The “Kentucky Kid” will have his number retired from premier class Grand Prix racing at the Red Bull Grand Prix of the Americas in Austin, Texas.
Nicky Hayden passed away in 2017 after he was hit by a car in Italy while training on his bike on the Rimini coast.
Hayden rose to fame by working his way up to the premier class of MotoGP by 2003 when he was 21-years-old, teaming up with Valentino Rossi at Repsol Honda. Three years later, Hayden won the MotoGP Championship after a season-long battle with Rossi.
In 2016, Hayden switched to the Superbike World Championship where he took a race win in Malaysia.
“What a great honor it will be for Nicky’s #69 to be retired at Austin,” says Hayden’s father, Earl. “It is very fitting that it will be done at the US race as these races meant so much to Nicky and he looked forward to them so much every year. For myself in particular this will be very special event because the #69 was my number when I raced and I was very proud to see Nicky run the #69 on his bikes for his entire career. On behalf of my entire family I would like to say a special thanks to Dorna for honoring Nicky in this special way along with the many other gestures they have done to support us through the difficult times.”
Carmelo Ezpeleta, CEO of Dorna Sports, says Hayden was a fantastic example as a rider both on track and off. Ezpeleta goes on to say he hopes Hayden’s number will be synonymous with a legend and a champion.