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Supercars using fines to pay for new video technology

Supercars using fines to pay for new video technology
Apr 17, 2019, 9:56 PM

Supercars is using fines dished out to drivers and teams through its judicial system to fund the Hawk-Eye technology being used in race control this year.

The series first introduced the Hawk-Eye video analysis technology – famous for its use in cricket and tennis – at the season finale last year, before a wider implementation for 2019.

Allowing better analysis of available broadcast and on-board footage, the ultimate goal is keeping post-race investigations to a minimum.

Helping make the Hawk-Eye technology available to the Confederation of Australian Motor Sport officials is the CAMS fines account, which houses money collected from Supercars teams and drivers for race weekend infringements.

In a revealing interview on the latest Below the Bonnet podcast, Supercars CEO Sean Seamer explained how that fines account is funding Hawk-Eye, in a bid to funnel the cash back into the judicial process.

"Honestly, what we're doing with [the fines account] this year is we're using it to help fund the implementation of Hawk-Eye," said Seamer.

"The reason that I'm pushing Hawk-Eye so much is, because if I put my fan hat on, having the technology that enables us to settle any disputes or penalties in-race is really important.

"We're using [the fines] to put back into the sport and trying to make the sport better for fans."

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Seamer reckons the system is working as well, with the likes of deputy race director David Stuart and driving standards advisor Craig Baird racing about Hawk-Eye.

"Those guys are finding it really useful," he said. "You can start to overlay in-car and telemetry, and you can scrub back and forward and really see what's going on.

"I just got another email after Phillip Island going on about how good it was to have it there. They are pretty much using it for everything now."

The race control decision-making process could even become part of the broadcast in the future.

"We'd love to take that next step," added Seamer. "We just need to make sure that Bairdo and race control are comfortable with it, because obviously it's a camera into their world, and they're trying to run a race.

"But we'd love to be able to show that to fans once we're really comfortable with the system. Every time we use it, we're getting more and more comfortable."

Stewards dished out a $16,000 worth of fines at Phillip Island alone, $5000 each for Triple Eight and Team 18 for loose wheels following pitstops, and $6000 to DJR Team Penske for having both cars breach new brake lock mechanism rules.

Sean Seamer's full Below the Bonnet interview is available right now. Listen by clicking the play button below.

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Series Supercars
Author Andrew van Leeuwen