It’s been rumored for months that Nicky Hayden will leave the Repsol Honda factory team to join the Marlboro Ducati factory team in 2009, and the 2006 MotoGP World Champion all but confirmed the move Thursday at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. “It’s no secret. Everybody knows where my next stop is going to be,” Hayden said when asked about his future plans during Dorna’s official pre-event press conference. “But officially we’re waiting to do it the right way, until the releases come out, because there’s teams and stuff. “I’m looking forward to it. I know it’s going to be a big change for me, and hopefully probably in the next, you know, announcement will be coming soon. But still, there’s five races to go this season. That’s a lot of racing. “I have had a long history with Honda, and I don’t have”¦sure, things here lately have kind of went, you know, kind of turned ugly with everything going on, all the drama. But still, we’ve had a lot of good races together, won championships in the AMA, and obviously the World Championship was the big one. Sure, every day wasn’t just a big holiday, but we had some good days and I’m really grateful for the opportunity they gave me. But I think it’s, you know, it’s time to move on, try something different. But we’ll worry about that later and for now just focus on this weekend and try to go out in a good way together.”
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