On May 22, 2017, America lost a champion. After fighting severe injuries suffered in a bicycle versus car crash, Nicky Hayden succumbed to his injuries. Now, over a year after his passing, the world finally has a place to celebrate the racer’s life.
A Monument to the Kentucky Kid
Owensboro, Kentucky is known for many things: Agriculture, festivals and barbeque. However, one of its greatest claims to fame is the fact that it was the hometown of Nicky Hayden. Nicky grew up there with his brothers, mother and motorcycle racing father. All three Hayden brothers would later follow in their father’s footsteps becoming motorcycle racers, but Nicky was different. He kept winning races and eventually became the MotoGP world champion.
Despite his world fame, and all of his accolades, Nicky would always return home to Owensboro. So, it was only fitting that Owensboro became home to the memorial honoring one of its native sons.
Out on the front lawn of the Owensboro Convention Center, a bronze sculpture honoring the memory of Nicky Hayden has been erected. The statue depicts Hayden right after he won the 2006 MotoGP World Championship. He stands atop his Honda motorcycle, waving to the crowd while proudly brandishing the American flag.
The Mayor of Owensboro, Tom Watson, hosted the ceremony that dedicated the statue. He declared that June 9th would be “Nicky Hayden Day” referencing the racer’s number, 69. At that ceremony it was also announced that Hayden would be inducted into the Kentucky Motorsports Hall of Fame. Hayden’s family and fiancée were all in attendance, thanking the fans and sharing memories of their beloved Nicky.
An American still has yet to earn another MotoGP Championship since Nicky’s 2006 win. He has also been recognized as a MotoGP legend.
Brought to you by the motorcycling attorneys at Metier Law Firm—ride on, Kentucky Kid!