AURORA, Colo. (CBS4) – It's not motorcross, a new craze called Rotorcross has piqued the interest of many drone owners in Colorado. A CBS4 photographer recently traveled to Aurora Sports Park to see what drone racing is all about. He found some ...
July 18, 2016 12:54 PM
Filed Under: Aurora, Aurora Sports Park, Drone Racing, Drones, Jesse Perkins, Zachry Thayer
AURORA, Colo. (CBS4) â€“ Itâ€™s not motorcross, a new craze called Rotorcross has piqued the interest of many drone owners in Colorado.
A CBS4 photographer recently traveled to Aurora Sports Park to see what drone racing is all about. He found some serious competitors among the entrants into the Regional 5A MultiGP Qualifiers.
Each â€œpilotâ€ was using a transmitter to control their drone remotely as it flew around a large course set up with cones and gates. Many of the hobbyists, like Jesse Perkins, were controlling their drone while wearing special goggles.
â€œThese arenâ€™t virtual reality, these are video display goggles. So each eye has a screen,â€ he told CBS4. â€œIt lets me view the camera thatâ€™s in the quad (drone) in real time. And thatâ€™s what makes you feel like youâ€™re really flying.â€
Also noticeable at the park was the loud buzz coming from the drones as they whipped around the course.
â€œWe love the sounds of the props,â€ one pilot told CBS4. â€œItâ€™s like a finely tuned engine in a sense.â€
Many ofÂ the pilots present told CBS4 they are seeing an explosion in popularity in the sport. That has some dreaming of making big money in competitions.
â€œI think Iâ€™m like a lot of other people â€” I really want to do this professionally. Some of my teammates are already there,â€ Perkins said. â€œIâ€™m getting a lot closer. And we all want to turn this into an income somehow.â€
Controlling the drones takes some getting used to, according to the racers.
â€œThe same racing techniques are needed as in any other racing event,â€ said Zachry Thayer, whose goggles had BIG WHOOP printed on them. â€œYou really need to be smooth, consistent and really push the edge, and find the edge of the track.â€
Drones similar to the ones being used at the park can be purchased for approximately $500.
â€œI played video games growing up. I donâ€™t know if that helped or if it didnâ€™t. Itâ€™s completely different. Itâ€™s real world flying. Regardless of putting on the nerd goggles or grabbing a transmitter, you still are flying a real aircraft,â€ Thayer said.
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