ARE you a fan of drones? Head over to Bukit Bintang City Centre (the former Pudu Jail site) this weekend August 6 and 7 for the EcoWorld MultiGP Drone Racing Championship 2016. The race, which will be held in four legs starting with Kuala Lumpur, Johor, Selangor and Penang, will see 52 drone racers from Malaysia, Singapore, Brunei and Thailand put their flying machines to the limit.
According to the organisers, 2 Cool Productions and MultiGP Malaysia, the race has added significance especially to the pilots competing as the race is also the National Qualifiers for the World Drone Racing Championship to be held in Hawaii from Oct 17 to 22, 2016. Property developer Eco World Development Group Berhad is the title sponsor as well as the venue sponsor for the championship at Bukit Bintang City Centre (BBCC). Race drones in action. Pix by Izwan Ismail A total of 150 pilots from 30 countries are expected to compete for a total prize money of US$200,000. As the official qualifier race, the top 5 Malaysians from the BBCC leg will qualify to represent Malaysia in Hawaii. The difference between the race drones and the normal camera drones is that these are fast-flying and go through obstacles on a “track”. With the use of a mini camera mounted on drones wirelessly streaming live video and a video headset goggles for the pilot, the drones can be maneuvered through tricky courses with great precision and speed. A huge crowd is expected to throng BBCC, from drone enthusiast to fans that enjoy the speed rush, to families planning a fun weekend out. Entry is free-of-charge and is open to the public.
Apart from enjoying the race itself the public can enjoy other activities that have been lined up that weekend. There will be a netted arena for the public to try their hand at drone flying and also flying simulators. Further adrenaline rushing activities include the Bagjump Trampoline where the public get to jump on dual trampolines and land on a cushioned safety bag. Another highlight for the weekend is the Sky Rider where a person gets strapped to helium balloons and with a tethered wire is allowed to float up to the sky to a maximum of 50 feet for the best view of the race.