HAYDEN HOPING TO HOLD ON AT MID-OHIO Defending AMA Supersport champ will ride with broken hand PICKERINGTON, Ohio (July 19, 2005) -- Tommy Hayden comes to the Pro Honda Oils Supersport Championship presented by Shoei event at Mid-Ohio...
HAYDEN HOPING TO HOLD ON AT MID-OHIO
Defending AMA Supersport champ will ride with broken hand
PICKERINGTON, Ohio (July 19, 2005) -- Tommy Hayden comes to the Pro Honda Oils Supersport Championship presented by Shoei event at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course on July 24, hoping to hold on -- figuratively and literally -- to his series lead.
Hayden suffered a broken right hand in the Laguna Seca Repsol Superstock race on July 10 and underwent surgery the next day to plate a broken bone. Nevertheless, he plans on racing at Mid-Ohio and hopes to nurse his hand and points lead in the series with three rounds remaining.
Hayden, whose brothers Nicky and Roger Lee have both won the Mid-Ohio Supersport race, will likely have to wait another year before he experiences a victory at the challenging circuit. He was uncharacteristically caught off guard while passing a rider at Laguna Seca during the Superstock final a week and a half ago and took a hard tumble. His injury means he will come to this weekend's race looking to score some valuable points if he can't challenge for the win.
"It was just one of those things that happens every once in awhile in racing," Hayden said of his crash. "I've made that kind of pass a hundred times before, but I cut it a little too close there and it got me."
Hayden expects to race at Mid-Ohio, but fortunately for the defending champ he has a large enough cushion in the standings that even if he finds he can't race he would not lose his points lead. The maximum a rider can score in a single round is 38 points and Hayden's lead is 41 points. Still, Hayden wants to maintain his comfortable margin.
Second in the standings is fellow Kawasaki teammate and defending Mid-Ohio winner Roger Lee Hayden, Tommy's youngest brother. Roger Lee rebounded from a terrible start of the season at Daytona and has rallied with a string of podium finishes, including a victory at Pikes Peak International Raceway in May.
"I hate to see Tommy get hurt like that," said the younger Hayden, who won last year's red-flag-shortened race. "Even though it gives me a little bit of a chance for the championship, it's not the way I wanted things to turn out. I'd like to defend my win at Mid-Ohio. The team has given me a really good bike and I think I have a good shot to repeat."
Roger Lee has the opportunity to become the first rider since 1988 to win back-to-back Mid-Ohio Supersport races.
Yamaha's Jason DiSalvo moved to third in the standings with a victory at Laguna Seca. It marked DiSalvo's first win of the season and he hopes to get on a roll with a follow-up win at Mid-Ohio. Yamaha has not won the Mid-Ohio Supersport race since 1994.
Ben Spies is another rider to watch at Mid-Ohio. The Yoshimura Suzuki rider is strong on the technical road course and is eager to give Suzuki its first Supersport win of the year.
The Pro Honda Oils Supersport presented by Shoei race is part of the Honda Super Cycle Weekend presented by Dunlop Tire. The race will be televised nationally on SPEED Channel beginning at 4 p.m. EST on Sunday, July 24.
For additional information contact Mid-Ohio at (614) 793-4600 or visit the website www.midohio.co