Alex Marquez wins chaotic #StayAtHomeGP MotoGP Esports race

Honda's Alex Marquez eased to victory in MotoGP's inaugural #StayAtHome Grand Prix around a virtual Mugello circuit, while there were crashes for brother Marc, Maverick Vinales and Fabio Quartararo

Alex Marquez wins chaotic #StayAtHomeGP MotoGP Esports race

Reigning Moto2 world champion Alex was due to make his MotoGP debut at the start of the month in Qatar, before the race was cancelled due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

MotoGP's 2020 season is currently on hold until at least May's French Grand Prix - though the Le Mans race, and the following Italian GP at Mugello are set to be postponed imminently.

In lieu of real-world racing, MotoGP organised a six-lap Esports race for 10 of its riders at Mugello, with Marquez cruising to a seven-second victory after an early tussle with Pramac Ducati's Francesco Bagnaia.

A five-minute qualifying session preceded the race, with Petronas SRT's Quartararo beating Bagnaia by over two tenths on his virtual Yamaha to pole, while future works Yamaha team-mate Vinales completed the front row.

Marquez started the race from fourth position, but threw himself into a lead battle with Bagnaia on the opening lap.

Italian rider Bagnaia ran wide at the San Donato right-hander at the start of the second lap, and Marquez assumed the lead.

Bagnaia attempted to catch Marquez but a crash on the penultimate lap ended his victory chances and ensured Marquez won the race by 7.093s

Quartararo crashed at the first turn on the opening lap, with his errant bike wiping out his works Yamaha counterpart Vinales. Both dropped to the back of the field.

Vinales recovered to finish on the podium, while Quartararo had another incident just a couple of laps in.

A crash for reigning six-time MotoGP champion Marc Marquez at the halfway stage dropped him out of the podium places, and he was also passed by Quartararo for fourth with a daring dive up the inside of the Savelli left-hander.

Marquez took fifth place with just two days of practice on the game.

Suzuki riders Alex Rins and Joan Mir finished in sixth and seventh place respectively.

Tech3 KTM's Miguel Oliveira struggled to adapt to the virtual world, finishing eighth but ahead of his 2020 team-mate Iker Lecuona, who had multiple crashes.

Aleix Espargaro's limited time in the virtual world showed he finished 10th and last of the riders on the Aprilia.

MotoGP is set to announce more virtual races in the near future.

shares
comments
What to expect from Veloce and Motorsport Games' new Esports series
Previous article

What to expect from Veloce and Motorsport Games' new Esports series

Next article

Watch Veloce and Motorsport Games' Pro Series Esports race live now

Watch Veloce and Motorsport Games' Pro Series Esports race live now
Analysis: How an unlikely tie-up won sim racing's biggest race Plus

Analysis: How an unlikely tie-up won sim racing's biggest race

An unlikely partnership between LMP1 privateer Rebellion Racing and Williams Formula 1's successful sim racing team yielded victory in the inaugural 24 Hours of Le Mans Virtual. Here's how it triumphed in the biggest sim race ever staged

Esports
Jun 15, 2020
How poor driving standards ruined IndyCar's golden opportunity Plus

How poor driving standards ruined IndyCar's golden opportunity

The chaotic end to the virtual Indy 175 might be dismissed as "just a game," but the insulting actions of two IndyCar stars may have serious real-life consequences

Esports
May 3, 2020
Why Leclerc's Virtual GP annihilation deserves great credit Plus

Why Leclerc's Virtual GP annihilation deserves great credit

The introduction of Charles Leclerc, Alex Albon, George Russell and Antonio Giovinazzi to Formula 1's Virtual GP last weekend meant it was a step above the franchise's debut two weeks ago. But a dominant performance from Esports newcomer Leclerc stole the show

Esports
Apr 6, 2020
How the hidden side of being fast has been exposed Plus

How the hidden side of being fast has been exposed

'Natural talent' is one of the biggest misnomers going in motorsport, and that is being proven by the way real life racers aren't immediately getting on the pace with the sim racing experts in virtual contests. To change that, they are having to apply the same tools required to be quick in real life

Esports
Apr 2, 2020
Why F1’s pantomime Virtual GP is fun but unsustainable Plus

Why F1’s pantomime Virtual GP is fun but unsustainable

F1 Esports' inaugural Virtual Grand Prix last weekend provided brilliant entertainment to those tuning in to watch a mix of F1 drivers and celebrities battle on track, but was a missed opportunity for marketing its own Esports stars. A change of approach is needed if it is to successfully fill the void until the resumption of proper racing

Esports
Mar 24, 2020
The latest Red Bull exile to return in Esports Plus

The latest Red Bull exile to return in Esports

Since he was ejected from the programme at the end of 2006, the latest Red Bull junior driver brought back into the fold to race in Formula 1 - in a virtual sense for the inaugural Virtual GP - has had quite the career journey. From ADAC GT Masters and Porsche Supercup to Le Mans and the DTM, here's how a works pro got to relive a long-forgotten dream

Esports
Mar 24, 2020
Mercedes can be toppled in F1's other title race Plus

Mercedes can be toppled in F1's other title race

Mercedes has not only set new standards in Formula 1, but it's also created a benchmark in Esports. Now its rivals have scrambled to catch up, there's a chance the Brendon Leigh-fronted Mercedes can be stopped

Esports
Sep 10, 2019
Why World's Fastest Gamer is returning to real-world racing Plus

Why World's Fastest Gamer is returning to real-world racing

World's Fastest Gamer is a spiritual successor to the famous GT Academy. After a successful first year, it's returning to the Nissan programme's roots by targeting the real world of racing

Esports
Jul 31, 2019