Leon Camier To Replace Nicky Hayden For Indianapolis And Brno MotoGP Rounds

After his seat in the IODA Racing team fell through due to a lack of funds, Leon Camier is to race in MotoGP in 2014 after all. The Englishman is to replace Nicky Hayden on the Drive M7 Aspar Honda RCV1000R for both the Indianapolis and Brno rounds of MotoGP. 

Hayden had surgery last week to remove a row of bones in his right hand, including the scaphoid he injured in a crash in 2011. On Tuesday, Hayden was examined for the first time after surgery, and although his recovery is going well, he will require an extended period of rehabilitation before he is ready to return to race. As a result, Hayden will be forced to skip both the Indianapolis and Brno rounds of MotoGP, in the hope of returning to action at Silverstone at the end of August.

In the meantime, Camier is to ride his production RCV1000R for the two rounds, making his debut in the premier class at last. The Englishman will face an uphill task at Indianapolis, acclimatizing to the Bridgestone tires at a notoriously difficult circuit, and one which he has never ridden. A week later, Camier will face a slightly easier challenge, racing at Brno which he knows from his time in World Superbikes.

Since learning that the IODA Racing team did not have the funds to field a second Aprilia RSV4 for Camier, the Englishman has been filling in as a replacement rider in World Superbikes. He took the seat of Sylvain Barrier on the BMW S1000RR EVO bike, and replaced the injured Claudio Corti on the MV Agusta F4RR. He was also on standby to replace Nicky Hayden earlier in the year, after Hayden suffered a flare up of the wrist injury, but Hayden continued to race. Camier will now get his chance to ride Hayden's bike, since the American decided to opt for surgery to fix the problem.

Below is the press release from the Drive M7 Aspar team:

Nicky Hayden recovery process from wrist operation is favourable

Nearly a week after surgery, Drive M7 Aspar rider underwent his first examination on Tuesday and received positive news

After undergoing surgery on his right wrist at the Oasis Center of San Diego last Wednesday, and after resting for several days, DRIVE M7 Aspar rider Nicky Hayden was examined on Tuesday for the first time since the operation. According to Dr. James Chao, the physician in charge of the surgery, the procedure was a success and his recovery is on track. The American rider will gradually regain movement in his wrist.

Hayden has had his wrist immobilised and has been resting since Wednesday of last week, but this Tuesday he underwent his first review. During the examination he was injected with platelet-rich plasma to help regenerate bone structure and also received magnetic therapy to accelerate the healing of the operated area. The need for adequate recovery time requires Hayden to miss the MotoGP rounds at Indianapolis and the Czech Republic.

A fitness plan has been devised for Hayden to keep in shape during his layoff, so that when he returns to action he will be at 100%. The DRIVE M7 Aspar team will field Superbike rider Leon Camier for the Indianapolis and Czech Republic rounds that follow the summer break, standing in for Hayden.

Nicky Hayden: "Although undergoing surgery is not usually a positive thing -not least because you lose a lot of time- I'm happy with how the operation went last week. Sometimes it is difficult, but we know that injuries are part of our sport and we must learn to manage them. Everyone knows that my wrist has been causing me problems, especially at recent races. I underwent an operation in June, which helped me to complete the first half of the season, but the truth is I've been riding with a lot of discomfort, and have been unable to perform at my best. So, together with the team, we decided to make an important decision and undergo a larger operation to treat an injury that comes from three years ago -when I broke my scaphoid and did not heal well. According to Dr. Chao the operation was a success and I am very happy, and focusing on my recovery. My right wrist still needs to be immobilised for another week. Then I will begin rehabilitation therapy, and I'll slowly recover mobility. I want to thank the team, sponsors and fans for all the support they are giving me at this time. In the first examination, a week after surgery, I received an injection of platelet-rich plasma to help heal bones. According to the doctor my recovery is on course, which is very positive. It takes patience, but if I have made the decision to have surgery it is to get back to my best. I made the decision thinking about being healthy for the end of the season and already thinking about next year."

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I know Nicky has been downplaying the severity of his wrist injury, but the last person I'd expect to bow out this far in advance of any round (let alone his home track) is Nicky. Not good. Hopefully he'll be fully fit for Silverstone and can show everyone that he's good to go. About the only good news I can think of is that he's got a 2-year contract with Aspar so it's less likely they'll drop him for someone younger. Still though, contracts in MotoGP seem hardly binding.

Good luck to Camier though... he's been great in WSBK.

It looks like the fallout from the implosion of the AMA series is finally being felt throughout. It looks like we could be left with not a single American in motoGP next year, and so far, only one American in the whole paddock - who is yet to score a point this year.

Its a mighty shame that the AMA championship ceased to be any good, we've had the same thing in Australia for the last few years. We have a good championship this year but its not quite producing top tier international riders yet
It might take a while, but the quick kids (with parents that have enough money) will move to Spain when they're 15 and come through the CEV. You'll only notice the difference if they're good enough to get on the podium then you'll wonder what accent that is...im looking at you Jack Miller.

And don't even mention the lack of New Zealanders! I agree that the Aus championship needed serious attention, our trip to Eastern Creek last year was underwhelming - Paeroa's battle of the streets was far more entertaining.

Hopefully all the colonial championships can get it together and start producing riders that are able to battle the Europeans again, and be taken seriously by talent spotters as viable feeders.

He might come back and be fine....but one wrong landing and it may be the end of movement with that wrist altogether....

I think you are right though, he should retire to save his wrist....surely he doesnt need the money....

If anything it gives a chance to a new face...he could bow out and try to persuade ASPAR with American Honda and Dorna to get a new American from AMA to take his place in 2015+

It's hard to give up doing something that defines your entire life, until you're ready to do so or have no choice in the matter. Nicky still has a choice and he surely loves riding fast bikes.

Nice to see Leon Camier getting a break. He's a good rider with an unstoppable work ethic – something that makes him an appropriate substitute for Nicky Hayden in every sense. As Mr. Emmett notes, he's got a steep hill to climb. Here's hoping he makes the most of the opportunity.

I'm afraid I don't fancy Nicky's chances much. The medical experts I hang out with (yes, my social life is that sad) think he's done for the season. I expect they're underestimating the way these professional racers fight back from injury; I wouldn't be surprised to see him return before then end of the season but nowhere near 100% fitness. PRC is a "salvage" procedure and the recovery time is very long, even if the surgery is done arthroscopically (anyone know if that's the case?)

"I expect they're underestimating the way these professional racers fight back from injury" this is the reason why Nicky is havin such problems now. Bones need time to heal. Period. You can fight the pain, you can ride on painkillers, but you can't speed the healing process of the bone by much. Afterall they're human like us. they have better doctors, an they re in top shape, but our bones are well, the same. Nicky smashed the wrist and he never had the time to let it heal 100% and now all that bone crumbs died and had to be removed....gruesome imo.

I hope that las surgery went well, and Nicky will be OK, not just to race, but to live the rest of his life as a fully fit person, not a crippled ex sportsman, who gave his health for glory and cash... I wish him all the best. i like the man a lot.

But yes totally, agree.

When injuries get this complicated, there is never a proper recovery, and there will be no way back to anywhere near the front for Nicky. That's sad, he's a great character and good for the sport, but the time has surely come to stand down. And although WSBK could do with a proper star like this, surely the best option now is to call it a day.

Best of luck to Leon, he was showing a lot of promise a few years ago, hasn't lived up to it yet, maybe this is a good opportunity, be he needs a stable job in a proper team. I agree with David this will be uphill, huge difference between a superbike and MotoGP.

Hayden may recover from his injury, but I HIGHLY doubt the improved Honda will be able to even keep up with the Satellite Bikes, even with Marquez riding them. Whether Nicky will retire or not I do not know. But if the past is any indication of his mindset, he will push forward with the knowledge that he was once World Champion, and the feeling that he is just as fast as everyone else, (whether anyone else in paddock believes that or not).

Now what I can say for a fact is that most Motogp Fans do NOT feel he is any kind of threat, (speedwise and for sure Championship level), to any of the top racers even on a Factory bike. None of the teams feel he is at a Pedrosa, Marquez, Rossi, A. and P. Espargaro, Lorenzo level. You can tell by the contract negotiations and who is being pursued by who. The man is not respected at a World Champion in Motogp level, but he is respected for being someone who will not bad mouth your product or team when others will bitch and complain to the bank with the money you are paying them to race your stuff. That is the ONE area where Nicky has proven to be nothing but class even in the mist of Bull Excrement that seems to kill those with a weaker mentality.

I like Nicky, and like the post that Trident put a link to, (great link by the way an interesting read), injuries like his can kill careers. But Nicky is very similar to a lot of boxers I have watched age. Seems to me that he will try to race in Motogp until NO TEAMS will hire him. That includes the lowest level teams in Motogp. A few years ago he would never considered riding the bike he is on now. But like a lot of boxers that once pulled in millions, get old and do a UFC fight when they are fat, old, bloated, and permanently injured BEFORE they fight. Just to get a few thousand.

This is a LONG post from me, but I have liked Nicky Hayden since he was giving Mat Mladin fits. His family is friendly as can be, and he rides to the best of his abilities every time. There are many who have tons more ability and do not put anywhere near as much effort into their racing. Hope he gets better, do not want to see him retire, but would love to see him at least leave Motogp and get a good ride in WorldSBK where he could at least be a championship contender on a much better ride than he will ever get again in Motogp.

Shoulder injuries can be the most serious and debilitating for racers. Two others that come to mind are Carl Fogarty and Ben Spies. Both eventually retired due to their combined injuries. I hope all the best for Nicky, he's a genuine good guy.

I remember Nicky banging fairings with Dovi. That was last season wasn't it? The RCV100R is a mutt, and Nakamoto San had better hope to live a long life, because Mr. Honda is waiting to kick his ass for the way he has treated Nicky. I am looking forward to Nicky finishing up his MotoGP career and coming to the US to revitalize dirt track. The man can ride.

I'd say Honda have given Nicky plenty of chances. He won a WC. We're they wrong to back Dani, nope! Not at all. Results say all there is to.

Nicky has had a great career. I hope it continues. Some here act like honda should give a factory bike and because they don't they're evil for it.


Sorry for posting on another topic here but I have read on crash.net (please do not groan) that Avintia has issued a statement saying that it is in talks with Ducati, Yamaha and Kawasaki for next year's entry. Ducati has been touted around quite a bit, but Yamaha is new. Yamaha already has six bikes on the grid two each with the factory, Tech3 and Forward teams. Do they have the resources for another two engines? Avintia is also asking Kawasaki to give official backing to the team and does that mean that Kawasaki will give them more tarted up ZX10s or will Kawasaki revive its GP programme in some way? Sorry again for being OT.

. . . . . and now I don't feel so bad about having to miss Indianapolis this year. I've been following The Kid's career since the days when the family would invite me to sit with them watching Nicky race AMA at Daytona. And when he goes, I'm going to miss him. A lot.

On the other hand, I've been watching with the understanding that this is Nicky's last contract in MotoGP. Age catches up with you, and when Colin Edwards (a racer who hasn't accomplished nearly what Nicky has) is calling it quits, you have to know that your time is soon going to be over. I really hope he gets to ride out the second year of his contract . . . . completely for the selfish reason that I want to watch him race one more time. And I don't care where he finishes.

Afterwards? Screw World Superbike, I'm hoping he goes back to AMA Flat Track. There's still this matter of one remaining championship (the mile?, memory is a bit faint right now) to put him up there with the few other greats. I really think his road racing days are just about over, and while he'd contend in Superbike, I don't think he'd be able to out hustle the younger crowd for the championship. So I'd rather see him spending his remaining racing years where he can still rise to the top.

"and when Colin Edwards (a racer who hasn't accomplished nearly what Nicky has)"

Colin has won two WSB championships through pure speed and talent and skill, plus was involved in one of the best races ever (Imola 2002 vs Troy Baylis).

Nicky was MotoGP World Champion in 2006, but please don't "dis" Colin's achievements, as some will always think Nicky's championship was awarded through the misfortune of others that year! Nicky deserved his championship in 2006 (through consistency), just don't dismiss Edward's past, he was a great racer in his day!

A few years ago when Colin was younger and on a better bike he was the 4th place man. He never fought for the lead, but once the podium was sorted, Colin was the next one along.

As nice guy as NH seems to be 'The time has come the Walrus said '.
Consistant and hard worker, but he's never been an Alien has he ?
Let him retire in peace with hopefully a wing that still works enough to be no hinderence to the rest of his life.
He has great memories and his Title to smile about.

Camier , not convinced yet about this guy,we'll see huh ?

I think they mean that dude. As opposed to that other dude who got to spent years and years on the best bike of the field but only managed to win a couple of races with it, off which 2 were based on track-knowledge advantage , and 1 because the first dude lost that same victory in the last corner. If you leave those 3 out, how many more wins is that ?

Colin Edwards has never won any MotoGP race... but then neither has the majority of the MotoGP field.

I agree that this looks like a desperate measure and concerned that 69's wrist may be a career ender. This is how life goes in our sport, riders have a career trajectory with an arc. Little good from my view in pitting one against another unless we are making predictions on a particular race or season. When we were kids we would spend time sitting on a curb "who is a better superhero, batman or spiderman?" Keep in mind that they are out saving humanity while we drink beer.

Amazing that they 'borrow life' from tomorrow or the rest of their lives for today's race weekend. Thanks Nicky, you are one beautiful bad ass motorbike artist! Heal up well and speedy return.

So I hear Edwards is thinking about bowing out and calling it a career at Indy after the break. Interesting, no shame in that in my view. Feel done? Be done. Announced about the same time that Maverick Vinales is smiling for pictures with the Suzuki folks. Now THERE is where I enjoy a place our awareness, on the sun that is rising. "Hmm, so Vinales on a Suzuki or Melandri on a Aprilia for Qatar...? Or Beautista on the Fwd Yamaha?" Much cooler, because it is going to HAPPEN and isn't about judging "who was the better one" as much as discerning "who will get where and how."