For those of you unfamiliar with the English capital, take it from me that there are few sights more iconic than London’s Wembley stadium. For the first time ever this week, the 90,000-capacity venue has been hosting drone racing. It’s normally home of the England soccer team, but with a few adjustments an incredible racetrack quickly materialized.
Mobile network EE, along with mobile technology provider Qualcomm Technologies, transformed England’s most famous sporting into an aerial race course to host the freestyle Drone Racing event. The bespoke course was put together by the European Rotor Sports Association (ERSA), and included runs through the players’ tunnel, bank turns around the corner flags, and barrel rolls above the royal box.
The exhibition event was the perfect chance to celebrate the recent success of Europe’s leading pilots, and also happened to be something of a homecoming for Luke Bannister, the English 16 year-old who led a team to a $250,000 prize at the Drone World Prix in Dubai last month.
ERSA’s engineers built prototype racing drones to work with Qualcomm’s Snapdragon Flight drone platform, a highly optimized 58x40mm board targeted specifically for consumer drones applications. They seemed to work pretty well too, as you can see in the video below. The video feed from each drone was also streamed, via EE’s 4G network, to spectators inside the London stadium and across the web.
EE Brand Director, Spencer McHugh, said, “This superfast new sport is the perfect test for our 4G network, and Wembley Stadium provided the perfect racetrack, as well as putting these amazing drone pilots on the world’s biggest stage. Being able to stream the breath-taking action live over 4G to screens online and around this great stadium takes the sport of drone racing to another level.”