Nicky Hayden is confident that the new RC213V-RS will be competitive after enduring a difficult season on the underpowered RCV1000R in 2014.
The Drive M7 Aspar pilot, who was also sidelined for four races after having an operation to remove three bones from his wrist, believes the new bike and his rehabilitated wrist will allow him to close the gap to the Factory and Satellite bike next season.
The 2006 MotoGP champion, said: “I am sure we will be more competitive in 2015 than we were last season. There is still some development to be done with the electronics but I think we are on the right path. We had a great chassis last season but we were down on power. The new Honda RC213V-RS has quite a lot of horsepower, which will help us close the gap to the guys at the front. Until we have had more time to test it I can’t really give much more of an opinion, but the first impression suggests that we have a solid base to work from.
“This will be my second season with the DRIVE M7 Aspar Team and my main objective is to enjoy riding again. I don’t want to talk about last season anymore, it’s over. I am focused on getting back to full fitness, riding like I know I can and getting some good results to put 2014 behind us.”
Hayden is confident his wrist injury won’t hold him back in 2015.
He said: “I feel better every day. It wasn’t easy to get back on the bike after the type of surgery I went through. It was a serious operation, they had to remove three bones from my wrist. I was able to control the pain and ride again, even though I wasn’t back to my normal level, but gradually I recovered strength and feeling. It is good for me that the season is over because it’s a chance to continue the recovery. Since the end of the season I have been having injections of platelet-rich plasma. I have let my hand rest but I have also been doing a lot of work with the physic.”
Hayden’s best result in 2014 was an 8th place at the season opener in Qatar and he finished the standings in 16th place with 47 points.