Telecast Fiber Systems and Inertia Unlimited Provide Gopher Cam to NASCAR Fans

At the recent running of the Daytona 500, Telecast Fiber
Systems’ HD POV fiber optic video/data transceiver modules
helped to give NASCAR enthusiasts a unique “gopher’s-eye view” of the
action at track level. The HD POV system provides the signal transport
component for the “Gopher Cam,” a specialized remote-camera system
developed by Inertia Unlimited and commissioned by FOX Sports and NASCAR Media
Group for coverage of several NASCAR auto race events.

The Gopher Cam is a groundbreaking new system of four HD cameras that are
buried below the asphalt track surface at key NASCAR race venues. The Gopher
Cam provides a camera angle that is unparalleled in auto racing coverage,
giving viewers an exciting view of the cars zooming around the turns at
track-surface level — complete with screeching tires and roaring sound.
Following its debut at Daytona, the Gopher Cam was used to cover the NASCAR
races in Las Vegas, Atlanta,
Bristol, Tenn.

“The Gopher Cam provides one of the most unique and compelling camera
angles ever seen in sports television, and it really demonstrates the speed and
power of the cars,” said Michael Davies, director of field operations for
FOX Sports. “It would not be possible without the Telecast gear, which enables
us to span the sheer distances involved with no loss in signal

A component of Telecast’s Viper II family of modular fiber optic platforms, the
HD POV system carries HD video, audio, and data signals from the Gopher Cams
over the NASCAR venue’s existing fiber ring. Through bidirectional transmission
of data, FOX Sports video engineers are able to control the cameras’ paint
functions and iris settings remotely. “Camera control is a critical
component of the Gopher Cam, and the Telecast HD POV system gives us the data
transport we need to ensure that the remote signal matches the HD quality of
all of our other cameras,” said Davies.

“When we began development of the Gopher Cam system, Telecast Fiber
Systems was the obvious choice to provide the signal transport component,”
said Jeff Silverman, founder and owner of Inertia Unlimited. “Not only is
there a great deal of Telecast equipment already installed on-site at many
sports venues, but we knew HD POV system would provide the flexibility and high
quality that would help the Gopher Cam exceed FOX Sports’

“Inertia Unlimited is precisely the type of customer for which our fiber
equipment was designed — a company that is pushing the envelope and delivering
truly cutting-edge solutions for covering all types of events in new and
exciting ways,” said Eugene Baker, vice president and CTO, Telecast Fiber
Systems. “We designed our systems to be as generic as possible so they
could be applied in a wide variety of specialized systems such as the Gopher
Cam. We’re excited to be a part of this innovative broadcasting advance.”

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