What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas. Unless it’s a Mr.-Toad’s-Wild-Ride-on-acid type of drone race captured via first-person-view video stream that’s set to a remix of Major Lazer and DJ Snake’s hit song “Lean On.” In that case, it’s posted to YouTube for everybody to watch.
Talk about a trip.
All the way back in 2015 we got a look at some “underground” first-person view (FPV) drone racing in Australia, as well as the National Drone Racing Championships that took place on U.S. soil (air?). It was quite an eye-opening experience, although some of us had to quickly close them back up to keep from barfing. That’s because FPV drone racing uses cameras mounted on competing drones to stream first-person video back to pilots on the ground, who are able to view the stream in real-time through VR-type goggles. Pilots are placed “inside” of the drones so they can experience the thrill of high-speed drone racing—and frequent drone crashing—for themselves.
Now, thanks to drone enthusiast and YouTuber Bapu FPV, we have a look at what it was like to participate in the XDC_2 Xtreme Drone Circuit Races, which were held following CES 2016 in Las Vegas. The competition attracted 75 of the world’s top drone pilots, and a new element was added to the mix: a three-dimensional FPV racetrack adorned with all types of psychedelic obstacles like glowing neon hoops and even a ring that spits hot fire! A computer rendering of the full course is seen below:
Looking forward, FPV drone racing is likely to grow as sport. The 2016 US National Drone Racing Championships should be announced soon, and it seems that, in general, drones are only becoming more and more popular. Drone races could take on a range of other awesome themes aside from “wild Las Vegas weekend” too. Star Wars podracing perhaps? Or Star Fox arwings? Flying mecha? The sky’s the limit, literally.
What do you think about FPV drone racing and the XDC_2 Xtreme Drone Circuit Races? Are you ready to pilot your own FPV quadcopter or are you reaching for the Dramamine? Let us know in the comments section below!
Image: Bapu FPV