Ducati doesn’t want to cut axed MotoGP rider Nicky Hayden completely off its payroll in 2014 and will try and tempt the American to ride a Panigale in World Superbikes.
The 2006 world champion has not had his factory MotoGP contract renewed for a sixth season, but there is still serious interest in his services with a range of WSB and MotoGP teams monitoring his situation.
Ducati is keen on him switching to World Superbikes and Bologna factory boss Paolo Ciabatti told MCN: “We still have a very good relationship with Nicky and we would like to find a solution to keep him in the Ducati family. On the other side we felt it was time for a change after five years and this is why we decided not to exercise the option we had in his contract and to be fair to him we told him what the situation was so that he could look for other opportunities in MotoGP or consider the possibility to stay with us in World Superbikes.
He’s declared he would like to find a solution to stay in MotoGP and this point it is more on him to explore what opportunities he has and then we can see if there is something we can do to keep him with us.”
Hayden’s place at Ducati has been taken by British rider Cal Crutchlow and his first exclusive interview about his 2014 deal can be seen in this week’s MCN.