Production suite and live replay system makes its debut at Royal Ascot for RaceTech

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Evertz’s DreamCatcher production suite made its Royal Ascot debut this year when it was deployed by OB operator RaceTech to help televise the horse-racing event .

The production suite and live replay system was used for live production, archiving and VAR support for racecourse officials by RaceTech, which is owned by the British Racecourse Association and provides OB vehicles, cameras and crews to capture horse racing at venues around the UK.

In October 2018, RaceTech introduced DreamCatcher into six of its HD mobile control units and is now using Evertz technology on over 770 horse races each year.

At Royal Ascot, RaceTech delivered broadcast coverage to Sky Sports Racing, the Hong Kong Jockey Club and Ascot TV’s large screens at the racecourse. It also supported independent productions by bookmakers throughout the meeting and its feeds were made available to ITV Racing.

Two OB vehicles, both equipped with DreamCatcher, were used during the event, including OBX, RaceTech’s largest and latest vehicle that can seat a crew of 17 in two separate production areas and monitor up to 32 cameras.

Evertz DreamCatcher was used to record up to eight cameras per race across five days of racing. As well as being used for live production, DreamCatcher also played a VAR role as the Stewards Video Enquiry system, taking feeds from camera positions covering all angles including head on, side on, high level hoists, gantry cameras, drones and portable radio cameras, to ensure that races were legally adjudicated.

RaceTech media department manager Guy Fontaine said: “DreamCatcher’s ability to replay crystal clear Super Slow Motion without any stuttering was a key reason why we chose this system for our Outside Broadcast vehicles. DreamCatcher’s touch screen and quad split output to a 75” monitor allows racecourse stewards to view any split as full screen. It also offers features such as zoom, jog and slow motion so images can be closely scrutinised by officials in the event of any dispute or rule infringement.”

RaceTech worked closely with Evertz over a two year period to help develop DreamCatcher for the racing industry and it continues to provide feedback to the company’s R&D team in Canada.

Evertz UK director of sales and marketing Steve Hathaway said: “We are particularly pleased to be part of RaceTech’s productions with DreamCatcher and to enhance its operations and race coverage with high quality, simultaneous multi-channel HD recording and making content more easily accessible for replay and archiving.