Entering the closing stages of Sunday's Virtual Grand Prix of Spain and MotoGP champion Marc Marquez was holding a lonely fourth place, with a four-second gap to the rider in front and behind.

It had been “a pretty similar race to the Red Bull Ring, avoiding crashes and trying to take the podium".

But with the virtual rostrum once again out of reach, Marquez asked fifth place Danilo Petrucci which corner he was at, then slowed down enough to allow the Ducati rider to catch-up so they could battle over the final laps.

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From the smiles on their faces both were enjoying the contest, but it didn't end well for the Italian, who lunged for the inside of Marquez in the stadium section. The resulting clash left Petrucci on the ground.

"The last five laps were boring and Danilo was just 3-4 seconds behind me, so I waited for him and we had a nice battle," Marquez explained. "But unfortunately in the game it's so difficult to understand [how to pass] and he touched me and he crashed.

"Anyway we enjoyed it again and we hope it can help the Two Wheels for Life [charity] in their fight against the coronavirus. This is the most important thing. And congratulations to the guys that finished in front of me!"

Marquez may have dominated the real MotoGP action in recent years but - unlike team-mate and younger brother Alex - he is yet to claim a top three in the digital series.

"I feel myself getting better but still there are those three or four guys who maybe have another step over me," he said. "A bit more time on the PlayStation should help me to make another step."

Petrucci meanwhile seemed to suffer from an intermitted internet connection and had also perhaps been distracted by his dog, which was barking in the background as the race ended.

"It's my dog, sorry!" he smiled. "It's raining outside so I have to keep him in the house, but the problem is he is blind and cannot hear either!"