Ducati has renewed the contract with Nicky Hayden, making the 29-year-old Kentuckian teammates with Valentino Rossi in 2011/2012.
Hayden, who won the 2006 Championship on a Honda, joined Ducati in 2009, finishing 13th that year. He currently sits in sixth in the 2010 championship with 99 points, just one place behind his future teammate.
At this weekend’s Red Bull Indianapolis Grand Prix, Hayden qualified in third on his Ducati GP10. Hayden’s contract is a two-year deal.
Nicky Hayden says: "I am very proud to be signing for Ducati again. Last year I felt like I rode for Ducati but now I really feel as if I am a Ducati rider. The team, sponsors and Ducati fans have really taken me in and supported me a lot and I really hope to pay them back with the results they deserve."
"Next year I’ll be teamed with some guy named Rossi who knows a little something about bikes! We’re going to have a strong squad – I won’t predict results but I have no doubt this team will have some real passion, real worth ethic and a lot of fun. It is the start of a new era at Ducati and it is an honor for me to be a part of it."
Filippo Preziosi (Ducati Corse Director) says: "We are really pleased that Nicky will be staying with us for the next two years. It is no secret that he is a rider who never gives up, his whole racing history shows it. As a person his tenacity is an example for us all because he shows us that nothing is impossible if you truly believe."
"His progress since arriving at Ducati has been impressive and I am sure this trend will continue in the future. Nicky is also a special rider because of his attention to every detail and for him having Valentino as his teammate means a huge contribution towards the development of an even more competitive motorcycle. I think it is these characteristics that have won the hearts of all the Ducatisti and that is the reason why a Ducati is the bike for him right now."