Drone racing, or also known as first-person-view (FPV) racing, is a type of sport where participants control drones that are equipped with cameras while wearing head-mounted displays to show the live stream camera feed from the drones to the pilot. Drone racing is quite similar to full-size air racing, which goal is to complete a set course as fast as possible. The sport started in 2011 in Germany, where several amateur pilots got together for semi-organized races in Karlsruhe.
There are also FPV racing organizations that create rules and regulations for a fair race among its pilots. Among the many organizations, MultiGP is the only one with chapters all over the world. It governs and sanctions drone racing events internationally. It is a drone racing league that hosts frequent competition-based tournaments and as well as casual events.
In addition to that, there’s also the Drone Racing League, which is a television program where the pilots are filmed competing in drone races. These are edited into hour-long episodes that can be watched on SKY Sports, ESPN, and more. There are many other organizations for drone racing in other parts of the world.
If you are interested to know more about drone racing, you’re in the right place. Today, we are giving you some of the top drone racing festivals.
Fédération Aéronautique Internationale’s Drone Racing World Championship
The very first drone racing world championship by FAI was held in 2018 in Shenzhen, China. It was broadcast live across different channels, including the Olympic channel. This race was won by a 17-year-old from Australia who competed with more than 128 pilots from different countries around the world.
DR1 Racing is a televised racing series where pilots need to maintain their own gear. It has different races and formats airing on television. In 2017, the DR1 Racing’s DHL Champions Series Fueled by Mountain Dew was held. It consisted of 6 races in different locations around the world. The finals of this drone racing festival were held on the Isle of Man TT, and it was aired on CBS and Eurosport. The Series Finals on CBS was able to draw the largest audience ever for a professional drone race on television.
World Drone Prix
In 2016, the World Drone Prix, which is the world’s biggest and most lucrative drone race, was held in Dubai. This race has a total prize fund of $1 million.
U.S. National Drone Racing Championships
In 2016, the U.S. National Drone Racing Championships presented by GoPro was held in New York. The following year, the second annual event was held in New York City’s Governor’s Island. There were 145 pilots who competed in this event for a total prize of $57,000.
MultiGP National Championships
In 2016, the MultiGP National Championships were held in Indiana. There were more than 140 pilots who joined, looking for a chance to win $15,000. It was held at the Academy of Model Aeronautics or AMA headquarters in Muncie, Indiana.
World Drone Racing Championships
The World Drone Racing Championships took place in 2016 in Kualoa Ranch, Island of Oahu, Hawaii.
TOS Asia Cup Shanghai and China Drone National
These two were the largest FPV drone racing in Asia in 2016. There were more than 140 registered pilots from 15 different countries who participated in these drone racing festivals.
The DR1 Invitational was the most-watched drone racing festival in 2016. It also aired on Eurosport and Discovery Channel in more than 70 countries all over the world. The race was held in Sepulveda Dam, where the drones flew through the dam’s opening. There were also various gates on the course.
US Fat Shark National Drone Racing Championships
In 2015, the first annual US National Drone Racing Championships were held in a stadium at the California State Fair. The prize for this competition was $25,000. There were more than 100 competitors who joined this festival. All the three events included in this competition were won by an Australian named Chad Nowak. This gave him the title of 2015 Drone Racing National Champion.
Drone racing is indeed a very unique and fun sport. Today, there are also many drone racing simulators out there. Meaning, you can play drone racing on computers via drone flight simulations. There are also games being introduced on computers and consoles that feature drone racing. With the advancement of technology, it is likely that we will see more drone racing events and festivals in the future.