MACHINES

Billionaire Wants Drone Racing To Be The Next NASCAR

The owner of the Miami Dolphins has invested $1 million in the Drone Racing League

Aug 13, 2015 at 12:54 PM ET

The owner of an NFL football team is throwing his support—as well as his money—behind a new sport: Drone racing.

Stephen Ross, the real-estate developer who owns the Miami Dolphins, has invested $1 million in the Drone Racing League, a startup organization that’s aiming to be the next NASCAR.

“We backed it because it has all the makings of a modern-day sport—Twitch meets Formula One,” Matt Higgins, president and CEO of Ross’ RSE Ventures, told ESPN. “The pilots have to have great reflexes and hone their skills over hours and hours of practice. And first-person viewing lends itself to an amazing spectator experience with virtual reality.”

The pilots will wear glasses that give them a cock-pit-eye view of the course as they navigate their way through it at speeds of up to 70 mph. The trouble the sport may face is getting people to watch it: The small size of the unmanned aircrafts make it tough to see them in person. But Higgins is confident. “It’s hard to predict exactly where it goes, but it’s going somewhere,” he said.