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15 year old wins $250K at World Drone Prix

A team led by a 15-year-old British teenager has scooped up $250,000 after winning in a major drone-racing tournament this weekend.

Acting as the drone's pilot for his team Tornado X-Blades Banni UK, teenager Luke Bannister managed to beat all other contenders in the track race at the World Drone Prix in Dubai, on Saturday.

In the finals, Tornado X-Blades Banni UK was up against three other teams, while groups from all over the globe including Dubai and Russia, took part. During the race, pilots would sit in racing-style seats and wear goggles in order to watch a feed, coming from a camera fixed on their team's drone.

The main objective of the race is to "navigate the aerial race track in the fastest possible time incurring as few penalties as possible," according to the World Organization of Racing Drones' rules and regulations on the event.

During the race, racers had to include at least one pit stop, while choosing which paths — including a mandatory pass through "Joker Lane" — and possible short cuts to take. The main racing track length was 591 meters long, according to event's site and each racer had to complete 12 laps.

Organized by the World Organization of Racing Drones, the World Drone Prix was hosted for the first time this year in Dubai. The organization and racing event chose Dubai, claiming online that it was the "first city in the world to embrace drone technology to serve humanity."

A drone flies around the track in front of the Dubai's Marina skyline, during the World Drone Prix drone racing championship in Dubai.
Razan Alzayani | Bloomberg | Getty Images
A drone flies around the track in front of the Dubai's Marina skyline, during the World Drone Prix drone racing championship in Dubai.

At the event, it gave the United Arab Emirates' city the opportunity to announce the start of the "World Future Sports Games" which is expected to commence in December 2017. Those competitions are expected to include "robotic swimming, running, wrestling and car racing" on top of drone racing, according to the Associated Press.

The $250,000 prize was the highest single-paid prize out of the $1 million — including runner up prizes — given out over last Friday and Saturday. Bannister's prize is expected to be shared across the 43 members of his extended team, Bannister's team manager, Nigel Tomlinson told the Associated Press.

Bannister took to Facebook following the win, saying thank you to everyone involved in the "awesome trip" and who had supported him from the start.

Tornado X-Blades Banni UK weren't the only winners, with several teams taking awards home, from the fastest lap award, to who was the best team.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.