This report was provided by Travis Ames, A Team UVify Pilot.
Two weeks ago, IDRA held their final race at Southpoint Casino and Hotel in Las Vegas. Thirty of the top pilots in the league travelled from around the world to compete for a purse prize of $50,000 and a chance to be crowned the top pilot of IDRA. The event was held in a conference room with low hanging gates, and netting protecting the spectators and pilots. This track proved to be technical in some spots, yet fast paced in others. To master the track, pilots had to be consistent and smooth, but also a little reckless.
The race was single elimination, which meant pilots were constantly crashing trying to stay ahead of each other and not get eliminated. The crowd was in awe with anticipation waiting for each crash. This type of race is hard on the nerves, especially when watching pilots give it everything they have, to ensure they won’t be eliminated. It was heart-wrenching at some points, but if you were able to get through 3 rounds of that then you would find yourself in the final race with some of the top pilots in the world.
I made it to the final race. “One slip up and you will be eliminated in the blink of an eye” and “don’t crash” were some of the things running through my mind as we put our goggles on and grabbed our radios for one last push to see who would be crowned the champ.
The final race began as four drones lifted off at full throttle trying to take and keep the lead. It was anyone’s race to win or lose and nobody knew where the cards would fall. But the race ended as quickly as it began. Andy Marachilian had finished three laps in under one minute, taking the win. Mac Poschwald took second and I finished third. The crowd was excited after the race as we were being crowned the top pilots of the year, but for us, it was just nice to know that the race was over, and we could finally relax and process everything that had just happened. I can’t wait until the next race.
Congrats and a huge thanks to everyone who participated and helped organize these events. If it wasn’t for all of these amazing people that do this for the love of the sport, there wouldn’t be drone racing.