A career in motorsport was almost inevitable for Nicky Hayden - his father raced dirt bikes and both of his brother are also pro motorcycle riders.
He started so young that family members had to hold his machine upright at the start line because his feet didn't touch the ground.
But the potential was there for all to see and after a successful domestic career in the US, MotoGP came a-calling.
His first season, in 2003, was a triumph. He finished fifth in the standings and was named Rookie of the Year.
Three years later, he would be crowned world champion after a thrilling season that was only decided at the last race. His arch-rival, Valentino Rossi, led the standings by eight points but crashed early in the race. Hayden held his nerve to finish third and secure his first – and to date only – world title.
Highs and lows have followed, but he remains one of MotoGP's best.
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