 kilometers) and multiple delays due to bad weather, the ninth race on the 2016 tour will take the green flag after a 78-day hold. And with 177 laps (427km) left to complete, teams will receive two brief 10-minute warmup sessions before the field is placed into the positions each driver held on the last lap in June and sent into furious action at 9 p.m. ET on NBCSN.
Read More
Items 1 - 5 of 2,308
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 Laura Wyamn at (317) 492-8557 or email at lwyman@brickyard.com.
Latest Tweets
Mustang Club Roars Into IMS for Labor Day Weekend - https://t.co/NV7D7I8j5H https://t.co/TSkZ99dM1a
about 12 minutes ago