A reliable communication system plays a critical role in the organising of fast-paced events held across a wide area. When Tampere-based motorsports club PR-Racing needed a secure and reliable communication system for a rally event celebrating its 40th anniversary, it turned to Senop Communications (formerly Virve Tuotteet ja Palvelut Oy). The VIRVE handsets leased for the rally ensured good signal strength and coverage.
Whatever the event, the last couple of weeks leading up to the big day are always hectic. Knowing that at least the communication system works as intended is a weight off the organisers’ shoulders. Tampere-based motorsports club PR-Racing experienced this first hand when it began to plan its 40th anniversary race.
“A reliable communication system makes event coordination easier and ensures fast access to help in the event of an accident. The organisers not being able to communicate with each other is not an option.”Jussi Koskinen, PR-Racing
“Even if everything goes exactly to plan, we need an efficient communication system for the Autoglym Rally Finland. A reliable communication system makes event coordination easier and ensures fast access to help in the event of an accident. The organisers not being able to communicate with each other is not an option”, says PR-Racing’s Jussi Koskinen, Route Safety Officer and Assistant Race Director for the Autoglym Rally Finland.
“We never really had any other options. We probably would have just used mobile telephones if we did not have the VIRVE handsets, but this solution was much better. The system worked like a dream”, Koskinen says.
The route of the rally was more than 200 kilometres long and covered a wide area in Kangasala and neighbouring municipalities. No mobile network had coverage across the whole area.
Talk groups set up in advance
Senop Communications configured a number of designated channels and talk groups for the event organisers. This allowed the organisers to communicate simultaneously with several people belonging to the same talk group.
The communication system for the Autoglym Rally Finland was designed to allow a stationary race control centre to communicate with the mobile units involved in the event, such as the racers, the lead car and the safety car. The race control centre had to be able to contact the cars at any time. Marshals at the start and end of each special stage as well as along the route also had to be able to communicate with each other.
The start of each special stage was attended by fire and rescue personnel and often an ambulance. Had anything happened, the VIRVE handsets could also have been used to contact the authorities.
“The VIRVE network is extremely reliable and we had complete confidence in the system, which was crucial. Having to fight with the communication system in the middle of a race is extremely frustrating”, Jussi Koskinen says.
Friendly customer service and state-of-the-art equipment
PR-Racing has decades of experience in organising races. At previous events the club has relied on conventional communication networks, which involves, among other things, erecting temporary radio masts. Both the setup before the event and the dismantling process after the race are labour-intensive and time-consuming.
“We used to have to kit the race vehicles with bulky equipment; this time we just handed out compact handsets. The handsets were delivered packed neatly into a case, which made distributing them to the users and recovering them afterwards a very smooth process. There were no delays on the morning of the event. The VIRVE handsets actually also worked out slightly cheaper than our previous solutions”, Koskinen says.
“Senop Communications has a friendly and helpful customer service team, and the equipment was top-notch. All the handsets worked faultlessly and the batteries lasted for the whole event”, he says.
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