Better reporting from Volvo Ocean Race
THE 2017-18 VOLVO Ocean Race is reinventing its Onboard Reporter (OBR) programme to tell more of the raw story than ever before – with the race creating a squad of multimedia reporters able to work across the fleet rather than being attached to individual teams.
The team of 10-12 reporters will be more fluid and flexible, potentially being able to embed within teams on a leg-by-leg basis instead of signing on with one team for the whole race as before.
“This will also help with what is a difficult task – balancing integrity and acquiring sufficient trust of the sailors,” says Volvo Ocean Race CEO Mark Turner. “It’s like a war reporter jumping into the front line with the soldiers. Their job is to tell the team’s story in as raw a way as possible.”
Volvo Ocean Race’s Head of TV, Leon Sefton, believes the ability to rotate the OBRS will provide a crucial distance between the teams and the OBRS that will better enable them to properly perform the role of observational journalist.
The Volvo Ocean 65 racing boats are effectively mobile digital production facilities, operating with state-of-the-art satellite hardware and services supplied by Cobham SATCOM and Inmarsat.
As part of a refit process currently underway at the race’s boatyard facility in Lisbon, all Volvo Ocean 65s are gaining two new fixed camera angles, taking the total to six positions across the boat.
Each Onboard Reporter has additional access to night vision and action cameras, while drone and 360o cameras will also be in regular use across the fleet.
This technology allows the OBRS to go live from anywhere on the planet, at any time, transmitting the real story from the boats. As soon as it’s sent, you’ll see it.