Category: Safety

Will Self Balancing Scooter Racing Become a Sport?

 

Will Self Balancing Scooter Racing Become a Sport

 

The odds are pretty good that you’ve seen at least a couple of people zip by you on your daily commute, out at the park, or while shopping on top of what looks like a modern-day hover board. And the odds are just as good that you’ve wondered how they are able to cruise along so fast on such a small piece of technology.

Well, today’s best selling hoverboards or self balancing scooters have definitely come a long way since the early days of their invention. Not only are they a lot more compact than they ever were, but they’re also able to tackle all kinds of terrain, are able to go further than they ever were able to on a single charge, and are also a lot faster – and a lot safer – than they used to be.

All of this has led to people wondering whether or not a new sport of racing was going to crop up, where athletes are literally racing these self balanced scooters (likely heavily modified like most other racecars) against one another to see who comes out on top.

We might be a lot closer to that reality than some people are aware of!

Self balancing scooters are a pretty new to the world

Remember, we are still talking about a pretty young transportation technology here in self balancing scooters.

Though companies have been experimenting with this technology for quite a while, it’s only in the last four or five years that these solutions have really become popular. On top of that, human beings have an innate kind of drive that wants to compete, that wants to push the limits of technology, and that loves nothing more than going head-to-head against someone else to see who’s going to come out on top.

The odds are very good that we’ll start to see more and more people racing their self balancing scooters in the years to come.

There are already self balancing scooter “racing clubs” in the United States

There are already quite a few scooter “racing clubs” in the United States, though they aren’t quite as organized yet as they likely will be in the future.

Thousands of people have already joined these racing clubs, and many of them compete against people in their local area. If this is anything like the other grassroot racing clubs that have sprung up in the United States in the past, dating all the way back to the early days of NASCAR, the odds are very good that once things are refined in the US these racing groups will be “exported” to the rest of the world as well.

Similar tech like the Segway has international racing clubs as well

If you are seriously wondering whether or not people are going to be excited about racing self balancing scooters against one another, all you have to do is look to the “big brother” technology of the Segway and you’ll have your answer.

Though it was a bit of a commercial flop (and continues to be a very, very niche product), there’s no arguing that the people that do love their Segway are incredibly passionate and loved pushing it to its limits.

A bunch of people race these self balancing transportation machines all over the United States (and the rest of the world), and it’s actually one of the most popular uses of these machines like drones. If you’re wondering whether or not self balancing scooters are going to catch on as a racing machine, all you have to do is look at the robust community of Segway racers and you’ll have your answer!



How Can Drones Improve the Safety of Racing?

The technology behind drones has revolutionized a number of industries already. You have probably seen a neighbour flying one already and some of the best drones are available to anybody. Never before has it been so easy to get an aerial vantage point without actually having to man the vehicle itself. One market where drones could potentially be used to increase safety is racing. drones racing

Finding Issues Before They Become a Problem

When you think about long distant races, you’re always going to have possible threats awaiting participants down the line. For example, during the Tour de France, workers constantly have to stay ahead of the cyclists to ensure that anything in the road that would run the risk of getting someone hurt is removed as soon as possible.

However, drones could potentially do a much better job of this. Workers don’t have to man vehicles that take to the course and could potentially break down or otherwise cause problems of their own.

A drone can find the issue and the controller can then communicate it to workers who then go out to the track and handle the problem.

Keeping Cameramen Safe

Racing is definitely a great sport for audiences. While it combines competition with an adrenaline rush, it also takes a lot of cameramen coordinating in order to provide the view the audience wants. When you think of sports like NASCAR, this means incurring significant threats when things go wrong.

Obviously, this kind of a risk isn’t a factor for drones. It’s possible one of them could get completely destroyed if a crash occurred, but no one would get hurt in the process. Drones can supply the best possible vantage points—including ever-more ambitious ones necessary to keep viewers—without putting anyone in a risky situation.

A good example of a cameraman getting put in harm’s way actually took place this past summer during the Eneco Tour. During stage seven, Eugenio Alafaci crashed into Karsten Kroon, which resulted in a cameraman getting knocked over.

Keeping Participants Safe

The other thing you need to consider about including cameramen in a race is that they pose a threat to participants too. Many can get too aggressive with their approach. Either way, as with the Eneco Tour example, their participation often puts the racers at risk. Those cyclists, for example, had bones broken due, in part, because of the cameraman they ran into.

Drones can cover more ground than cameramen ever could without having to put any one in a position where they can get hurt or injured worse. The technology has been advancing rapidly in this area and some of the best dones are capable of pretty exciting things.

Reviewing Accidents

Unfortunately, when it comes to races, crashes and other accidents are all but inevitable. Nonetheless, it makes sense to keep working toward making these events as unlikely as possible in the future. One way to do this is by reviewing what happened to cause the incident.

With a drone, you can follow each participant and/or the entire group as it moves through the course you can now get a better understanding for how an accident happened if one should. By doing this, parties can be held accountable, rules can be changed, courses can be altered, etc. in order to ensure things are safer in the future.

For all these reasons and more, racing should be the next market to benefit from drone technology.