Former Mo­togp champ loses life in cy­cle ac­ci­dent

Motorcycle News (UK) - - Front Page - By Oli Rushby BSB REPORTER

Nicky Hay­den passed away on Mon­day night just as MCN went to press, suc­cumb­ing to in­juries sus­tained in a col­li­sion with a car while cy­cling in Italy last week. Hav­ing stayed in Europe fol­low­ing the fifth round of the WSB World Cham­pi­onship in Imola, Hay­den – a keen cy­clist – was on a train­ing ride in Ri­mini, just me­tres from the Misano World Cir­cuit, when he was in col­li­sion with a Peu­geot 206 at around 2pm Euro­pean time, on Wed­nes­day, May 17.

The 2006 Mo­togp world cham­pion was tended to by medics at the scene be­fore be­ing taken to a lo­cal hospi­tal. Once his con­di­tion had been sta­bilised, he was trans­ferred to the Mau­r­izio Bu­falini Hospi­tal in Ce­sena, where he re­mained on a life support ma­chine in in­ten­sive care un­til Mon­day evening.

Through­out his time in in­ten­sive care, in­for­ma­tion about his con­di­tion was care­fully guarded, with a state­ment from the Red Bull Honda World Su­per­bike team on Thurs­day con­firm­ing only that Hay­den had sus­tained mul­ti­ple trau­matic in­juries. Fur­ther state­ments re­leased by the team and Dorna, or­gan­is­ers of both the Mo­togp and WSB, only af­firmed Hay­den’s con­di­tion as ‘ex­tremely crit­i­cal’.

Fi­ancée Jackie, close friend Nick San­nen, and mem­bers of the Red Bull Honda team rushed to his bed­side, and were later joined by his mother, Rose and brother, Tommy, who flew in on Thurs­day from the USA. Hay­den’s fa­ther, Earl re­mained in Owens­boro after re­cent health is­sues of his own, along with Nicky’s other brother Roger and sis­ters Kathleen and Jenny.

Worst pos­si­ble news

As MCN went to press on Mon­day night, the news came through that Hay­den had lost his fight for life.

An of­fi­cial state­ment from his Red Bull Honda World Su­per­bike Team broke the news: “Nicky passed away at 19:09 CEST this evening at Mau­r­izio Bu­falini Hospi­tal in Ce­sena, Italy. His fi­ancée Jackie, mother Rose and brother Tommy were at his side.

“Through­out his ca­reer Nicky’s pro­fes­sion­al­ism and fight­ing spirit was greatly val­ued and car­ried him to nu­mer­ous suc­cesses, in­clud­ing his child­hood dream of be­ing crowned Mo­togp World Cham­pion with Honda in 2006. As well as be­ing a true cham­pion on the track, Nicky was a fan favourite off it due to his kind na­ture, re­laxed de­meanour, and the huge smile he in­vari­ably car­ried ev­ery­where.

“The ‘Ken­tucky Kid’ will be sorely missed by all that ever had the plea­sure of meet­ing him or the priv­i­lege to see him race a mo­tor­cy­cle around a track.”

Nicky’s brother, Tommy Hay­den, added: “On be­half of the whole Hay­den fam­ily and Nicky’s fi­ancée Jackie I would like to thank ev­ery­one for their mes­sages of support – it has been a great com­fort to us all know­ing that Nicky has touched so many peo­ple’s lives.

“Although this is ob­vi­ously a sad time, we would like ev­ery­one to re­mem­ber Nicky at his hap­pi­est – rid­ing a mo­tor­cy­cle. He dreamed as a kid of be­ing a pro rider and not only achieved that but also man­aged to reach the pin­na­cle of his cho­sen sport in be­com­ing World Cham­pion. We are all so proud of that.

“Apart from th­ese ‘pub­lic’ mem­o­ries, we will also have many great and happy mem­o­ries of Nicky at home in Ken­tucky, in the heart of the fam­ily. We will all miss him ter­ri­bly.

“It is also im­por­tant for us to thank all the hospi­tal staff for their in­cred­i­ble support – they have been very kind. With the fur­ther support of the au­thor­i­ties in the com­ing days we hope to have Nicky home soon.”

Ev­ery­one at MCN sends their deep­est sym­pa­thies to Nicky Hay­den’s fi­ancée, fam­ily and friends. A full trib­ute will ap­pear in next week’s is­sue as we cel­e­brate Nicky’s life and ca­reer.

‘We would like ev­ery­one to re­mem­ber Nicky at his hap­pi­est’ TOMMY HAY­DEN

Sick­en­ing dam­age to the Peu­geot shows the force of the col­li­sion

The junc­tion where the ac­ci­dent hap­pened, close to Misano cir­cuit

Brothers – Nicky, Tommy and Roger Lee

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