Draft Selection in Cannes: 21 new pilots strengthen the Drone Champions League teams

– Draft Selection as part of the International Games Festival in Cannes
– Seven teams for the coming season recruit a total of 21 new pilots
– More than 100,000 visitors on site from 22 to 24 February

Liechtenstein, 26.02.2019 – The Drone Champions League (DCL), the leading league for drone racing worldwide, has won 21 new pilots for its seven international teams. The talents were selected in a draft selection after qualifying for the final qualifiers via the DCL – The Game drone racing simulator. The event took place as part of the International Games Festival in the Palais des Festivals, which attracted more than 100,000 visitors, from 22 to 24 February in Cannes, France. The new season of the DCL starts with the DCL DRONE PRIX LAAX from 28th to 30th March 2019 in Switzerland.

“The level of the young pilots was absolutely amazing! This is also proven by the fact that originally only one draft round with seven picks – one per team – was planned. In the end, an incredible 21 pilots were selected from the 58 who came to Cannes. For example, the American QUAD FORCE ONE team alone has recruited six new pilots, and the CHINA DRAGONS have strengthened themselves with four new talents,” explains Herbert Weirather, CEO of DCL.

The Draft Selection in Cannes

In order to secure one of the coveted places in the professional teams of the DCL, ambitious young pilots first had to achieve a good place in the draft ranking of the computer game DCL – The Game. The greatest talents were invited to Cannes for a weekend, where the team managers had the opportunity to examine the skills of the pilots in direct duels with each other and to get to know them personally.

As the slowest team of the past season was allowed to select first, the fastest team last, a pro-competitive distribution of the new talents and thus an exciting 2019 season is guaranteed. In addition to the times and placings achieved, other important criteria in selecting the future professional pilots included their personality, their age, how long they have been active in drone racing and their technical understanding. The most recent pick was Swan Versmissen from France, twelve, whose services Team XBLADES (UK) secured in the second round of the draft selection.

Comments on the Draft Selection 2019

“Our event in Cannes was a complete success, the positive feedback of all participants overwhelming – from the participants of the draft selection over the team managers to the responsible persons and of course the spectators, who besides the exciting duels of the qualifiers also watched the drone shows with Brett Collis of Team XBLADES breathlessly. We are already looking forward to next year”, says Herbert Weirather.

“The top qualifiers in Cannes, measured against the challenges they had to master, showed some incredible performances. The dedication and willpower of the pilots were impressive and as team manager I am happy to have another resource for new talent. I am more than satisfied with my picks. Each of them will find his role in the team and we will give them the tools to be able to fly at the top in the future.” says Dominik Roch, Team Manager XBLADES.

All picks of the draft selection 2019

Round 1 Name Pilot Name Country
China Dragons Daniel Ayre FPRDAN Australia
Veloce Racing Ethan Kling EthanFPV USA
APEX Alfie Mitchell MomentFPV Great Britain
Drone Sports Leo Whitfield LeoFPV Great Britain
Raiden Racing Antonio Alejandro Gomez FlashFPV Spain
Quadforce One Kent Beal Thumbs USA
XBlades Alex Kubrak AK Ukraine
Round 2
China Dragons Felix Grubbe Zer0_Exception Germany
Veloce Racing Jonas Holzapfel Holzii_FPV Germany
APEX Marc Espuna Fontcuberta Singularity Spain
Raiden Racing Ian Hemphill Skyfall FPV USA
Quadforce One Hakon Ginstaad Puray Norway
XBlades Swan Versmissen Yayou France
Round 3
China Dragons Brandon Kurtz Astronautdigital USA
APEX Rand Brewer RandbrandFPV USA
Quadforce One David Schutta Flying Dave Germany
XBlades Markus Patas Jakala91 Germany
Round 4
China Dragons Jonathan Ficklin ImperiusFPV USA
Quadforce One Benoit Couturier Sartoriusfpv France
Round 5
Quadforce One Aurelien Duval Sarpooon France
Round 6
Quadforce One Javier Romero Garcia Mochuelo Spain