The Drone Racing League Has Officially Launched

We have had eSports for a while now and while I can understand why it captures so many people all around the world, it wasn’t anything for me. What was missing in eSports for me, I might find in the new Drone Racing League that now officially has been launched. The Drone Racing League, or DRL for short, is just what it sounds to be, so there aren’t many surprises there.

Drone racing could very well become one of the biggest sports of the future. While it doesn’t take the physical agility that normal race drivers need, this requires just as much concentration and skills from the pilots. The quad-copter drones are equipped with cameras that allow the pilots to stay in control while they also allow spectators to get the same view as the pilots.

FPV Quadcopter drone pilots have been competing on a smaller scale for a while and last summer we also saw the first FPV Quadcopter Racing Drone Nationals at the California State Fair. The Drone Racing League takes the whole thing to a new level and a much wider audience. This is a multimillion-dollar league and not just some amateurs competing to see who is best. The first race was held in the Miami Dolphins football stadium in Florida and Stephen Ross, the owner of the stadium, is one of the main investors in the DRL. Other investors include Matt Bellamy, the lead singer of Muse, and the talent agency CAA.

The drone have been specially built for this league and can reach speeds of up to 80 mph. The races will be streamed and the league has no doubt that it one day will fill the stadium with thousands of screaming fans. For now, there are six races planned for this year where the first was flown yesterday.

The video above is more of a teaser for the entire thing and I bet quite a few want to see more. So below you’ll find a video from last years FPV Quadcopter drone nationals. This video gives more insight into the technology and some of the hard legwork that has been done before this league could become a reality. Scot Refsland, the organizer behind last year’s Drone Nationals, is also working on a bigger competition for this year called the Drone Worlds and it is set to be held in Hawaii this time.

Racing Drones Could Be the Sport of the Future

The crowd at East Grinstead would have been a strange sight, most people are wearing plastic goggles with long antennas sticking up, ignoring their surroundings and staring out into what looks like empty space. The new race of cyborgs? No! it’s Just Drone racers!

Despite this, they all act like a crowd at a football match, letting out sighs of oohs and aahs in unison, responding to some unseen action; much like the little green aliens in Toy Story. Then, all of a sudden a small drone skitters out of the trees on their right, crashing through the brushes before landing in a spray of dirt and leaves.

This is the new and intriguing world of  drone racing, as drones become an increasingly mainstream phenomenon, racing leagues have popped up around the world. Anyone who takes it seriously — pilot or spectator — doesn’t watch their craft from a distance, but instead uses mounted cameras and special video goggles to see the world from their drone’s perspective, also known as first-person racing or FPV.

The course at East Grinstead is 100 meters long and is rather rural, It runs through a stretch of woodland on a steep hillside. The course is so narrow they can’t race several drones at once so instead, use a timing system to take part in time trials. Each Pilot pays £10 to enter and gets four laps around the track and the winner takes the pot.

Sounds good right! Get yourself a drone and take yourself to East Grinstead and give it a go!

Thank you to TheVerge for providing us with this information

Image courtesy of TheVerge

How to Make Your Own Racing Drone

Popular tech-centric YouTube channel ‘Tested’ has produced a handy guide to producing your own racing drone.

Racing quadcopters have been the subject of a number of enthralling YouTube videos, showing packs of drones whizzing past trees at ridiculous speeds with inches to spare. Just take a look at this one:

Now take a look at the tutorial to learn how to make your own:

Source: Gizmodo