After his seat in the IODA Racing team fell through due to a lack of funds, Leon Camier is to race in MotoGP in 2014 after all. The Englishman is to replace Nicky Hayden on the Drive M7 Aspar Honda RCV1000R for both the Indianapolis and Brno rounds of MotoGP.
Hayden had surgery last week to remove a row of bones in his right hand, including the scaphoid he injured in a crash in 2011. On Tuesday, Hayden was examined for the first time after surgery, and although his recovery is going well, he will require an extended period of rehabilitation before he is ready to return to race. As a result, Hayden will be forced to skip both the Indianapolis and Brno rounds of MotoGP, in the hope of returning to action at Silverstone at the end of August.
In the meantime, Camier is to ride his production RCV1000R for the two rounds, making his debut in the premier class at last. The Englishman will face an uphill task at Indianapolis, acclimatizing to the Bridgestone tires at a notoriously difficult circuit, and one which he has never ridden. A week later, Camier will face a slightly easier challenge, racing at Brno which he knows from his time in World Superbikes.
Since learning that the IODA Racing team did not have the funds to field a second Aprilia RSV4 for Camier, the Englishman has been filling in as a replacement rider in World Superbikes. He took the seat of Sylvain Barrier on the BMW S1000RR EVO bike, and replaced the injured Claudio Corti on the MV Agusta F4RR. He was also on standby to replace Nicky Hayden earlier in the year, after Hayden suffered a flare up of the wrist injury, but Hayden continued to race. Camier will now get his chance to ride Hayden's bike, since the American decided to opt for surgery to fix the problem.
Below is the press release from the Drive M7 Aspar team:
Nicky Hayden recovery process from wrist operation is favourable
Nearly a week after surgery, Drive M7 Aspar rider underwent his first examination on Tuesday and received positive news
After undergoing surgery on his right wrist at the Oasis Center of San Diego last Wednesday, and after resting for several days, DRIVE M7 Aspar rider Nicky Hayden was examined on Tuesday for the first time since the operation. According to Dr. James Chao, the physician in charge of the surgery, the procedure was a success and his recovery is on track. The American rider will gradually regain movement in his wrist.
Hayden has had his wrist immobilised and has been resting since Wednesday of last week, but this Tuesday he underwent his first review. During the examination he was injected with platelet-rich plasma to help regenerate bone structure and also received magnetic therapy to accelerate the healing of the operated area. The need for adequate recovery time requires Hayden to miss the MotoGP rounds at Indianapolis and the Czech Republic.
A fitness plan has been devised for Hayden to keep in shape during his layoff, so that when he returns to action he will be at 100%. The DRIVE M7 Aspar team will field Superbike rider Leon Camier for the Indianapolis and Czech Republic rounds that follow the summer break, standing in for Hayden.
Nicky Hayden: "Although undergoing surgery is not usually a positive thing -not least because you lose a lot of time- I'm happy with how the operation went last week. Sometimes it is difficult, but we know that injuries are part of our sport and we must learn to manage them. Everyone knows that my wrist has been causing me problems, especially at recent races. I underwent an operation in June, which helped me to complete the first half of the season, but the truth is I've been riding with a lot of discomfort, and have been unable to perform at my best. So, together with the team, we decided to make an important decision and undergo a larger operation to treat an injury that comes from three years ago -when I broke my scaphoid and did not heal well. According to Dr. Chao the operation was a success and I am very happy, and focusing on my recovery. My right wrist still needs to be immobilised for another week. Then I will begin rehabilitation therapy, and I'll slowly recover mobility. I want to thank the team, sponsors and fans for all the support they are giving me at this time. In the first examination, a week after surgery, I received an injection of platelet-rich plasma to help heal bones. According to the doctor my recovery is on course, which is very positive. It takes patience, but if I have made the decision to have surgery it is to get back to my best. I made the decision thinking about being healthy for the end of the season and already thinking about next year."