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Learn to fly FPV drones with the U.S. Air Force flight school

Want to learn how to fly FPV drones from the comfort of your own home? You can now do so with the U.S. Air Force flight school in partnership with the Drone Racing League. The flight school is hosted by 2018 DRL Allianz World Champion Paul “Nurk” Nurkkala.

Starting back on July 11th, Nurk along with U.S. Air Force Senior Airman Stubblefield introduced the series to us and had a chat about gaming while in the U.S. Air Force, spoke about some basic tactics, and even learning the basics of flying an FPV drone.

Following the theme of the U.S Air Force, the flight school took place at the new U.S. Air Force Boneyard map in the DRL SIM which is based on the Davis-Monthan Air Force Base in Tucson, Arizona. It is known to be the world’s largest aircraft maintenance facility.

DRL President Rachel Jacobson said:

“We have an incredible partnership with the U.S. Air Force, who like DRL, are focused on tech innovation and bringing people with a passion for flight together. And what better way to celebrate National Aviation Day than learn how to fly through the U.S. Air Force DRL Flight School? DRL champion NURK leverages the DRL SIM, a must-play video game for any aspiring pilots, to teach fans how to take their drone racing skills from 0 – 90 MPH in less than a second — just like our DRL Racer4 drone!”

Maj. Gen. Ed Thomas, commander of Air Force Recruiting Service followed with:

“Our partnership with the Drone Racing League is based on our shared love for flying and our drive to be the best. Like those competing in the DRL, our pilots commit to flying their aircraft to its limits and better than anyone else.”

Thomas later added that the Boneyard DRL SIM map is a creative way that allows more people to experience and explore the ‘boneyard’ and immerse themselves in the history. He also said the partnership has allowed the U.S. Air Force to reach a new audience for potential recruits.

U.S. Air Force Flight School Episode Breakdown:

  • EPISODE 1: Introduction: U.S. Air Force DRL SIM Flight School: NURK introduces the United States Air Force Boneyard map on the DRL SIM and chats through basic tactics with U.S. Air Force Senior Airman Stubblefield, who is also a gamer. 
  • EPISODE 2: The Perfect Launch: U.S. Air Force DRL SIM Flight School: NURK shares helpful drone racing tips to perfect your launch and hit the apex of each gate.
  • EPISODE 3: Complex Maneuvers: U.S. Air Force DRL SIM Flight School: NURK explains how to master complex drone racing maneuvers to achieve the perfect line.
  • EPISODE 4: Camera Tilt & Rates: U.S. Air Force DRL SIM Flight School: NURK walks you through small changes you can make to your camera tilt or rate settings for your own flying comfort.
  • EPISODE 5: Flying Different Drones: U.S. Air Force DRL SIM Flight School: Even though Flight School takes place on the DRL SIM, you don’t have to fly the DRL Racer4, the drone raced by the pros as seen on NBC and Twitter. NURK takes you through what techniques you need to consider when flying different drones.
  • EPISODE 6: Freestyle Techniques: U.S. Air Force DRL SIM Flight School: In the last episode of the U.S. Air Force DRL SIM Flight School, NURK shows you some fun freestyle tricks.

You can watch the full six episodes of the flight school below. I recommended watching it even if you have been flying as Nurk shares some great tips he’s learned flying over the last few years.

Photo: DRL



Avatar for Josh Spires Josh Spires

Josh started in the drone community in 2012 with a drone news Twitter account. Over the years Josh has gained mass exposure from his aerial photography work and spends his days writing drone content for DroneDJ as well as pursuing his business.