Get to know Team AirVuz FPV Pilot Paul Nurkkala on this episode of Behind The Goggles! Hear nurkfpv dive into the story behind Flight of the Year, what it's like being a DRL pilot, and what his sport means to him. VIDEO TRANSCRIPT: Kendall Mark - He won the 2017 FPV Drone Video of the Year award, is a top DRL pilot, and has won awards for his cinematic flight skills. Paul Nurkkala is not your average pilot and his feelings about the sport he loves run much deeper than what you may expect. Paul - "For me, FPV is more than that acronym, to me it describes this entire culture, this entire people or group. I like to talk about the FPV culture as this group of crazy, fanatical, excited people that all bond over this shared passion. What really happens when you put a bunch of people into one spot and tell them, 'ok go do that thing together' people become fast friends. You don't need to speak the same language with someone, but you and someone else share this deep intimate connection. You both can fly, that instantly creates this bond across people spanning the globe. So what does FPV mean to me? Sure, yes it means first person view or whatever. But what it really means to me is this innate, deep, human connection with people that span the globe. Drones went from a tiny toy that my in-laws got me for Christmas, to a hobby, to a passion, and now bordering on making it a living. The power that they have to give the world a new perspective on things is consuming to me. Whether that's racing, that's freestyle, that's doing cinematic sorts of shots, that all comes together to bring this powerful narrative, this powerful content that makes people stop and look. That's what I want to continue doing as long as I can." Paul - "I've built the NURK brand around telling the story of FPV. Sure, there's a lot of flying, but there's building, there's learning, there's training, there's struggling, there's finances, there's going to your wife and asking if you can spend a little more money. All of that creates this narrative that is FPV and to be able to express that in this brand and live it every day is a dream come true." Kendall - HIS VIDEO, "NURK'S FLIGHT OF THE YEAR" HAS GAINED INTERNATIONAL RECOGNITION. WHAT WAS IT LIKE FLYING AROUND THE TRAIN? Paul - "I've been asked several times what it feels like to fly inside or around the train and to be honest, I can't remember. I kind of black out at that point - I was more like, 'uh let's try and get everything back,' and so going inside of the train car at the end of the video - a lot of people ask, 'did you have to suddenly correct,' and I just don't remember. I completely blanked out. At that point, my battery was running kind of low so I just chickened out and brought it back and landed." Kendall - PAUL MAY NOT REMEMBER THE FLIGHT, BUT HE DOES KNOW WHY HE WAS SUCCESSFUL - A COMBINATION OF COMFORT AND CONTROL Paul - "I think one of the core aspects of being good at FPV is being comfortable flying wherever you are. Whether you're going from indoors to outdoors, from an open space to a tight space, you're comfortable the whole time. So, everything feels the same and the more in control you are the better your footage is going to be." Kendall - KNOWN FOR BOTH HIS FREESTYLE AND RACING SKILLS, PAUL SAYS HIS FLYING STYLES ARE VERY DIFFERENT BETWEEN THE TWO GENRES. Paul - "Freestyle Nurk - well most people would accuse me of being really, really kind of sickening. It's not exactly the most fun to watch because I'm no exactly the smoothest person. I'm not Juicy J Johnny, or Smooth Skitzo, or whatever. My style is I wanna make you freak out, ya know? Every time I take off, I wanna be hitting that gap, I want to be nailing that combo that just makes you go 'ooooo' ya know? That's fun, that's where I like to be. In terms of racing my style ends up being a little more conservative than that. I know I will win if I don't crash. Another way to say it is if I don't crash, I have an opportunity to win. If I go up, fly and immediately crash into the ground there's no chance for me to win the race. But, if I make sure I'm consistent, conservative, and take calculated risks when I need to - I think that is my style in racing." Kendall - PAUL'S CLEARLY PASSIONATE ABOUT FPV - WHAT WOULD THE FORMER PROGRAMMER DO IF HE COULDN'T FLY ANYMORE? Paul - "I'd be lost, right? I've spent three years creating the NURK brand and developing my skills as a racing pilot. Taking podiums, taking home wins, and being a part of this culture. If you said, 'nope you can't do it anymore,' I don't know where I would be. If I wasn't allowed to fly anymore, I would probably be filming people flying. There's no doubt that I want to be a part of the video, a part of the FPV culture, and no matter what that I'm continuing to tell the stories of these people I care about so much." Paul - "I want to go back to that definition of FPV. When you're out flying, when you're joining friends, when you're going out to events - I'm talking to you, you right here - the pilots that are experiencing this culture, these people, I want you to remember that you have this powerful, this shared human connection. These people care about you more than you know because you play with these expensive toys together. When you're flying, when you're flying together, just remember that you have the opportunity to connect with someone deeper than many people struggle to achieve their entire lives and I think that is going to be the most rewarding part of FPV that you can achieve. So I want you to go out, I want you to experience the world of FPV, the culture of FPV, be a part of it behind the goggles, and just be a part of that culture. Go out and fly."