Nicky Hayden, riding for the Repsol Honda team, took his first ever MotoGP win after a perfect ride at Laguna Seca in the US Grand Prix on Sunday.

Nicky Hayden, riding for the Repsol Honda team, took his first ever MotoGP win after a perfect ride at Laguna Seca in the US Grand Prix on Sunday.

The local challenger successfully beat off the attack of Yamaha team-mates Colin Edwards and Valentino Rossi. Hayden was fastest in the free practice and warm-up sessions, and used his knowledge of the highly technical circuit to clinch the win in front of a jubilant crowd.

With Yamaha's 50th anniversary proceedings in full swing, Rossi was under pressure to produce some spectacular racing, and ultimately, a win. It is perhaps fitting that an American was first past the chequered flag in the first MotoGP race in the US since 1994.

After a one-minute silence to honour those affected by the London bombing attacks, Hayden immediately sprang into action and led the 21-rider field through the circuit with Troy Bayliss, Rossi, John Hopkins, Carlos Checa, Sete Gibernau, Colin Edwards and Alex Barros in hot pursuit.

Shortly afterwards, Barros' hopes of another win this season were dashed when Marco Melandri clipped his rear tyre, sending both riders out of the race.

Rossi was riding a comfortable second for most of the race, while behind him Gibernau, Biaggi and Edwards battled it out for third place. Edwards broke the deadlock, and with pace in reserve, soon pulled clear of the pack as he gained on his team-mate, Rossi.

But as Hayden upped the pace with laps to go, Edwards too dug in, matching the race leader to close in on Rossi. In one slick move, the Laguna Seca veteran dove inside of Rossi on the entrance to the corkscrew to take second place. But after what promised to be a spirited attack on the lead rider, massive tyre wear became apparent on Edwards' machine, halting any serious challenge.

Kentucky native Hayden went on to cross the line ahead of the M1s of Edwards and Rossi. With his most-recent finish, Rossi has extended his championship title lead to 79 points with nine races to go this season.

Behind the top three, Biaggi finished fourth and Gibernau fifth.

Bayliss, Tamada, Hopkins and Nakano were involved in one of the tightest battles of the race. Bayliss prevailed to finish sixth, while Tamada bravely dove inside of Hopkins on turn one for seventh position, leaving Nakano in ninth.

Loris Capirossi was the only factory Ducati rider to finish (in tenth position) after his team-mate, Carlos Checa crashed out on lap 9.

Original article from Car