XBlades claim fifth straight Drone Champions League title


British powerhouse clinches the official World Championship of professional drone racing teams at the McDonald’s Virtual Drone Grand Prix Lake Zurich, Switzerland.

It came down to the last day of the 2020 campaign, but Great Britain’s XBlades Racing out-flew their toughest season rivals to celebrate a five-title streak that will go down in drone racing history. Denmark’s APEX Racing took the runner-up spot for the second year in a row, with the USA’s Quad Force One just 20 points behind in third overall. Here is all you need to know. 

  • Coming into the season’s final Drone Grand Prix, it was clear that XBlades, APEX and Quad Force One would be the teams on the World Championship podium, but the order was up for grabs. XBlades served notice that they did not intend to let their 120-point lead slip away when they captured the best spots in the racing brackets by topping both Qualifying sessions.
  • In Saturday’s Semi-Finals, XBlades easily swatted away Quad Force One,15:1. But their win over APEX in the Grand Final was hard fought. XBlades pilot Ashton Gamble said: “That was probably one of the hardest races ever. It was so close! When we knew we won, we lost our voices from screaming.” Final race result: XBlades 1st, APEX 2nd, Raiden Racing (JPN) 3rd.
  • On Sunday, it was APEX Racing’s turn to face the British defenders in the Semis, and when XBlades star MinChan Kim almost immediately broke a track record, the writing was on the wall, with the Danes losing 16-1. The show of dominance only continued in the Grand Final, as the British team rolled over Quad Force One 15:3 despite a valiant effort from the Americans. Final race result: XBlades 1st, Quad Force One 2nd, Raiden Racing 3rd.
  • The pilots flying for the XBlades across the season were MinChan Kim, Ashton Gamble, Killian Rousseau, Alex Zamora, Luke Bannister and Owen Knight. Kim, who was a star acquisition for XBlades this year after previously racing for Korea, captured the 2020 Pilot of the Year award by just one point over Gamble.
  • After four previous campaigns flying real drones for crowds in spectacular global locations, DCL’s first-ever virtual World Championship raised the stakes this year, putting the emphasis squarely on pilot skill without the factor of drone technology. In taking the 2020 title, XBlades have cemented their legacy as all-around legends.
  • 2020 marked an impressive turnaround for 2018 runners-up Quad Force One, who were plagued by technical issues last season, as well as for Japan’s Raiden Racing, who finished a strong fourth in the 2020 World Championship after failing to score a single point in 2019.
  • DCL brings together the planet’s best drone pilots on eight international teams, and is the only professional drone racing series broadcast live worldwide on TV and online. A total 57 pilots of 21 nationalities competed across the four Drone Grand Prix events of 2020, including the McDonald’s Wildcard Team that represented Switzerland and Liechtenstein at Lake Zurich. Anyone can battle for a place in the DCL Draft Selection by playing DCL – The Game.
  • The McDonald’s Virtual Drone Grand Prix Lake Zurich, Switzerland featured four creative and exceptionally challenging tracks. From a plunge down Rapperswil Castle to fiendish gates over the water, all of the Swiss tracks will be available to play in DCL – The Game. Stay tuned to DCL social channels for release dates.

Watch for the Rookie of the Year announcement, the 2021 calendar and DCL updates all year long at www.dcl.aero and DCL social channels.

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