Thursday, June 30rd at 8PM EST will be the second episode of “Battlebots – Season 2”. And, Consort’s very own Bryan Lepley may be glimpsed on-camera at the Los Angeles ABC studio’s taping of the show. Consort’s Kalamazoo Waterjet division is, for the second year in a row, a major sponsor for the “WitchDoctor” crew and Bryan was invited to attend the competition in late May. But, “Mum is the word about who won and how Witch Doctor came out,” says Bryan. “Everyone signed a non-disclosure so I can’t say a thing! Just watch the show and find out. I can tell you that our Witch Doctor is supposed to appear on episode two, on the 30th.”
So, what is Battlebots? Here’s a brief overview: “The homemade robots are back for season two, where they will battle against each other in a single elimination tournament until there is one champion. The ten episode series will feature next generation robots – bigger, faster and stronger than ever before. The show will continue to emphasize the design and build elements of each robot, the bot builder backstories, their intense pursuit of the championship and the spectacle of the event. While there's only one weight class, there are a huge variety of deadly weapons. Forty-eight robots will enter, but in the end, only one will win the final trophy.”
Until you see these robots in action you can’t imagine what this is all about, but check out this Youtube video of last year’s battle between Witch Doctor and Tombstone and you’ll get the idea: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m4AAIfQD8ew . According to Bryan, all robots were redesigned and are generally tougher and proved to be more aggressive, especially Witch Doctor. Each entry has a weight limit and if there is an accompanying smaller robot or drone with the main entry, the total weight of the two cannot exceed 250 pounds. Witch Doctor has a little buddy, named Shaman, and there are flying drones with other entries. The drones are new for this year.
The show is ten episodes and you’ll find that it’s somewhat addicting to see how the different designs and structures hold up against each other. “These folks are all nuts, but in a good way!,” says Bryan.Through Bryan’s efforts Kalamazoo’s own Schupan and Sons and Good Metals Company of Grand Rapid are also a Witch Doctor sponsors, making Southwest Michigan well-represented at this amazing battleground.