25 Jan 2017

Taking flight! It’s lift off for the FAI Drone Racing World Cup 2017

Stand by drone racing fans: the FAI Drone Racing World Cup 2017 is coming - and it looks set to be better and more exciting than ever before. A total of 15 events have already been confirmed for the 2017 edition of the FAI Drone Racing World Cup.

That’s three more than there were in the 2016 competition, which was won by Belgian pilot Vincent Delcommene.

And event organisers expect further competitions to be announced in countries such as Slovakia, Poland and USA.

At each event, competitors will participate in a series of races flying multi-rotor drone with at least three power-driven propellers and weighing no more than 1kg.

The dramatic and often nail-biting races will create a fabulous spectacle for participants and spectators alike. “I am really looking forward to the many events and meetings announced for 2017,” reigning champion Delcommene said.

A truly international event

Based on the list of competitions already registered, this year’s World Cup will begin and end in Seville in Spain, which is hosting the 2017 Open Internacional Ciudad de Sevilla event in March and the 2017 Open Internacional Circuito de Jerez in November.

However, World Cup competitions will be held far and wide across the globe. The other countries that have already confirmed plans to host events throughout the year are: Austria, Bulgaria, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, France, Germany, Korea, Portugal, Sweden and Ukraine.

French event organiser Laurent Khong is hoping to run his competition in a public park. "I am excited about holding the competition in a park as it will mean it attracts a lot of spectators," he said.

May will be the busiest month for those involved with the event. There are three competitions registered in this month alone: the 2017 Allianz Arena - WDR in Nice in France, the 2017 Seoul Drone Race World Cup in the Korean capital of Seoul, and the 2017 Phoenix World Cup in Prilep in the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia.

Last year’s event attracted 229 competitors from 17 different countries.

As the popularity of drone racing grows around the world, even more pilots are expected to fight it out to be crowned champion in 2017.

"Drone racing seems to be getting more popular," Khong said. "I think there is huge potential as the races can be as exciting as a Formula One event, but it is obviously a lot easier to organise and take part in a drone racing competition."

List of 2017 World Cup event (as of 25 January 2017)


2017 Open Internacional Ciudad de Sevilla

Seville (Spain)

24 - 26 March

2017 Allianz Arena -WDR

Nice (France)

05 - 08 May

Drone Festival - Race

Gdynia (Poland)

13 - 14 May

2017 Seoul Drone Race World Cup

Seoul (Korea)

19 - 21 May

2017 Phoenix World Cup

Prilep (Former Yugoslav 
Rep. of Macedonia)

27 - 28 May

2017 Leiria Drone Race World Cup

Leiria (Portugal)

10 - 11 June

2017 Kyov Rotor Cup

Kyiv (Ukraine)

16 - 19 June

Trencin FPV Cup 2017

Trencin (Slovak Republic)

08 July

Sweden World Cup

Sodertalje (Sweden)

21 - 23 July

2017 Setubal Drone Race

Leiria (Portugal)

29 July

2nd Mitteldeutscher FPV Race Cup

Bitterfeld (Germany)

19 - 20 August

2017 Air Masters World Cup

Spielberg (Austria)

29 September - 
01 October

2017 F3U Bulgaria Cup

Plovdiv (Bulgaria)

30 September - 
01 October

2017 Daegu Drone Race World Cup

Seoul (Korea)

06 -08 October

2017 Open Internacional Circuito de Jerez

Seville (Spain)

10 - 11 November

Drone Racing explained

Drone racing competitions consist of successive races in which several (normally four) radio controlled model aircraft fight it out to be the fastest around a pre-determined circuit.

The events can take place inside or outside and each drone is operated by an FPV (first person view) pilot assisted by a helper.

These high-tech drones are equipped with on-board video cameras that transmit images to headsets worn by the pilots, allowing them to steer the tiny aircraft around the race circuit.

To find out more on the FAI Drone World Cup (calendar, rules, documents, rankings) please click here.

Photo Credit: B&K Presse-WDR