US MotoGP: Nicky Hayden shrugs off translation blunder

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Nicky Hayden has shrugged off reports that wrongly claimed he was heavily critical of Casey Stoner’s departure from Ducati to Honda for 2011.

An article that appeared in leading daily sports newspaper La Gazzetta dello Sport reported the American talking about Stoner’s decision to leave the Bologna factory after a media debrief in Germany last weekend.

The story was translated as saying Hayden had declared it ‘shameful’ and picked up by several news sources around the world.

What Hayden had actually said was it is a ‘shame’ that the 24-year-old Australian had been lured away to HRC next season.

The 2006 world champion tried to draw a line under the translation cock-up on the eve of his all-important home race in Laguna Seca.

The Kentucky rider said: “I really don’t have a whole lot to say on it. I didn’t do anything out of normal. I did the interview and they went back because they recorded it and was pretty clear what I said.

"Maybe the journalist is looking to sell a few magazines, but I wouldn’t make a comment like that. It’s none of my business.  Maybe it was translation. I was just saying that Casey had a good run at Ducat and it was a pity. But nothing lasts forever, so he moved on. That’s it and there’s not more to it than that.”

Hayden hadn’t seen Stoner to talk about the translation error in Laguna Seca but said he would probably clear the air with the Australian.

He added: “If I see him I might clear the air. But I don’t even think I need to. I think Casey knows me well enough and he knows I’m not going to go saying something like that.”

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Matthew Birt

By Matthew Birt