Saudi students race drones in run-up to DRL World Championship final

A group of 16 Saudi students competed in their own race after attending a two-day training workshop on building, programming and flying drones. (SFCSPD)
Updated 14 September 2018
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Saudi students race drones in run-up to DRL World Championship final

  • The final event of this year’s DRL championship will held on September 14
  • The federation is working to introduce regulations that will help to overcome obstacles to Saudis interested in taking up drone racing

JEDDAH: As Saudi Arabia prepares to host the grand finale of the 2018 Drone Racing League Allianz World Championship, some lucky young locals got a taste of the sport’s speed and thrills, while also learning about the technology behind it.
The seventh and final event of this year’s DRL championship will be hosted by the Saudi Federation for Cyber Security, Programming and Drones (SFCSPD) at King Abdullah Economic City in Jeddah on September 14, where 10 of the world’s best drone racers will compete to be crowned world champion
Before the big race, a group of 16 Saudi students competed in their own race after attending a two-day training workshop on building, programming and flying drones, which was supervised by the DRL World Team. The participants used simulation software to learn how to control the aircraft and then got to fly the latest, state-of-the-art Racer 3 drones.
One of the participants, Mutaz Abdullah Al-Jaafari said he was pleased to have the chance to take part because it was a national event that encouraged, supported and motivated young people to get involved in the sport.
DRL fans around the world are looking forward to the final of the 2018 World Championship, which this year comes to Saudi Arabia for the first time. It is hosted by the SFCSPD, with the support of Saud Al-Qahtani, the chairman of the federation and an adviser to the Royal Court.
Nouf Al-Rakan, the federation’s executive director, said the event is in line with realizing the Kingdom’s Vision 2030 and reflects the country’s regional and international leadership in the areas of technology and sports. She added that the federation is working to introduce legislation and regulations that will help to overcome obstacles to Saudis who are interested in taking up drone racing. She said it is also pleased to play a role in introducing this modern sport to Saudi society and attracting international events, and hopes to host more international competitions and support citizens keen to participate in the sport.
Al-Rakan also expressed her pride in the young people who took part in the workshops, praising their enthusiasm and skill in helping to build a model drone that will be used in the final race.
The race in Jeddah on September 14 is the seventh and the final event in the 2018 DRL Allianz World Championship, after qualifying rounds in the United States, France and Germany. Free tickets to attend the event are available online from the SFCSPD.

 


Saudi Arabia’s KSRelief chief meets UN humanitarian coordinator for Yemen

Updated 41 sec ago
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Saudi Arabia’s KSRelief chief meets UN humanitarian coordinator for Yemen

JEDDAH: Dr. Abdullah Al-Rabeeah, general supervisor of the King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Center (KSRelief), met on Saturday with Lise Grande, the UN’s humanitarian coordinator for Yemen, at the center’s headquarters in Riyadh.
They discussed means of cooperating and providing support to the mechanism of humanitarian and relief work in Yemen.
They also reviewed operations taking place on the ground, as well as subjects of common interest.
Al-Rabeeah showcased the humanitarian assistance provided by KSRelief in Yemen, and the 321 projects it has implemented there so far.
Topics discussed included the $500 million grant from Saudi Arabia and the UAE to the UN “to alleviate the suffering of the brotherly Yemeni people in 2018,” he said.
“We also examined the mechanism ensuring that humanitarian assistance reaches all Yemenis without exception,” he added.
“The meeting looked into ways to avoid Houthi violations when it comes to humanitarian aid, especially those related to the looting of aid provided by the World Food Programme (WFP),” Al-Rabeeah said, adding that they discussed “our strategic partnership” in 2019 and alleviating the famine in Yemen.
Grande said the meeting was of great importance, adding: “It discussed the famine in Yemen, possible solutions, and how to provide rapid assistance to the Yemeni people.”
She said: “The Kingdom’s contribution through KSRelief is crucial. The center provided us with tips on how to put an end to the famine in Yemen.”
She added: “We have to help Yemeni families so they can have a proper source of income. We seek to develop the work environment to facilitate the task for humanitarian workers.”
Grande stressed the importance of addressing all violations, and expressed her happiness at Yemeni officials agreeing to allow the WFP to use a fingerprint system to identify beneficiaries.