Historic freshwater distance race brought to life in real-time by Inmarsat

Inmarsat connects competitors and fans of the Chicago Yacht Club Race to Mackinac® for the first time

Inmarsat will serve as the official broadband provider for the 107th running of the Chicago Yacht Club Race to Mackinac. Fans of the race will be able to follow the teams in real-time as a small group of on-board commentators will upload high-resolution pictures and video to Facebook and Twitter via Inmarsat’s mobile satellite communications network throughout the race.

Building on the success of the Volvo Ocean Race, made possible by Inmarsat’s reliable satellite connectivity, the company is an official race sponsor for the mid-summer classic 333-mile race from Chicago to Mackinac Island, beginning Friday 10 July 2015.

Matt Knighton, Onboard Reporter for Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing during the 2014-15 edition of the Volvo Ocean Race, and winner of the Inmarsat Onboard Reporter Award, will be racing on Chicago Yacht Club member Mark Hauf’s Transpac 52 Imedi. “In the Volvo Ocean Race, Inmarsat enabled us to send quality media from the most remote corners of the ocean, so the public could live the race through our eyes. It never ceases to amaze me how their systems can make the world feel like a smaller place,” said Knighton.

“We’re pleased to support the 107th running of this world-class yachting event,” said Ronald Spithout, President Inmarsat Maritime. “Being able to connect the racers back to shore, with the latest race statistics and pictures will give race followers real-time insight into how the competitors are faring. At Inmarsat we are proud to support the sailing industry with world-class, proven communications including FleetBroadband and Fleet One, which is specifically designed for small leisure vessels.”

“The tremendous success of the Volvo Ocean Race demonstrates that the ability to follow the drama on the water in real-time is a critical part of enjoying offshore sailing competitions” explained Race Chairman Matt Gallagher. “We look forward to sharing these glimpses of the race in unprecedented fashion with the family and friends of our competitors and the yacht racing community at large. We are excited to collaborate with a proven innovator like Inmarsat as we develop new ways of engaging the press, our sponsors, and most importantly our growing audience of enthusiastic fans on social media sites worldwide” said Gallagher.

Further information

About Inmarsat 

Inmarsat plc is the leading provider of global mobile satellite communications services. Since 1979, Inmarsat has been providing reliable voice and high-speed data communications to governments, enterprises and other organizations, with a range of services that can be used on land, at sea or in the air. Inmarsat employs around 1,600 staff in more than 60 locations around the world, with a presence in the major ports and centres of commerce on every continent. Inmarsat is listed on the London Stock Exchange (LSE:ISAT.L). The Inmarsat press release newsfeed and corporate updates are on @InmarsatGlobal.

Jonathan Sinnatt
Director of Corporate Communications
[email protected]
+44 (0)20 7728 1935

Katie Potts
Corporate Communications Manager
[email protected]
+44 (0)20 7728 1492

About Chicago Yacht Club and the Chicago Yacht Club Race to Mackinac

Founded in 1875 and located in the heart of Chicago, the Chicago Yacht Club is the host of the annual Chicago Yacht Club Race to Mackinac. With over 300 boats and 2800 crew members set to participate this July, the Race was first run in 1898. Famous for its grueling distance and challenging mix of weather conditions and sea state, the Chicago Yacht Club Race to Mackinac is a destination event for competitive sailors from around the globe.

Follow the race on Facebook, YouTube and Twitter (@racetomackinac).