Motogp 2020 season was supposed to start on 8 th March, but due to the COVID-19 Pandemic, and the current lockdown scenario, no Motogp races are held across the world. Motogp have come up with a brilliant way to counter this by hosting the first ever ‘Stay at home GP’. #Stayathomegp is held on Sundays where we can see 10 motogp riders participating in a Virtual Race playing on their PlayStation console from their respective homes. MotoGp hosts this virtual GP live on their YouTube channel.
In a world first, Honda's Álex Márquez won the inaugural, virtual #StayAtHome MotoGP™ race ahead of Pramac Racing Ducati rider Francesco Bagnaia and Yamaha's Maverick Viñales, after a lap one crash-fest saw real world team-mates Fabio Quartararo and Viñales hit the dirt.
For the first time ever, nine riders from seven MotoGP™ teams, with 165 Grand Prix wins between them, went head-to-head on the MotoGP™19 video game from the comfort of their own homes.
"Fantastic. What a result," commented race winner Alex Márquez. "It was a really fun event with all of the other riders and I'm really pleased to win my first race. I found a good setting with the RC213V, which let me race how I wanted to and I knew I had a few different lines for when I needed. Even at just six laps you really needed to stay focused, because with one small mistake it can go very wrong. I enjoyed it a lot and I hope everyone who watched also had a good time."
Virtual #StayAtHome MotoGP™ results
- Alex Márquez (ESP) 10m 38.643s
- Francesco Bagnaia (ITA) +7.093s
- Maverick Viñales (ESP) +8.496s
- Fabio Quartararo (FRA) +9.968s
- Marc Márquez (ESP) +14.416s
- Álex Rins (ESP) +19.548s
- Joan Mir (ESP) +23.247s
- Aleix Espargaró (ESP) +29.702s
- Iker Lecuona (ESP) DNF
The top five finishers in Virtual Race 1 returned for VR2, with five new riders added to the mix, including Valentino Rossi and Danilo Petrucci. However, the top five riders in VR1 also took the top five spots in VR2, though the order was shaken up.
The top five riders—Bagnaia, Viñales, the Márquez brothers, and Fabio Quartararo, were inarguably the cream of the field. The top five qualified within 0.404 seconds of each other, with Michele Pirro leading the bottom-half in qualifying, but over two seconds off Bagnaia’s pace. In the race, the top four riders all had best laps in the 1:21s, with Quartararo clicking in a 1:22.351 best lap. The rest of the field has best-laps of 1:23 or more.
With a runner-up finish in VR1 and a win in VR2, Bagnaia takes the series lead by four points over Alex Márquez, who has a win and a P3 finish. Viñales, with P2 and P3 finishes, has a solid grasp on P3 in the standings, with Quartararo and Marc Márquez tied in P4 with 24 points in two races.
“I had to concentrate so hard,” said Bagnaia admitted. “When Maverick overtook me, he was setting a really good pace. When he crashed and I took the lead again I started to make a lot of mistakes. It was difficult to manage the grip, but I tried to stay in front of him. On the last lap when he overtook me, I gave it everything, also touching the grass a little, but the battle was so much fun.”
2020 MotoGP Virtual Race 2 Results
- Pecco Bagnaia, Pramac Racing; 13:47.091
- Maverick Viñales, Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP; +0.074
- Alex Márquez, Repsol Honda Team; +9.762
- Marc Márquez, Repsol Honda Team; +12.572
- Fabio Quartararo, Petronas Yamaha SRT; +35.418Non-classified
- Danilo Petrucci, Ducati Team
- Valentino Rossi, Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP
- Takaaki Nakagami, LCR Honda Idemitsu
- Tito Rabat, Real Avintia Racing
- Michele Pirro, Ducati Team
MotoGP Virtual Race Series Standings (after two rounds)
- Pecco Bagnaia, Pramac Racing Ducati, 45 points (1 win)
- Alex Márquez, Repsol Honda Team, 41 (1 win)
- Maverick Viñales, Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP, 36
- Marc Márquez, Repsol Honda Team, 24
- Fabio Quartararo, Petronas Yamaha SRT, 24
- Alex Rins, Team Suzuki Ecstar, 10
- Joan Mir, Team Suzuki Ecstar, 9
- Miguel Oliveira, Red Bull KTM Tech 3, 8
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