F1 can benefit from 4K video: Red Bull Racing

Racing team is already looking into the possibilities of the improved video format

Red Bull Racing is interested in the possibilities presented by 4K video.

Technical partnerships head, Alan Peasland, said the racing team is already looking at what benefits 4K can bring.

For one the increased resolution allows the team staff to do more split screening at their terminals.

“We can have more feeds in the operations room we have and have high definition in those smaller feeds,” he said.

Red Bull Racing already relies on HD video by TV broadcasters for footage from the race track, which it then analyses for improvements to the vehicle’s performance.

“The video shows how the car is performing, how much it is bouncing on the curb,” Peasland said.

“We can also watch the car go on the same turn on the next lap and compare the changes we’ve made.”

Added detail

The high resolution of HD means the racing team is able to scrutinise the F1 car in detail, particularly through close-ups and slow motion.

4K comes with an even higher resolution, though Peasland said that level of minute detail is not a big factor for the team.

“It’s more using what we’re seeing on the screen and being able to compare that to our telemetry,” he said.

“It enables us to compare that the lap times and the way the vehicle is performing on track to see how it is all coming together.”

Once 4K becomes more widely available, Peasland said the technology has the potential to be more of a support tool than anything else.

“4K is definitely something we’re looking at, as we would be foolish not to,” he said.

“We look at every bit of technology and innovation we can in all areas.”

Tracking the competition

A lot of the analysis of the footage takes place the Red Bull Racing facility in the UK and not at the race track.

As the footage is often public domain, Peasland said the team gathers and analyses every bit of footage they can get.

“We want to understand as much as possible about the car and include it in our strategy,” he said.

Peasland adds that they are not the only team to take advantage of the digital broadcasts and other teams are doing the same.

The broadcasts are also a good way to see what the competition is doing with its vehicles.

“You sometimes spot something cool on the competitor’s car, though by the time you have understood it and put it on your own car, it’s several races down the line and you’ve missed your chance to turn that into an advantage,” he said.

Patrick Budmar covers consumer and enterprise technology breaking news for IDG Communications. Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_budmar.

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