Tags: drone racing league | espn | deal | broadcast

Drone Racing League, ESPN Reach Deal to Televise the Sport

The Drone Racing League reached a deal with ESPN to broadcast a 10-episode season. (YouTube)

By    |   Wednesday, 14 Sep 2016 02:45 PM

Drone racing is ESPN’s newest televised sport, after the Drone Racing League announced Wednesday that it has signed deals to broadcast a 10-episode season on ESPN and ESPN2, including European stations Sky Sports Mix and 7Sports.

“Coverage of DRL lets us merge storytelling, technology and competition into compelling weekly content that we believe will appeal to a growing audience,” said Matthew Volk, ESPN’s director of programming and acquisitions, according to ESPN.

Coverage of the Drone Racing League will begin on Oct. 23 on ESPN2 and will broadcast episodes on Thursday and Saturday nights with ESPN showing the final episodes, including the two-hour championship in late November, The New York Times reported.

The technology to race drones and film them in competition is only a few years old.

“It’s an exciting, real-life experience mixed with video game-like dynamics,” Nicholas Horbaczewski, chief executive and founder of the league, told the Times. “These races are short sprints. It has that thrill of a 100-meter dash or horse racing.”

The races are prerecorded, which means viewers will see an edited mix of the footage.

An introduction to drone racing will air on ESPN2 on Thursday at 11 p.m.

As for the league’s overseas coverage, Sky is investing $1 million into this new endeavor, and will also begin broadcasting the drone racing competitions in October, according to The Guardian.

“It’s like a cross between Robot Wars and Red Bull air racing,” a Sky spokesman told The Guardian. “It’s not that big in the U.K. yet but it is catching on. This is a good opportunity for us to get involved at an early stage.”

The Drone Racing League has become a trending topic on Twitter since its announcement.

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Drone racing is ESPN's newest televised sport, after the Drone Racing League announced Wednesday that it has signed deals to broadcast a 10-episode season on ESPN and ESPN2, including European stations Sky Sports Mix and 7Sports.
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Wednesday, 14 Sep 2016 02:45 PM
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