Too-Low Drone On Rally Stage Gets What It Deserves

GIF via Remy Nice

Drones produce some cool aerial footage, but there’s a good reason why most racing events tell you to leave them at home. This is what happens when one flies directly into a car’s path on a World Rally Championship stage. It doesn’t end well for the drone.

Here’s Toyota WRC driver Esapekka Lappi taking Micky’s Jump on the Monte Lerno stage of this weekend’s Rally Italia Sardegna. Unfortunately, there’s a drone in the flying Finn’s way.


It’s a good thing Lappi is well-versed in the rally adage of “press on regardless.” If that drone had surprised him into making any sudden moves on this jump—where a lot of people were standing around watching—it could have ended with a lot worse than just a broken drone. That’s why they tell you to keep drones far, far away from the cars.

Needless to say, it’s pretty satisfying to see a drone get hit for being where it shouldn’t have been. My only regret is that the drone still managed to stay airborne after getting visibly broken by Lappi’s car.

Leave the cool close-up drone shots to the pros working with the series who’ve presumably been read the riot act on where it’s okay and not okay to film before getting released into the wilderness. Your quest for the perfect shot isn’t worth potentially ruining the rally for everybody.

[H/T oregonwings!]

Moderator, OppositeLock. Former Staff Writer, Jalopnik. 1984 "Porschelump" 944 race car, 1971 Volkswagen 411 race car, 2010 Mitsubishi Lancer GTS.



I’m not willing to discount the idea that it was actually an authorized drone for the event. An authorized “pro” is obviously a much more controlled risk but it’s still a new technology and people make mistakes. Hell, there was literally a situation in Montreal this weekend where photographers, pros authorized with passes to be there, had crept way too far out from behind the wall.

I believe a few years ago a major music artist slashed the fuck out of his finger interacting with a drone that also was “professionally” run by event staff. It’s still a new and developing phenomenon. People aren’t really fully used to it and its limits yet.