MotoGP: Breaking the Barrier Between Sport and Spectator

A new MotoGP tire detection technology will let fans and media see what tire type riders are sporting, but what other technologies could be implemented to bring the fans closer to the action?

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The Grand Prix Commission has recently announced that there’ll be some upcoming changes to the MotoGP tire rulings. Chiefly among them is tech that allows fans and the media to instantly obtain information regarding what sort of tire type their rider in question is using. The tech functions by wireless transmission and the Commission doesn’t go too much into the nitty-gritty, but this implementation does draw light to the relationship between sport and viewer base.

I don’t believe there’s a single soul that says Motorsport viewers aren’t a passionate bunch. We get that it’s a sport – a game. There are fixed rules, teams, personalities, and year after year of the best-of-the-best striving to outperform one another. Yet for all the various points of interest within the sport, the role of the observer is relegated to pretty much just that: observing. Don’t misunderstand, it’s not that it isn’t exciting, but there are potentially multiple technologies that could be implemented to heighten the experience of the spectatorship.

HOHENSTEIN-ERNSTTHAL, SAXONY - JULY 17:  Luca Marini of Italy and Forward Team   leads the field during the Moto2 race during the MotoGp of Germany - Race at Sachsenring Circuit on July 17, 2016 in Hohenstein-Ernstthal, Germany.  (Photo by Mirco Lazzari gp/Getty Images)
HOHENSTEIN-ERNSTTHAL, SAXONY – JULY 17: Luca Marini of Italy and Forward Team leads the field during the Moto2 race during the MotoGp of Germany – Race at Sachsenring Circuit on July 17, 2016 in Hohenstein-Ernstthal, Germany. (Photo by Mirco Lazzari gp/Getty Images)

This small addition does its job of bringing information that was difficult to obtain to light, and therefore making the viewer feel more privy to the inner workings of the team and their strategy – but it’s only a small step towards making viewing the sport more engaging. We did see F1 award a tech demo for VR headsets that allowed users to “walk” around on track, but who knows how long it’ll be until we see that implemented.

The point is this: Motorsports offer one hell of a ride to the spectator, but metrics only make one portion of the crowd excited. What we need to see more of is transparency and an open mind when it comes to disrupting the traditional relationship between performers and spectators. Adopting that, many Motorsports the world over could usher in a new era for experiencing adrenaline-fueled racing.

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