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Blockchain and the unchangeable face of motorsport

FROM the first competitive race in the early 19th century, motorsport has become one of the most popular sports in the world; attracting millions of fans from more than 194 countries seeking to benefit from the exhilarating emotional experience of the track. However, despite its popularity and the progress of the various technologies affecting various sports, motor racing has remained essentially unchanged in the way they are experienced and commercialized.

While most sports have embraced various technologies that make competitions more accurate and accurate – such as video assistant (VAR) and Hawk-Eye technology – others are now evaluating ways they can use technology to transform the way in which the fans interact and interact with the activity.

It could be argued that betting apps were one of the first iterations of this transformation; making it more accessible to fans to place bets on their favorite teams. Now, these sports look to the next phase of this transformation.

Times like football, basketball and even F1 have benefited from a technological facelift in the form of e-sport; changing the way fans interact with sports and allowing them to experience the adrenaline of the competition. Moreover, rather than the technology avoided or remaining disconnected from the traditional governing bodies that oversee this sport, the Premier League has embraced this change with the imminent launch of its ePremier League in January 2019.

Furthermore, technologies such as augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) have revolutionized the way in which the public watches and engages with sport. By allowing fans completely engaging experiences, these technologies have already established themselves in recent years.

However, in terms of the technological revolution, it seems that car races are still lagging behind with an apparent lack of a unified platform for the racing community that allows fans to connect. This, combined with an often expensive technology that smaller teams are not able to afford and a limited exposure for those teams, has left a dazzling abandonment in the modern automotive industry that is becoming increasingly isolated for the general community. However, there is an opportunity for blockchain technology to transform industry and tackle some of the critical points in the industry.

What was once an order word, blockchain has established itself as a turning point for a range of industries including finance, supply chain and health care. So, could it be the technological revolution that the automotive industry needed?

Blockchain technology rotates heavily around data; in particular how these data are stored, shared and protected using the latest encryption technologies. So once the information is written it is practically impossible to modify it. This is what can be done with what could lead to a new era in motor racing.

Firstly, the use of the blockchain represents an opportunity to build a global community of runners and hobby enthusiasts who currently do not exist in the industry. Similar to the Premier League app that connects football fans and allows them to create their own fantasy league to compete against their friends, motor racing has the opportunity to connect the global racing community using technology blockchain.

It's no secret that car racing is not an inexpensive hobby. Not only can it be expensive for fans to participate in competitions, but also for hobby runners, who are often burdened by licensing fees, event entries and vehicle maintenance. Therefore, the blockchain could be used as a way to provide multiple paths to generate financial support. Blockchain technology is still strongly associated with finance and can be used as a means of funding or even corporate sponsorship.

Furthermore, motor racing is constrained by geographical restrictions, unlike many other sports. For example, there are over 130 football stadiums in the UK alone. If we compare this with the number of circuits, which is about 70, not all can accommodate all forms of motor racing, the restrictions for fans and hobbyists become evident.

Currently, if riders want to compete with each other, they must be in the same position at the same time. However, by combining motorsport with blockchain technology, the industry has the opportunity to offer "ghost races" in which two or more drivers can compete regardless of location or time zone. By installing sensors on tracks and cars, data can be collected while drivers drive on the track analyzing various aspects including time, track conditions and time. Once these data have been collected, they can be compared to a driver in another position to run against the time set using similar parameters.

The global car racing market currently has a value of $ 5 billion + with a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 8% for the next 3 years. However, for a sector that has such a high monetary value, on the whole it is struggling to keep up with those who have so quickly embraced new technologies to provide fans with new ways to interact and experience their favorite pastimes. Blockchain technology could be a way to offer a completely new experience to racing enthusiasts and riders.

Failing to embrace the new technologies, even motor racing could unintentionally close the door to further business opportunities and, with the abandonment of other circuits, is not able to turn away from these opportunities.

Article by Joachim C. Baron von Behr-Baerwald, CEO of RaceCoin

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