By Aaron Waldron
Every once in a while, the story of a particular RC car will catch on in mainstream media. Typically it's for some sort of accomplishment that will attract super geeks, like Nic Case's 200 mph record run or the Traxxas XO-1 RTR that will break the century mark. Sometimes you'll see RC cars make cameo appearances in TV commercials (think Team Associated and Lexus) or involved with some sort of athlete (Ken Block replicas anyone?).
Yesterday's Wall Street Journal feature on Adam Drake and the life of racing RC cars as a professional was really the first time that non-RC media focused on the "who," rather than the "what." And rather than try to impress people with scale-disproportionate performance numbers, A.J. Baime painted an outsider's perspective on the human element of the highest level of our wonderful hobby.
I reached out to Adam after the article to find out more about what happened leading up to the story.
Aaron Waldron: How did they approach you about doing the story?
Adam Drake: I was approached by a writer for the Wall Street Journal named AJ Baime. AJ writes the MYRIDE article for the WSJ and thought it would be interesting to incorporate my passion for R/C Cars into the article. At first, I don't think the others from the WSJ were into the idea, but eventually they came around and got excited about the article. The more they learned about R/C cars, the more interest they had for them and decided to also send out a videographer.
AW: What was your first reaction?
AD: When I was first contacted by AJ, I was surprised and thought it may be someone playing a joke on me. I did a little research and pursued the opportunity.
AW: Do you know how they were referred to you?
AD: After the article went live yesterday, I was contacted by Tom Soares and he told me he replaced the roof on AJ's house and while he was replacing the roof AJ noticed Tom had R/C cars. They started talking and AJ had a ton of questions and asked Tom who his favorite driver was. Tom said Adam Drake. (I don't know Tom or if this is a true story, but that's what he told meŠ).
AW: Did the author or anyone involved with the feature have an RC background?
AD: I don't think the author or anyone involved in the feature has an R/C background, but hope R/C is in their future. :)
AW: What all did you guys do with the crew who put everything together?
AD: It started with a lot of emails and a few phone conversations, then we worked on scheduling with my race schedule. The WSJ then sent out a photographer and a vidoographer. The shoot took about five hours total. We actually had to finish the video in my race trailer at our house because we ran out of sunlight.
AW: What's been the response you’ve received?
AD: The response has been amazing. Hopefully it will create more exposure for our industry and open more doors. In 22 hours it was shared over 100 times and reached over 55,000 from my Facebook page.
AW: Thank you for sharing, Adam!
AD: Thank you!