Lots of people have hobbies … but drone racing is a particularly awesome one. Especially when it’s a contest that’s reminiscent of a Star Wars: Episode I pod race. Come on.
The Airgonay drone club, based in the French Alps, organized a race in the forest for lightweight drones that bob, weave, and generally fly at up to 40 miles per hour. These are remote-controlled drones, not autonomous, so operators have on-board cameras to see where their devices are going and take snazzy in-race footage.
The course is a 492-foot loop on public land in Argonay, France, and Gigaom notes that the racers had a permit for the event. Herve Pellarin, the president of the club, says in the video that he is hoping that putting information about the race online will help spread similar drone events.
Like in Star Wars: Episode I, the race is three laps. But there’s less Jar Jar Binks in this showdown, so that’s an improvement.