MotoGP to retire Nicky Hayden's no69


In memory of the ‘Kentucky Kid’, MotoGP will retire the number 69 at the US round

Nicky Hayden MotoGP 2008

Nicky Hayden will be honoured at the Circuit of the Americas MotoGP round in April as his number, 69, is retired.

The ‘Kentucky Kid’ became MotoGP champion in 2006 with Honda, moving to Ducati and then the Ducati customer Aspar Team (now Ángel Nieto team).

Hayden moved to World Superbikes in 2016, once again riding for Honda. He died in May 2017 while riding his bicycle in Italy.

His father, Earl, said: “What a great honour it will be for Nicky’s no69 to be retired at Austin.”

“It is very fitting that it will be done at the US race as these races meant so much to Nicky and he looked forward to them so much every year.

“For myself, in particular, this will be a very special event because the no69 was my number when I raced and I was very proud to see Nicky run the no69 on his bikes for his entire career.

“On behalf of my entire family I would like to say a special thanks to [MotoGP rights holder] Dorna for honouring Nicky in this special way along with the many other gestures they have done to support us through the difficult times.”

Dorna CEO Carmelo Ezpeleta added: “Nicky Hayden was one of the biggest assets to this paddock and a fantastic example as a rider both on track and off. It gives me great pleasure to honour his legacy once again and ensure the number 69 remains synonymous with a legend and a champion.”

Marco Simoncelli’s no58 was retired by MotoGP in 2016 in honour of the late rider, and Loris Capirossi’s no65 was retired the same year in honour of his 300 race starts.

More: 2019 MotoGP season calendar announced


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