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Tata Communications calls on fans to design F1 prediction tool

18 Aug 2015

Tata Communications today announces the second challenge of the 2015 F1® Connectivity Innovation Prize. The goal of the contest with its USD $50,000 prize is to inspire the brightest minds around the world to harness their ingenuity, technical know-how and passion for F1 racing to engage fans in the sport through two technology challenges.

In a sport where success is defined by the ability to adapt quickly as circumstances change, drivers receive crucial support from their teams’ ability to make decisions based on data-driven predictive analytics. The second and final challenge aims to show how fans can be engaged at the very heart of F1 racing. Set by Formula One Management, the challenge is to design a prediction tool that asks F1 followers to forecast how each Grand Prix will unfold, and to submit their predictions for each driver and team for evaluation. The tool should also enable Formula One Management to rank the predictions and reward the fans that forecast the most accurate outcomes.

John Morrison, Chief Technical Officer of Formula One Management, says, “Each Grand Prix weekend, fans are glued to their TVs to see how drivers and teams respond to changing circumstances such as adverse weather conditions or an unexpected safety car deployment. With this challenge, we are asking entrants to create a platform where F1 followers can use practice data and their knowledge of the sport to predict how the story of each race will play out and who will emerge as the winner.”

Julie Woods-Moss, Chief Marketing Officer and CEO of NextGen Business at Tata Communications, says, “The way we watch sports has changed for good - people want to be more engaged, sharing their own commentary via social media and using different devices to follow multiple video feeds and build their own picture of the action. The second challenge of the F1 Connectivity Innovation Prize is about finding new techniques for fans to experience and engage with the sport. We had a remarkable response to the first challenge, and I encourage technical visionaries and creative minds around the world to take part in the final challenge to shape innovation in F1.”

Martin Brundle, former Formula One race driver and F1 commentator for Sky Sports F1, says, “In addition to bringing existing die-hard F1 fans closer to the sport, a predictive analysis tool would also open up new possibilities on how the sport could evolve and attract new followers in the future. This challenge has incredible potential and I’m looking forward to being a part of the judging panel.”

The first challenge of the F1 Connectivity Innovation prize, set by the Mercedes AMG Petronas Formula One Team, was to design a new approach for displaying critical race car telemetry and sensor data to enable engineers at the race track and at the factory in the UK to make more accurate decisions through real-time data visualisation. The winning entries came from the UK, Spain and Australia.

Each entry will be evaluated by a judging panel of drivers and F1 technologists including John Morrison, Chief Technical Officer of Formula One Management; Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes Amg Petronas Formula One Team race driver; Paddy Lowe, Executive Director (Technical) of the Mercedes AMG Petronas Formula One Team; David Coulthard, former Formula One race driver and F1 commentator; and Martin Brundle, former Formula One race driver and F1 commentator. They are joined by Mehul Kapadia, Managing Director of F1 Business at Tata Communications.

The deadline for entries for the second challenge is Tuesday September 8th 2015 at 5:00pm BST (GMT +1). A full brief can be downloaded from the F1 Connectivity Innovation Prize website. To hear more about the challenge, see this video featuring Martin Brundle.

The Grand Prize of the F1 Connectivity Innovation Prize is a cheque for $50,000 and a bespoke trophy, to be presented to the winner (or winning team) at the end of the season in November. Additional prizes will include VIP trips to the final of the 2015 FIA Formula One World Championship, the 2015 Formula 1 Etihad Airways Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.

Tata Communications is the Official Connectivity Provider of Formula 1, enabling the sport to seamlessly reach out to its tens of millions of fans across the globe.