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DATEV Challenge Roth introduces RaceRanger in 2024

From 2024 DATEV Challenge Roth will use an innovative technical distance measurement tool on the bike course for the professional athletes. As part of a long-term co-operation, the “RaceRanger” system, will build on the event’s efforts to improve fairness of racing and transparency of officiating.

RaceRanger was developed in New Zealand and has been used successfully at several competitions in 2023 with Challenge Wanaka one of the first races to use it in it trial stages.

Transparent and reliable information about possible slipstream offences

The current RaceRanger system consists of two lightweight devices, each equipped with distance sensors to accurately measure the distance between riders. One is attached to front forks of the bike, the other to the rear of the seat post. The rear devices have three coloured LED lights, which change colour and flash-pattern as the distance changes. They give the following rider an accurate indication of the distance to the rider in front.  RaceRanger removes any subjective guessing by both athletes and referees when it comes to the draft distances.

Support for race judges

Roth race director, Felix Walchshöfer, is looking forward to the cooperation and the use in the race: “Our goal is always to make the race even fairer. RaceRanger is a technical revolution. It supports our race judges in determining the drafting distances in a completely objective way. They can now see at a glance if an athlete is too close to the person in front. The system is also a great support for the athletes themselves to better assess their own following distances.”

Sebastian Kienle: Objective technical instance “extremely valuable”

For Sebastian Kienle, too, the introduction of the system is an absolute benefit: “I myself was at the start in the first races in which the system was used. To have an objective technical authority that helps both the athletes and the judges to observe and monitor the slipstream rule is extremely valuable, especially in the context of the ever-increasing power density. It is very welcome that Challenge Roth, as one of the most prestigious races, takes a leading role here and gives judges, athletes and the developers of the system the opportunity to gain experience and further develop the system. My experience in the three races I have started with the system has been consistently positive.”

The technical innovation was founded by two former professional triathletes from New Zealand; James Elvery and Dylan McNeice. RaceRanger co-founder and CEO, James Elvery, comments; “We are super excited to make our first race announcement for 2024 at Challenge Roth, one of the biggest races on the planet. Over the past 30 years, Felix, his family, and team have built this iconic race by listening closely to the needs of their athletes and constantly innovating. We look forward to bringing RaceRanger to this monument of the triathlon calendar, and working with the team to continue to improve the fairness of racing in our sport into the future.”

Already in the past, TEAMCHALLENGE, as organiser of DATEV Challenge Roth, has repeatedly shown itself to be a pioneer in taking measures to increase fairness and safety on the course. in 2023 the number of media and referee motorbikes was significantly reduced, and the communication and briefings between the referees and pro athletes were improved.