The Red Bull brand is all about speed. And with a tagline like “Red Bull gives you wings,” drone racing seems like an obvious space for Red Bull to bring their unique blend of hipster cool and circus-like production.
Red Bull’s DR.ONE took place in Spielberg, Austria last week. For the race, Red Bull created “one of the toughest and most unique drone courses ever built” and set up a competition with 18 of the world’s top drone racers.
The course was inspired by the elements: and drones dealt with flames, waterfalls, and blasts of air. The rules were a little different too – Red Bull allowed for more strategy and creativity in development of the drones, limiting weight to 1.5 kg but size only based on the smallest obstacle path (50 cms.)
The two day race saw 20-year old Austrian pilot Bastian Hackl take home the win.
“Youngster, Hackl, said: “I tried to keep cool at the start as I started after everyone else and followed them around the course. I tried to push it even more after every lap to catch them up and overtake them. To win is amazing!” reports Red Bull.
“Polish pilot Max Poschwald added: It was exceptional. We have never seen a kind of track like this before with fire, water and wind, it was just crazy. The final race we started off aggressively and it was very intense, a really good race.’”
Red Bull’s involvement in the sport is recognition that drone racing is on the edge of mainstream. As producers keep trying to make drone racing more of a spectator event (small drones flying at 150 mph are going to fast to see much from a distance) the introduction of more races and more media presence may do more than anything else to help grow the sport.