Drones are becoming more and more part of our lives. Innovation within the industry has given it the momentum to become not only a method of transportation, but a new sport that can be enjoyed by everyone. This week, we spoke to our partner, Lars Sang Mo Boom from FormulaFPV, about drone racing and how he sees the role of education in a future full of drones:
Amsterdam Drone Week: Can you shortly introduce yourself and FormulaFPV Drone Racing?
Lars Sang Mo Boom: I got interested in drones about 5 years ago when I bought one to make videos during my holiday. Soon, I got connected with the drone community and there I saw a video of a drone racer in a forest. From that moment on I was captured by the speed and thrill of racing drones. Soon I started organising events in the Netherlands that became popular with a large group of pilots.
Amsterdam Drone Week: What is FormulaFPV doing today?
Lars Sang Mo Boom: We have created the Drone Racing World Series, a sports concept that creates impact by supporting children online and offline to become the new drone racing champion. A variety of industries can use it to innovate their products and services, and schools of any level can use our programmes to educate the children. The first season of the Drone Racing World Series will launch in the second half of 2019. The full calendar and venues will be announced later this year, but you can count on it being spectacular!
Amsterdam Drone Week: What opportunities and challenges do you see when it comes to the unmanned aircraft industry developments?
Lars Sang Mo Boom: I believe that soon we will have a new way of transportation that will give us the opportunity to fly in autonomous flying drones. The world population is growing and roads and rails are getting overcrowded. The only logical step is to use the air space. Rotors will be replaced by turbine motors. We will redefine the roads in the air. We will remove the human as a pilot to increase safety and huge volumes of energy will be made as compact as a sugar cubes. If you think this is not going to happen, your mind is stuck in the last century.
Amsterdam Drone Week: What are your short and long term ambitions for FormulaFPV Drone Racing?
Lars Sang Mo Boom: We will start the first season of the Drone Racing World Series with three races in Europe. We will be adding two more each year. There will be an online platform where children can practice and improve their skills, connect with people from around the whole world and share and upload their amazing drone content. Schools can use our programme in every country where we will be racing. Industries will also be given the opportunity to use our knowledge to improve their products and services. The Drone Racing World Series will be broadcast live – like a true sports experience – and will help children make it to the highest level. It will have impact on the world of sports, education, and industries.
Amsterdam Drone Week: How do you see drone racing in comparison to the traditional racing culture?
Lars Sang Mo Boom: Many compare drone racing to e-sports. I think you can call it e-sports, however, drone racing is much more than that. When I look at other racing sports, I often analyse their audiences. Who is watching it? On which devices? Where? And who is in the stadium? I don’t really look at the sport itself. By doing so, I decide what drone racing is missing and where we can make big steps in proposals for branding and sponsoring. Many sponsors try to connect with a young audience, and that’s exactly what we attract.
Amsterdam Drone Week: In what way do you think drone technology & innovation change the world?
Lars Sang Mo Boom: The drone is the biggest innovation in air transportation in the last 50 years. Today, the innovation is going so fast that people are having a hard time keeping up-to-date. Knowledge is free and materials are also easy to get your hands on – they can even be 3D printed. So for me, the drone is here to stay and drone racing will earn its role in the world of sports.
Amsterdam Drone Week: How do you see the role of education in a future full of drones?
Lars Sang Mo Boom: One of the most important reasons why I started FormulaFPV is that I wanted to help children create their own future. I think it’s our job to let them experiment as much as possible and not tell them something is impossible. I come from the time where my teachers told me I had to study in order to get a job. Well, I believe we have to help children get connected with technology as much as possible so they can decide for themselves what they want to do. There won’t be jobs, there’ll be work, and ‘us’ oldies must not hold children back in their development. Don’t teach them, coach them and give them direction. Don’t take away technology from them, but help them to use it wisely.