Either reflecting the pace of technological development, or perhaps reflective of the need to find content for the mass of television channels, drone racing looks set to become a new sport with the establishment of a televised league.
For those looking for something to watch after Thursday Night Football comes a new sport airing on ESPN: Drone racing.
By Paul Blake
Almost 3,000 miles from home and standing on an island that was once the site of a military installation, Ken Loo stared intently into a set of goggles, his fingers twitching over controls as he reacted to the scratchy drone video beaming directly into his eyes.
Hurtling through the air overhead at speeds as high as 60 miles per hour, his and other drones transmitted the images to pilots who were competing in the U.S. National Drone Racing Championships last weekend on New York’s Governors Island.
Behind safety netting, a small audience gathered to sip beer and watch the devices fly around the course, weaving in and out of obstacles. Some put on orange spectator goggles, which allowed them to toggle between feeds from the drones’ onboard cameras.
By Jeremy Wyckoff
I had a tough decision this past Saturday: Head out to the field to spend the day flying with my friend Bob, “BaveronaFVP” Averona , or attend the U.S. National Drone Racing Championships (Drone Nationals) on Governor’s Island—the first nationally televised drone racing event in history.
I’ve been to drone events like this, with amazing tracks setup for top pilots and race teams. But I find I spend the day separated from the real action, and am left wanting to go home and fly FPV (first-person view) drones myself.
Sponsored by ESPN, the Drone Nationals was different—fun for non-hobbyists, as well as those pilots who aren’t quite as skilled as this level (read: just one-quarter as fast). For just $10, I snagged a trackside ticket, with access to the pits, trackside viewing, drone racing computer simulators, free and discounted swag and equipment. But more importantly? I got up close with the organizers, the pioneering technology companies behind drone racing, and the pilots I follow so I can progress with my own racing skills.
“Everything is better when it flies.”
Yep, there is really a company who will take your deceased pets and turn them into drones.
One of the men behind Copter Company, Bart Jansen, explains that the idea came when he decided to turn his beloved cat Orville into a drone after he was run over by a car.
Ralph Gardner Jr. gets a chance to fly a drone ahead of the The Liberty Cup at the Liberty Science Center
Vuzix Corporation (NASDAQ: VUZI) announced that the Company is partnering with Amimon, developer of the industry’s first all-digital HD drone vision system – the Connex ProSight, to sponsor an international drone racing team. This team will compete in select racing events worldwide using Vuzix iWear Video Headphones combined with the Connex’s ProSight latency-free wireless vision system.
The first major event will be the 2016 US National Drone Racing Championships being held at Governors Island in New York City on August 5-7, 2016. This event is scheduled to be broadcast and streamed by ESPN, as the companies’ products may be seen by nationally. The event marks the first time an all-digital zero latency vision system will be used in a sanctioned racing event.