Author: Matty Clarke - Spec Wing Drone Racer, FPVR Drone Racing League
Drone Racing is a new high speed competitive racing e-sport
where it’s skilled operators pilot their remotely controlled machines through a 3-D racetrack from a First Person perspective, hence the term of FPV Racing (First Person View).
Most commonly seen in video games, the First Person racing experience is supremely immersive, with the only vision being able to be consumed by the pilot that of the forward facing view from the drone. It’s this experience that creates the ‘hook’ for those who enter the sport, as even at the beginner level it is a moment full of thrills and spills as up to 8 pilots can be racing at once along a track that would fit within a football ground.
With the roots drone racing being established in Australia sometime between 2013-14, it is a sport that quickly grew from a small underground movement consisting of a few likeminded friends gathering in fields, carparks and even abandoned empty buildings to now, where specific racing clubs have formed, National and International Racing Organisations are now hosting and producing world-class, televised events drawing participation from pilots and sponsors from all over the world.
The rapid growth of this tech-based sport can be attributed in part due to it’s relative low cost (when compared to other motor/aerial sports) and ease of entry for beginners.
With FPV drones now being supplemented with the accessibility of computer simulators, with game developers investment in the physics and ‘feel’ of their software being first and foremost so that there is little to no sensory difference between a real machine and the online variation.
It’s this online model that has allowed many enthusiasts to enter the sport, where they can learn, practice and refine their skills with no additional ongoing expense that would normally occur in real world learning conditions (like crashing). It’s this unique crossover being created that drone racing has become a true multi-platform e-sport where skills learned and refined in the online world can directly transfer to the real world in real time, and as a result earning some huge opportunities for pilots.
In 2019 drone racing has seen not only exciting moments in racing for pilots and spectators, but also exciting opportunity for pilots being able to gain not only sponsorship and employment within the industry by those developing the technology used on their machines, but also for the opportunity to represent their countries in World Championship and other International events, and it shows no signs of slowing down anytime soon.
Spec Wing Drone Racer, FPVR Drone Racing League.