The National Drone League in the Philippines concluded recently to proper success.
We caught up with the brains behind the inaugural National Drone League, Kalki Jimenez, to find out more about the one of the biggest drone racing event in the Philippines.
1) What was the key motivation behind staging your first drone racing event?
I wanted to produce a series of drone racing events to create a platform for local pilots to gain more exposure, and take them beyond just the regular park races. It’s also to create public awareness that FPV Drone Racing exists and is booming in the Philippines. We aim to run these events at international standards, for example, adopting proper timing systems for the races. This helps to make FPV racing more professional and in turn, prove that it is a lucrative sport for sponsors to support drone league teams and events.
2) Tell us more about the programme and profile of the pilots who participated in the race.
We had more than 60 pilots who took part, including a few international pilots from Hong Kong. The event lasted 12 hours
with non-stop drone racing and other activities at Clark International Speedway, a first in the Philippines for a drone race held at a race circuit. We had more than 2000 people turned up to watch the race and experience more than drone racing, including Drag Racing, Car Show, Drifting and a music concert. We also had Trappy of Team Blacksheep who came and supported the race which was a draw for local pilots to meet an international drone icon who also sponsored and witness our race.
3) Were your expectations met for the first drone racing event staged?
Yes! Definitely there speedbumps in some areas but at the end of the day we pulled through and create a successful event.
4) There must have been learnings in some areas for the next event. Could you share what can participants look forward to in subsequent events?
Pilots can look forward to unique and challenging courses to race in at each event. This also helps to keep pilots on their toes. As you can tell, we are focused not just on the pilots’ experience, but also the audience’s. We want to create an immersive experience for the audience and live broadcast of the races. Our goal is to make every event unique and engaging for anyone who attends.
5) So any news on when the next event is?
Plans are in place for a TinyWhoop indoor race some time in December so watch the space!