Motor Mouth: The coronavirus racing ban has been lifted — sort of
|driving.ca 27 Mar 2020 at 06:04|
Valentino Rossi will be back in action this Sunday, finally getting a chance to scrape elbows and bash fairings with Marc Marquez after what’s been an extended, coronavirus-induced layoff. Yes, the MotoGP season has finally started!
Don’t worry, we’re not about to lose Valentino Rossi — for those not following motorcycle racing, the Italian superstar is the biggest name in motorsport, two-wheel or four, worshipped even by the great Lewis Hamilton — to COVID-19. MotoGP is still #StayingAtHome.
But like so many motorheads, in the absence of real racing, the stars of Moto GP are jumping into the world of virtual racing. Along with Rossi, current MotoGP champion Marc Marquez and Rossi’s Yamaha teammate, Maverick Vinales, plus rising stars Fabio Quatararo and Alex Rins, will also be twisting digital throttles. Yes, MotoGP’s organizer, Dorna, has announced the first MotoGP race of the year will be virtual.
The “race” will be held — simulated from — at Italy’s Autodromo del Mugello, starting with a five-minute qualifying event — real qualifying takes a hectic 15 minutes, so this virtual simulation should be action packed — followed by six digital laps of Italy’s most famous racing circuit. at 3:00 p.m. (GMT +2) — that should be 9 a.m. EST, if my interpretation of savvytime.com is right — this Sunday, March 29. Best of all, this #StayAtHomeGP will be free, Dorna waiving all subscription fees until the start of real racing.