Motorcycle Racing News MotoGP MotoGP Virtual Race 2 Preview (with Rider Interviews)

MotoGP Virtual Race 2 Preview (with Rider Interviews)

MotoGP Virtual Race 2 is coming on Easter Sunday, and the returning racers and new competitors are talking about their preparations and expectations for the race. After a successful inaugural round at Mugello Circuit in Italy that has drawn three million viewers, the #StayAtHomeGP moves to Austria’s Red Bull Ring.

MotoGP Virtual Race 2 Preview - Valentino Rossi

Coverage of MotoGP Virtual Race 2 begins at 9 a.m. EDT on Sunday. The day starts with a five-minute qualifying session, followed by a 10-lap race. It is available for free on a wide variety of streaming platforms, including MotoGP YouTube and Facebook, MotoGP eSport YouTube and Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, as well as at MotoGP.com. Part of the fun of the event is that viewers can watch the riders and their reactions during the race.

Alex Márquez comes into the Red Bull Ring round with a target on his back, as he won the opening round. He is understandably trying to tamp down expectations. “It will be nice to put on another show,” Alex Márquez said, “but I think lots of the others will have been training harder! I’ve been practicing again at the Red Bull Ring. It’s quite different to Mugello, with a lot of heavy braking. In Mugello, we saw a lot of people were on the limit, so I think Turn 1 of the race could be very exciting! It will be interesting to see how everyone has improved, but I still think Pecco [Bagnaia] and Fabio [Quartararo] will be a big challenge.”

MotoGP Virtual Race 2 Preview - Alex Marquez
Alex Márquez

Fabio Quartararo is looking for redemption at Red Bull Ring. He started on the pole, but failed to finish on the podium. “I’m fast on the PlayStation,” Quartararo said, “but if you look at the standings compared to the top guys there, I’m faster in reality! But it’s true that it’s always good to have fun on the MotoGP videogame, and I’m really lucky to have one at home during these tough moments.”

If you watched the MotoGP eSport Championship last year, you heard Danilo Petrucci doing color commentary. Petrucci is definitely into the MotoGP19 game, and he sounds like he is serious about his debut in the Virtual Race series.

MotoGP Virtual Race 2 Preview - Danilo Petrucci
Danilo Petrucci

“Taking part in the Virtual Race is not like racing on a real racetrack,” Petrucci explains, “but in this particular moment, it is nice to have such an alternative to being able to challenge my rivals. It is a different way to keep our competitive spirits high. The game is so realistic, and I am practicing a bit these days. I even asked for some piece of advice to Andrea Saveri, our Ducati Corse eSport rider, and reigning ‘virtual’ MotoGP World Champion. I am sure it will be extremely entertaining, and I can’t wait to know how it will turn out.”

Petrucci’s teammate, Ducati Team test rider Michele Pirro, is an experienced motorcycle rider. However, he comes into the series as an inexperienced virtual racer. “I would have never expected that my first 2020 MotoGP race is going to be virtual,” Pirro said. “I’ve never been a big videogame player, but I will try hard to be able to get a good result on Sunday. I will try to live it as a real competition, even if, for sure, it will be a strange situation for me. But at the same time, it will be fun! I can’t wait for Sunday to arrive to head back out on track ‘virtually’ and celebrate Easter with all our fans, sponsors, and technical staff. I am sure they will be watching the race from home!”

Marc Marquez - MotoGP Champion
Marc Márquez

 

Reigning MotoGP World Champion Marc Márquez is back for another shot at a Virtual Race win. He ran in a podium position for most of Virtual Race 1, but a late crash left him in P5 overall. “Well, since the last race, I have stepped up my training a bit more,” Marc Márquez reveals. “When you’re a racer, you want to win no matter what you are doing, but most importantly, this is for the fans. It’s nice to have something else to focus on alongside physical training. Everyone seemed to really enjoy watching it last time, so it should be another funny race. Let’s see what happens at the Red Bull Ring!”

2020 MotoGP Virtual Race 2 Entry List

  • Pecco Bagnaia, Pramac Racing
  • Alex Márquez, Repsol Honda Team
  • Marc Márquez, Repsol Honda Team
  • Takaaki Nakagami, LCR Honda Idemitsu
  • Danilo Petrucci, Ducati Team
  • Michele Pirro, Ducati Team
  • Fabio Quartararo, Petronas Yamaha SRT
  • Tito Rabat, Real Avintia Racing
  • Valentino Rossi, Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP
  • Maverick Viñales, Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP

2020 MotoGP Virtual Race Series Standings

  1. Alex Márquez, Repsol Honda Team, 25 points
  2. Pecco Bagnaia, Pramac Racing Ducati, 20
  3. Maverick Viñales, Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP, 16
  4. Fabio Quartararo, Petronas Yamaha SRT, 13
  5. Marc Márquez, Repsol Honda Team, 11
  6. Alex Rins, Team Suzuki Ecstar, 10
  7. Joan Mir, Team Suzuki Ecstar, 9
  8. Miguel Oliveira, Red Bull KTM Tech 3, 8
  9. Iker Lecuona, Red Bull KTM Tech 3, 0
  10. Aleix Espargaró: Aprilia Racing Team Gresini, 0

Don Williams
Don Williamshttp://www.ultimatemotorcycling.com
With 45 years of riding experience, Don Williams is a fan of all kinds of motorcycles. He enjoys sport bikes, cruisers, dirt bikes, touring bikes, adventure bikes, dual sport bikes, and rideable customs. Ask Don what his favorite bike is and he will tell you, "Whatever bike I'm on."

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