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Airwolf's picture
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Joined: Feb 29 2016 - 3:44pm
IDRA Merged with RotorSports

Looks like they joined forces - makes sense instead of having 2 different entities doing the same thing


With this merger, IDRA has vaulted to the top of drone racing event production and media content companies
Berkeley, CA and Los Angeles, CA (April 7, 2016) – Preeminent drone racing companies International Drone Racing Association (IDRA) and RotorSports today announced they are merging.
The two are joining forces to form the leading, global powerhouse capable of delivering the highest profile and most important races while at the same time producing media content that broadens the sport’s appeal.
The new company will use the IDRA name for all sanctioned drone events, while the RotorSports brand will be used for media content creation and delivery.
The consolidation of the leading players in the industry simplifies the playing field for advertisers, pilots, broadcasters, and others who want to participate in drone racing.
The IDRA’s flagship events will be the 2016 U.S. National Drone Racing Championships, 2016
World Drone Racing Championships, 2016 North American Cup and other Continental Cups, and the 2017 Drone World Cup. The U.S. National Drone Racing Championships will run as a summer festival in New York City from August 5 to 7. The World Drone Racing Championships will take place in Hawaii in October with over 35 participating countries, where the IDRA will officially award the first-ever crown of world’s fastest drone racer.
IDRA has vaulted to the top of drone organizations, most recently as Consulting Producer on the visually stunning World Drone Prix in Dubai. IDRA hit full throttle in 2015, running all of the races in the California Cup Series along with several individual races across the country.
RotorSports is the leader in drone competitions, hosting over 30 local and regional races in 2015, culminating in the inaugural U.S. National Drone Racing Championships, the groundbreaking event that transformed an increasingly popular hobby into a true sport. RotorSports is now positioned as the premier worldwide production and broadcast destination for all drone sports entertainment.
About IDRA
The International Drone Racing Association (IDRA) is the preeminent, global, drone racing & extreme rotor sports entertainment company. IDRA brings the world’s first-person-view drone racing community exciting, professionally organized, highly competitive competitions. IDRA is the organizer of the U.S. National Drone Racing Championships, the World Drone Racing Championships and the Drone World Cup series. With groundbreaking drone technology, racecourse design, and advancing safety standards, IDRA welcomes innovation and seeks to raise public awareness of the sport. IDRA is based in Berkeley and Los Angeles, CA.
About RotorSports
RotorSports is the premier “go to” worldwide destination for all drone sports entertainment. Through producing and broadcasting the highest quality content from a portfolio of premier races and drone entertainment, RotorSports brings the exciting world of drone racing to racing fans everywhere. Including such productions as the 2015 U.S. National Drone Racing Championships, RotorSports will be the exclusive content provider for all of IDRA’s drone races.

Cloudkiller's picture
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Joined: Jan 9 2016 - 11:48am
IDRA is becoming big. In

IDRA is becoming big. In general, seems like FPV racing is really starting to gain some traction. The merger was talked about on 60 minutes sports.
Now, IDRA has another win - they've scored a broadcast deal with ESPN! This is big!


Vertigo's picture
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Joined: Jan 2 2016 - 1:13pm
Yes, that was big news today!

Yes, that was big news today! Huge, in fact, for drone racing in general. It shows that FPV racing is ready for prime time, and that the sport has enough momentum behind it to boost it into the big leagues. However, I'm still taking a wait-and-see approach. While a lot of people are eager to hop on right now because of all the hype, time will tell whether the sport has staying power, or if it fizzes out after its first year or two.

Techcrunch posted this 2016 U S National Drone Racing Championships teaser with the article

And here's an excerpt from the story:

Under the “multi-year, international media distribution deal” IDRA signed with ESPN, the network would stream the 2016 Drone Racing Championships (national and world) on its streaming ESPN3 service, and the full event would be distilled to an hour-long special for airing on ESPN2 and potentially other channels.
“ESPN saw it moving in a big direction, and had some buy-in from the higher-ups,” said IDRA chairman Scot Refsland in a phone interview with TechCrunch. “We’ve got a professional announcer, live interviews, bios, all that stuff. ESPN was so interested in the space that they wanted to be our partner internationally as well.”

For now the content will be produced by Generate LA, with veteran sports TV producer David Gavant at the helm.

Regulatory issues pose both a problem and an opportunity. IDRA worked closely with the FAA, allowing them to use the whole operation as a case study for commercializing drones

“Currently, the legislation that we have… it doesn’t really support drone racing. It falls out of that grey area,” said Refsland — but the FAA has been accommodating. “They’re very strict on safety stuff, but they’re open to the interpretation of, ‘OK, this is on a closed course, it’s monitored by the AMA, the Academy of Model Aeronautics, the FAA, people from the state governor’s office.’ They understand the risk between risk and commercial viability.”

IDRA recently merged with another drone racing organization, RotorSports, in the interest of quicker growth and making sure that, of all the feet crammed in the door to this potentially lucrative new competitive landscape, theirs is the biggest.

Blackstar's picture
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Joined: Feb 11 2016 - 10:02am
Finally something actually

Finally something actually worth watching on ESPN3 :)

There's an official announcement on the IDRA website as well