Nicky Hayden dies (4th Update)
UPDATE It is with great sorrow that we must report former MotoGP champion Nicky Hayden died on Monday as the result of injuries he suffered after being struck by a car while riding a bicycle in Italy on May 17.
He was only 35 years old.
Hayden, from Owensboro, Ky., was struck by a car while training on his bicycle between Tavoleto and Riccione, south of the resort town of Rimini. He was taken by ambulance to a hospital near Rimini for treatment before being transferred to Maurizio Bufalini Hospital in Cesena, where he died of his injuries on Monday.
Known as the Kentucky Kid, Hayden won the 2005 MotoGP world championship with three victories that season. He competed in MotoGP from 2003-’15.
Hayden began racing in the World Superbike Championship in 2016, joining the Red Bull Honda World Superbike team. He scored his lone World Superbike victory last year at the Sepang Int’l Circuit.
Hayden remains in a "very critical" and unchanged condition in hospital in Italy, following his cycling accident on Wednesday.
The 35-year-old remained in intensive care on Sunday, with severe brain damage.
An update from the hospital confirmed "Nicky Hayden's condition remains very critical and the clinical picture is unchanged" as of today.
05/18/17 Nicky Hayden has suffered severe brain damage as a result of his bicycle accident, a medical statement issued on Thursday confirmed. The statement said the 35-year-old suffered serious polytrauma with subsequent serious cerebral damage in the accident and that his prognosis remains unknown.
Hayden's fiancee Jackie has been by his side so far, and she has been joined by his mother Rose and his brother Tommy, who had flown from the United States.
MotoGP legend and Hayden's friend Valentino Rossi had this to say about the American rider, who beat him to the MotoGP title in 2006.
"Very, very bad news from yesterday. I spoke straight away with a doctor, my friend, and he said that from the very first moment the situation was very difficult for Nicky.
"And now with a bit more time you start to understand. It's a great shame because Nicky is a great rider for sure, a great talent, a world champion and always at the top, but especially a very good guy.
"Coming from a good family of racers, from his father to his two brothers, always a good guy, always smiling, so for sure it's very bad. I think the situation is very bad but everybody, we hope for the best."
05/18/17 Hayden remains in intensive care as of Thursday morning with serious head and chest injuries.
05/17/17 Nicky Hayden has been taken to hospital following a cycling incident.
Hayden, who claimed the MotoGP world title back in 2006, was riding around the city of Rimini, on the Adriatic coast, when he struck a car.
RiminiToday.it, a local news source, posted several photographs of the aftermath, showing significant damage to a car's windscreen, and a specialist road bike.
Although there has been no official comment on Hayden's condition, the Superbike World Championship confirmed that there had been a collision.
"Nicky Hayden has been involved in a training incident which saw the American be hit by a car when he was out training on his bicycle," read a statement.
"The incident occurred along the Rimini coastline this afternoon, where he has been spending time following the Italian round at Imola.
"Following the incident, emergency services were called to the scene and Hayden was transported to the local hospital.
"Ambulances arrived and Hayden was taken directly to the hospital."
Hayden, 35, pipped Valentino Rossi to his sole MotoGP crown, and continued full-time until the end of the 2015 season, though made two outings for Honda last year.
He switched to the Superbike World Championship in 2016.