Danilo Petrucci Races for Ducati for his First Virtual Moto GP
Following the spate of successes in the virtual GT racing arena, it’s the motorcycle’s turn at bat, and after two fruitful runs, Moto GP finally scheduled its first Virtual Grand Prix last May 3—the original date of the Spanish GP—in a digital rendering of the famed Jerez de la Frontera Circuit.
Aside from the premier class, Moto2 and Moto3 riders will also participate in the event as they are also set to compete with the MotoGP 20 videogame.
Racing for Ducati during this historic event was Italian champion Danilo Petrucci, who won the Italian Superstock 1000 Championship in 2011, and who currently competes in the MotoGP World Championship for the Ducati Corse team.
The rider from Umbria, Italy, took part in the Virtual Race 2 on the 12th April at the Austrian race track of the Red Bull Ring where he closed sixth after performing impressively in a race full of jaw-dropping twists and breathtaking turns.
Moto GP hyped up the event by promising to televise the race to broadcasters around the world. The event was also viewable on MotoGP and MotoGP eSport websites, as well as their social media pages on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and YouTube.
The Virtual MotoGP race included 11 riders racing on a 13-lap distance, which is equivalent to half of the real Grand Prix race distance.
Prior to the race, Petrucci gave the following statement:
“I am quite curious to see how this second Virtual Race will go for me. For the Virtual Grand Prix, we will race at Jerez, where we should have had to take part in the real Grand Prix this weekend. Compared to the Virtual Race 2, this time we will be playing with the new MotoGP 20 videogame. I am already training a bit with it these days, and it is truly realistic! In general, I am not a great videogame player, and maybe, this will be a disadvantage for me against the youngest riders, but I am happy to be able to participate and entertain all the fans that are waiting to see us on track soon.”
Unfortunately, when the dust settled, neither Ducati nor Petrucci hoisted the champion trophy, as that honor went to Yamaha's Maverick Vinales.
Petronas SRT rider Fabio Quartararo took his second virtual pole of the year. Francesco Bagnaia also racing for Ducati, completed the podium.