Practice English Listening: Drone Racing

English Listening Lesson

Listening level: 3
Audio file: 2:03 min
Story length: 278 words


Here is the listening file for this lesson.


Drone Racing

What’s the latest fad in sport? Drone racing.

Popular with technology geeks and thrill seekers, drone racing combines virtual reality technology with video game competition.

The history of drone racing starts in 2014. Instead of flying drones around a field, amateur flyers decided to have fun by organizing races. Small cameras on the drones allowed flyers to record and upload races. As video clips of racing drones spread across social media, interest in the sport grew.

Racing drone technology is different from the machines sold to department stories. Racing drones are designed to go fast. Many fly up to 160 kph. In addition, drone flyers, called pilots, wear a special pair of goggles that lets them see what the camera sees.

The feeling is very virtual reality. It’s like you’re in the driver’s seat of the drone. Good quality racing drones cost around $500. Some are more than $3000. The goggles cost between $100 and $400.

Like a video game, racing is exciting. Races are held on a track. Some are inside a building and others are outdoors. Indoor tracks have obstacles, like walls and tunnels, which means collisions do occur. It’s common for a drone to hit something and smash into small pieces.

Races are held in many countries including the US, Canada, England and France. International games attract 100 or more racers hoping to win cash. In 2016, a pilot from England won $250,000 for finishing first in a race in Dubai.

Drone racing is a new sport that seems to be catching on. Some races are shown on TV.

It’s a fast and furious sport that takes cutting edge game technology to the next level.

More Practice

Here’s a gap fill exercise. Download the drone racing printable worksheet (pdf file). Listen to the story and fill in the blanks.

Learn English Online with More Listening Practice

Ready for another lesson? Try this free online listening comprehension lesson about about the history of the iPod.

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