Jennifer Hayden, Tommy Hayden, Kathleen Hayden, Roger Hayden, Rose Hayden, Earl Hayden - Tom Miller photo
American Honda congratulates the family of late roadracing and dirt track star Nicky Hayden for being inducted into the Motorsports Hall Of Fame of America. While the Hall of Fame is located at Daytona International Speedway, this year's ceremony was held at the M1 Concourse in Pontiac, Michigan. The award was presented by former Honda team manager Gary Mathers, and received by Nicky's younger brother Roger Hayden; Roger also kicked off the event by riding a lap of honor aboard a Repsol edition CBR1000RR while carrying the American flag, as Nicky often did following his major wins.
"On behalf of the entire motorcycling community, congratulations to the Hayden family for this prestigious recognition of Nicky's accomplishments on and off the track," said Bill Savino, Senior Manager of Customer Engagement at American Honda. "The Kentucky Kid will always occupy a place in our hearts – as a racer, but especially as a person – and we're pleased that the Hall of Fame also recognizes how exceptional he was."
Nicky Hayden rode for American Honda-backed teams in AMA roadracing classes between 1999 and 2002, earning the AMA 600 Supersport Championship and AMA Pro Athlete of the Year Award in 1999, and the AMA Superbike Championship and Daytona 200 win in 2002. During part of that tenure, he also rode Hondas in a scrappy AMA Flat Track side project, famously joining brothers Tommy and Roger to lead a Hayden-family podium sweep of the 2002 Springfield TT.
Nicky then joined the factory Repsol Honda team in MotoGP from 2003 to 2008, earning the 2006 MotoGP World Championship. He rode for a private Honda MotoGP team in 2014 and 2015, before switching to Honda's World Superbike team. In 2017, Hayden tragically lost his life in a bicycle accident during a training ride in Italy. In 2018, Hayden was also posthumously inducted into the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame, one of the motorcycling world's top recognitions.