AR Air Racing Takes Flight Over The Streets Of Shibuya

Estimated read time 5 min read

Air Race X and STYLE partner to deliver a “5-dimensional motorsport experience” to racing fans.

Air Race X is a revolutionary new racing format that puts a fresh spin on traditional aircraft racing by combining actual flight with the latest digital technology, resulting in a unique competitive experience, unlike anything we’ve seen to date.

Eight real-life daredevil pilots from different countries will participate in the Air Race X event, which includes hotshot superstar pilots such as Japan’s Yoshihide Muroya, Australia’s Matt Hall, and Canada’s Pete McLeod.  

Each pilot will fly actual airplanes designed specifically for racing, and thanks to the STYLY augmented reality (AR) platform, you’ll be able to immerse yourself in high-speed roll, pitch, and yaw.

During the Digital Round, the pilots’ flight/race data will be collected using navigation tools. This data will then be used to create a visual representation of their actions. Using the STYLY app, which is available for Android and iOS, spectators can watch virtual renditions of each pilot as they fly through the streets of Shibuya.

The race itself will be broadcasted online around the world so anyone can join in on the action.

The inaugural event kicks off the first weekend of August 2023 and will be followed by a six-day event in the fall during which pilots will compete in a round-robin qualifier called a “Digital Round.” The final tournament will take place on October 15, 2023, in Shibuya.

Through its partnership with Air Race X, STYLY is changing the game of spectator sports by allowing fans from different parts of the world to experience the excitement via their smartphones.

Credit: Air Race X

During an interview with VRScout, Miriam Arbus, Global Partnership Lead for STYLY, said, “With responsive occlusion coded into STYLY’s AR application, virtual planes will fly at speeds of 440km/h through Shibuya, maneuvering around buildings and competing for fastest race times.” Arbus adds, “The AR flight paths are synced with the live physical race program taking place at various locations globally.”

We’ve seen other sporting events use AR to bring their fans closer to the game, such as ARound’s stadium-wide immersive experiences. That said, Air Race X promises a brand new type of immersive experience, something organizers call the “5-dimensional motorsports experience.”

“We are delighted to hear that Air Race X will be held in Shibuya for the first time in the world and are delighted that this wonderful event will be held in harmony with the energy of the city,” said Ken Hasebe, Mayor of Shibuya, Tokyo.

“I sincerely hope that this event will be an opportunity to experience the power and speed of aircraft up close in Shibuya, and to positively welcome the excitement and vitality that this event will bring to Shibuya as a new type of sports entertainment that combines the real and virtual, and to further enhance the appeal of the area.”

Credit: Air Race X

How Does it All Work?

Pilots accumulate championship points in eleven digital rounds by flying their finely-tuned aircraft through air gates following a predetermined race configuration. The pilot with the fastest time wins up to 25 points.


The racecourse for the digital round is created by measuring the exact position and spacing where each pilot will fly. The latest sensing technology is used to measure all flight details, and the flight data is collected and analyzed by the competition headquarters. This data is then used for the competition and to deliver the 5-dimensional AR race experience to the fans.

Credit: Air Race X

Qualifying (6 days)

Each Air Race X pilot will compete against one other in a round-robin format, where they will collect points based on performance. 

During the qualifying period, pilots can participate in various practices in the race area to improve their skills. Doing so allows them to fly at a higher level and can help them become more competitive.

The top four pilots will then advance to the final tournament.

Final Tournament

During the finals, the top four qualifying pilots will race each other in a timed trial with the top two pilots moving on to the final race where only one pilot will be named Air Race X Champion!

Credit: Air Race X

Watching Through AR

At the spectator site, a digital version of each final-four aircraft will be reproduced using STYLY’s AR technology. To view the race you simply watch through your smart device where you will be able to view each aircraft zip through the city skyline as a super cool AR experience.

“STYLY’s involvement in the upcoming Air Race X brings a true mixed-reality experience into our present reality, offering more access to audiences who are no longer bound by physical or geographical limitations,” said Arbus. “STYLY’s AR technology offers an easy-to-use and powerful platform for smartphones that is accessible to Air Race X fans around the world.”

To learn more about Air Race X visit here.

Feature Image Credit: Air Race X


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