FIA has announced a new timing partner for the coming season from the earlier long time partner to the Spanish, Sistemas Integrales de Telecomunicación. Simon de Banke was the owner of the 'de Banke' group of companies of which Stage1Tech was one of it.
In their press release, FIA has only mentioned the merits of the new provider and has not given any reason for the exiting of the proven and consistent existing provider, S1T. Hope the move is for good and nothing has cooked bad, 'behind the scenes'. When 'Stage1Tech' released the video of their involvement in the sports had hinted about the long happening in the inside, but was not conclusive enough. Hope! Hope is all that we can do, as the new company not only boasts of having a larger head-count, but also its own fleet of aircrafts to do the job. And its pretty obvious all of these definitely does not come for free!
Stage 1 was there and had given us what we would have wanted, those live feeds, updates from ground zero and has definitely done it without any drama. Even as recently when the promoters were falling out, it was this team who held on without a single spell or murmur. Atleast FIA should have had given them the credit of what they had managed so far, and not just tell us wonders of what the new team / company is capable of.
The media release from FIA goes as below,
"The FIA has entered into exclusive negotiations with Sistemas Integrales de Telecomunicación to provide the timing and safety tracking services for the FIA World Rally Championship from 2013. The Spanish sports technology group would also be responsible for delivering this all-important data to the Championship Promoter, the content being an integral part of its vision to develop and enhance the television and digital product.
Based in Madrid, Sistemas Integrales de Telecomunicación has 78 employees dedicated to providing high-level technology across a broad range of sports. With its own fleet of seven airplanes and eight helicopters, the company’s experience in delivering rally-related expertise dates back to 1985. Its various telecommunications technology, timing, tracking, results, broadcast transmission and real-time internet services have since been used on the Spanish Rally Championship, Rally Cataluña, Rally de Portugal, Baja España, the Race of Champions and La Vuelta a España, a multi-stage cycling event which is part of the UCI World Tour. The company is also the exclusive Tag Heuer Timing representative for Spain since 1992.
Sistemas Integrales de Telecomunicación will use proven UHF radio wave technology, familiar within the World Rally Championship and frequently used for television broadcast purposes."
So the question is whether the decision is of the new promoter Red Bull to have it changed or of the fed? Again! Hoping it is for the well-being and functioning of the sport & nothing else..