It appears that Roger Lee Hayden, younger brother of former MotoGP world Champion Nicky, has signed with Team Pedercini to contest the 2010 WSBK Championship. Hayden, the 2007 AMA 600 Supersport champion, had been rendered jobless recently when Kawasaki announced that they would not support a team in American roadracing. Although Hayden has been one of the best 600 class racers in the US throughout his career, coming to terms with the big bikes has been a struggle for him. In his three years on the Factory Kawasaki Superbike, two were shortened by serious crash related injuries, although, to be fair, the 2008 crash at Barber Motorsports Park that resulted in an amputated finger was not Hayden's fault.
The Kawasaki ZX-10 platform has been notable for it's lack of competitiveness in recent years but whether the dearth of results could be ascribed to the hardware or rider talent is a point for argument. With the shut-down of their MotoGP squad and several of their factory supported national teams, Kawasaki is supposedly throwing the bulk of their resources at WSBK. Part of that ramped-up effort is apparently the addition of new, younger faces in the pit box. Hopefully some of that increased development promised Chris Vermeulen when he signed with the factory-backed Paul Bird team will trickle down to Pedercini.