Luck is not on the side of Nicky Hayden. After heading to Mugello for two extra days of testing aboard the GP12, to compensate for the testing he missed due to injury early in the year, the weather severely limited Hayden's time on the bike. While conditions were passable on Wednesday, high winds made riding almost impossible on Thursday, forcing Ducati to call an early halt to the test. Hayden now heads to Jerez for the Spanish Grand Prix, due to be held on April 29th.
Below is the official press release from Ducati:
Rain affects Ducati test at Mugello
Ducati’s test at Mugello was affected by the weather, forcing Nicky Hayden and official test rider Franco Battaini to spend more time in the garage than they did on the track. The conditions alternated between sunny skies and heavy precipitation for all three days, but both riders nonetheless did their best to take advantage of the nicer moments by trying both dry and wet settings.
“We came here looking to make up time lost due to my missing the Valencia test and having limited time at the Malaysia and Jerez tests, but it was pretty much a wash,” Hayden said. “It’s a shame because Ducati gave me the opportunity to come and had a race-spec GP12 here, along with my whole team. Yesterday we made two exits with slicks and also did a bit of riding in the wet, but today the conditions were wet but also cold and windy, completely unmanageable. With two back-to-back races coming up, there wasn’t much to be gained by risking testing in the wet. I’ve learned during my career that you can’t control the weather, so there’s no need to complain. We’ll just look forward to the race at Jerez.”
“We had very unstable conditions at Mugello,” said Ducati Corse General Manager Filippo Preziosi. “We tried to optimize our work by doing some setup tests with Nicky, including some rain settings, given that he rode so little during the first two winter tests. With Franco, particularly on the relatively nice first day, we started doing some tests that will be useful for preparing updates for Vale and Nicky to try during the post-race test in Estoril. I really hope we get sunny weather in Portugal!”