The British Touring Car Championship saw a wind of change sweep through the series in 2020. Whilst the pandemic turned the year on its head and delivered us a season the likes of which we’ve never seen before, new teams and new partnerships were forged along the way.
As MB Motorsport accelerated by Blue Square prepared for their maiden season in the championship, lockdowns, postponements and Zoom calls were nowhere near the top of the team’s to-do list. With the world changing around them, the way they operated had to adapt as well.
When it became increasingly clear that traditional hospitality wouldn’t be possible in a COVID-secure environment, the team set about a daring plan to take their team virtual and bring partners and fans to the heart of the action all from the comfort and safety of their own homes.
Creating a bespoke virtual hospitality platform complete with live streams, interviews and behind-the-scenes access meant they could offer a unique experience to those watching from afar but it required a reliable network infrastructure to run smoothly across every far flung corner of the UK.
“Once we had the idea for the platform, it then became a case of sourcing how we could make it a reality,” explains MB Motorsport accelerated by Blue Square Sporting Director, Mark Blundell.
“The sheer horsepower required to achieve what we wanted made it a tall order but with all of their experience and expertise, we knew RoamingExpert could deliver us exactly what we wanted. They were more a partner to the whole programme than just a service provider. They were involved in every conversation from day one and played a huge role in bringing it to life.
“Streaming live footage, Q&A’s and much more directly into the homes of our virtual guests meant we needed a super quick and stable connection to make sure the user experience was right up there. The team at RoamingExpert were excellent in understanding what we needed, putting together a service that worked without fail and being at the end of the phone whenever we needed them across every weekend.”
From the open airfields of Thruxton and Silverstone to the Scottish hills of Knockhill, the team needed a fast and reliable internet connection to run their platform wherever they were in the country.
“Our TaG WiFi solution was the perfect product for their needs,” RoamingExpert Managing Director Mark Pattman adds. “From our initial conversations, we knew exactly what they wanted and had everything we needed to help deliver it for them.”
Tapping into LTE networks around the world, the Truck and Garage (TaG) WiFi solution allowed the team to set up at every track and access an efficient and reliable network.
“With so much happening in a single day in the BTCC, it was vital that our team could edit, produce and upload content as quickly as possible,” Blundell said. “It meant we could react to events and tell the story of the weekend with minimal delay and that elevated our platform even further.
“Once we set the equipment up, the RoamingExpert team were able to remotely optimise all the settings of our TaG system to ensure we were reaching the highest speeds possible. I’m a big believer in the success that partnerships can bring so it’s been a real delight to work with Mark and his team, their support has been invaluable to us as we set about our plans and we look forward to continuing that in 2021.”
Through their virtual hospitality platform, MB Motorsport accelerated by Blue Square were able to host more than 300 guests in any given weekend, highlighting the importance of interconnectivity and innovation, two ideas that Mark Pattman is passionate about.
“At RoamingExpert, we’re all about being at the cutting edge of development and technology,” Pattman adds. “The past 12 months has forced all of us to innovate and adapt in a way we’ve never seen before, all through the power of mobile communication.
“To see MB Motorsport use our services and products to deliver something truly unique and uplifting for so many people through these difficult times has been a real privilege and demonstrates exactly what’s possible through collaboration.”