Due to the lack of testing before the official start of the 2012 MotoGP Championship at Qatar April 8, Ducati Team’s Nicky Hayden will join the Ducati Test Team during the final two days of a three-day test at Mugello this week.
Hayden will be on the Italian circuit Wednesday and Thursday, making up time lost in winter testing. Hayden missed some testing, and performed minimal laps at the Sepang I testing session due to recovering from
a shoulder injury the Kentuckian sustained while flat-track training
over the winter break.
Ducati says: “This will give the American the opportunity to carry out setup tests that he wasn’t able to complete prior to the start of the 2012 season. He’ll join official test rider Franco Battaini, who is already on track today as he continues his development work on the GP12. As usual, these updates will be tried by Valentino Rossi and Nicky Hayden during future tests.”
Regarding the shoulder injury, Hayden underwent successful arthroscopic surgery on his right shoulder in Fremont, Calif., in February.
During the operation, Dr. Arthur Ting repaired a tear in the labrum. Following the surgery, Hayden met with the surgeon once again on Tuesday for a follow-up exam, and things were cleared for Hayden to return to Kentucky and start recovering.
At the 2012 Qatar MotoGP, Hayden finished sixth, the highest-placed Ducati rider. As for his teammate, Rossi finished 10th. The next round of the 2012 MotoGP Championship arrives April 27-29 at Jerez in Spain.