Melandri Signs One Year Contract With Hayate

The Marco Melandri saga is finally at an end. Today, Melandri confirmed that he has signed a contract with Hayate Racing to contest the MotoGP championship for one season, after being forced to tear up his two-year deal with Kawasaki.

The deal is a costly one for Melandri, both financially and in terms of his ability to compete. "I had to make a big financial sacrifice, but the most important thing that I wanted was to find trust," he told

He will certainly need some trust. Throughout the last test at Qatar, Melandri complained of issues with rear grip, and he expressed his hope that these problems could be fixed quickly. But as rear grip is a problem that the Kawasaki has had for the past two seasons, that sounds more like the voice of a Candide-like hope, rather than a realistic expectation. 

Melandri may feel he has no choice but to live in hope, however. "I have nothing to lose," he told "One month ago I had one foot outside the World Championship, and now I have a team that is working solely for me. My motivation is this, and to show Kawasaki that they made a mistake in choosing to pull out their factory support." In another month's time, at the season opener at Qatar, we shall see whether Melandri's hope as justified.

Back to top


I really hope the Hayate team does well in 2009, but I don't hold out a lot of real hope to be honest. Still, I'll cheer them on and might even buy some of that one season only limited edition merchandise!

If Marco had any sense he would change the name to Wakayate, paint it black stick a Silver Fern on the side tell Kiwi's it a matter of national pride that this POS goes well,results will follow thereafter............................

Hayate is roughly translated as "strong wind" in Japanese.I presume Marco will need every bit of tailwind to hang on to the back of the pack.
Hayate is also the name of one of the bullet trains which runs north from Tokyo past Utsunomyia which is the dropping off point for Motegi.After all the drama I hope he is at least vaguely competitive,I also will be buying some of the one time merchadise at Motegi.

Man, TwoStroke those gyoza are great..worth putting on an extra kilo or so every time I'm up there!!