The MotoGP Championship of 2006 was not an easy racing year. Back and forth dogfights between championship leaders Valentino Rossi, Dani Pedrosa and American Nicky Hayden were fierce. However, Hayden weathered the storm and became the 2006 world champion. Now, in the twilight of his career, the Kentucky Kid had joined the World Superbike Championship, but a new tragedy has cut his bid for further glory short.
How Did We Lose MotoGP World Champion Nicky Hayden?
At Estoril during the 2006 MotoGP season, Nicky’s hopes to win the title were dashed. His teammate and fellow championship contender, Dani Pedrosa, speared Hayden’s motorcycle. The crash took both riders out of the points, but not out of contention. At the Valencia round, Valentino Rossi, the championship leader, crashed in the race’s opening laps. This created a point deficit the Italian couldn’t overcome, and Nicky won the championship by crossing the line in 3rd place. So, this motorcycling titan is no stranger to adversity, but a crash in Italy has brought an end to the story of one of America’s best motorcycle racers.
While bicycle training in Rimini, Italy, a car barreled into the back of Hayden’s bicycle. The bike was split in two while the motorcycle champion bounced off the hood and windshield of the car. Italian emergency crews rushed to the scene and transported Nicky to a local hospital. Once stabilized, Nicky was transported to Maurizio Bufalini Hospital in Cesena, Italy. However, five days after entering the intensive care unit, Nicky succumbed to his injuries. He was surrounded by members of his Red Bull Honda team, his mother Rose, his brother Tommy and fiancée Jackie Marin.
Cycling is a common training method for people who like to ride motorcycles. It trains many of the same muscles a rider needs to handle their motorcycle properly, but bicycles are subject to many of the same dangers that affect motorcycles. This Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month, the attorneys who ride want to remind you that bicycle safety goes hand-in-hand with motorcycle safety.
Ride on, Kentucky Kid—from the Metier Law Firm.