MotoGP NEWS Guru
Join Date: Sep 2005
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IMO, I will put all the blame on Hopkins. He was hot-headed all weekend. It was Hopkins that cut back in from behind Hayden. And Hopkins never likes Nicky being in front of him.
Looking at the helicopter shot, Nicky was being forced wide by Casey Stoner who made a textbook mistake at Laguna Seca: Go into T2 too hot to end up blowing it wide. Hayden stood it back up to avoid a possible crash with Stoner. There WAS a little opening between the two, when Stoner turned-in and Hayden felt it was safe to turn-in.
It IS racing, but that gap is too small to shoot at such an early stage of the race. Hopkins has got to have a better judgment that Hayden isn't going to see him and that's why it's an unwritten law that "it's the guy-in-front's line." You could see in that small window, Hopkins decided to twist the throttle and basically shot into Hayden correcting his line.
It is "racing", but it's too early in the race to be exploiting a small gap like that. The gain did not outweigh the risks. That being said, the brake adjuster was said to be damaged. For these bikes, the brake adjuster is on the left side so that adjustments can be made with the non-throttle hand.
That being said, when Hayden was in the pit, he was gesturing that the brake lever wasn't right, at which point, Benson began inspecting the master cylinder as well as, the brake fluid reservoir, pulling off the wristband that riders put on there. It could have been that the crash with Hopkins damaged the brake line connecting to the left front caliper.
Perhaps, it introduced some air or something that cause a progressive decrease in braking power and as Hayden attempted to compensate with the lever adjuster, it was such that they'd have to re-do the brakes. The brake adjuster isn't something that I'd think would lead to a DNF. But air in the brakes and loss of braking power... Yes, that's a DNF.
I wouldn't want to be coming down T1 through 5th gear on a GP bike only having to pop it down to 2nd on braking and find there're no brake power!
"Itīs not easier to ride, but I donīt need something easier, I need something faster." - Nicky Hayden #69
Next Track Days (NESBA): September 10 - Summit (Main)