2016 PNW Drone Nationals Qualifier

Whew what a weekend. Flew up to Bend, Oregon for the Pacific North West Drone Nationals Qualifier. Flew up after work Friday and was home by 9:00AM on Sunday morning. Sadly I didn’t get to spend too much time in Bend other than attending the race. The race was a mixed bag. While I tied for 3rd after Qualifying I ended up taking 5th due to a mid-air in the final race right at the start. I did finally qualify for Drone Nationals though!!! BUT I will not be attending it as I have conflicts and cannot make it. Thankfully we were able to pass the “golden ticket” onto the next person in line so at least he can now go!

The big thing was the race format was very interesting, at least I had never seen anything like that before. We were given one practice round and then three qualifying rounds. If you qualified well you continued on, if you didn’t you were done. Now the people that qualified 1-5 had a race. The person that won that race moved onto the “finals” and were given the “golden ticket”. The person that qualified #6 would then enter the race against the remainder of the people from 1-5 taking the place of the other person. So on and so forth until all the “tickets” were given out. Because FlyingBearFPV (Ken) was already qualified and the fact I gave up my ticket, they ended up having 7 of these races to find who got those last two spots. This “format” really favors the people that qualify well.

World Drone Prix 2016

World Drone Prix 2016 Logo

Where to begin? I’m going to Dubai!!! Sadly though I didn’t put the effort in to be a pilot. I am going with Team AirVuz and supporting FlyingBearFPV (friend and fellow teammate on AirVuz and Multirotor Super Store). I am very excited to be attending the very first World Drone Prix, and hope to see it becoming an annual event that I attend!

So where do we stand now? We were one of the top 32 teams that qualified so our trip is covered. That is a small chunk of what we are doing. The past two nights several team members have been building quads. We have built six quad copters for the races. Today we have a little bit of practice ahead of us. We already are trying to use the equipment that will be raced with at the event. Sadly it’s pouring rain here so our testing must be conducted in a garage which isn’t ideal. The qualifying for the event (Monday / Tuesday) is an indoor race, so maybe it will play to our advantage a little.

I am so unprepared for travel. I still have so much last minute stuff to buy and pack. I am bringing my quads (Rage 210 and Rage X – Raceflight Edition). I am the backup pilot for the event, so I have to be ready to jump into the action if needed. I have not practiced nearly as much as I wish I could have done by this point though.

So for the next week this blog will be filled with what is currently going on with us and how we are doing!