Hayden's number 69 officially retired by MotoGP

MotoGP held a ceremony to honour the late Nicky Hayden and officially retire his number 69 in Austin on Friday.

Nicky Hayden, with the number 69.   -  Getty Images

Nicky Hayden's number 69 was officially retired by MotoGP during an emotional ceremony at the Grand Prix of the Americas on Friday.

The 2006 MotoGP world champion, nicknamed 'The Kentucky Kid', tragically died at the age of 35 as a result of being hit by a car while training on a bicycle in Italy in May 2017.

Hayden's family and friends were present at the Circuit of the Americas media centre, along with International Motorcycling Federation president Jorge Viegas and Carmelo Ezpeleta, the CEO of MotoGP’s commercial and television rights holders Dorna.

"Thanks to everyone that has joined us here. Nicky loved MotoGP for a reason, because there's a lot of good people there, starting at the top," Hayden's brother Tommy said.

"Nicky had a lot of success on the track, but I think we all agree he made just as big an impact off the track and everyone's lives - whether friends, family or fans. That's something we are most proud of.

"The 69 is a special number in my family. My Dad raced with that number, then other family members, my sister, my brother Roger, myself, in our childhood years. 

"Nicky carried the number through his career, so it has a lot of meaning and to have it retired from MotoGP, the pinnacle of the sport, means a lot to us.

"Thanks to everyone for helping to keep Nicky's legacy alive."

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