Endurance Mountain Bike Racers Tracked On-line by SPOT Satellite Messenger- 2,711 Miles from Banff, Alberta to the Mexico Border
MILPITAS, CA (June 10, 2008) – SPOT Inc., the pioneer behind the award-winning SPOT Satellite MessengerTm, today announced its partnership with the Tour Divide, the longest solo, self-supported mountain bike race in the world. Each racer will be equipped with a SPOT Satellite Messenger, which provides online GPS tracking of each racer on Google Maps™. New SPOT shared pages functionality, currently in beta format, will allow for the last updated location of the racers to be viewable by fans online at www.tourdivide.org/leaderboard beginning June 13, 2008.
SPOT, the world's first Satellite Messenger enables users to send their GPS location and status update message to friends, family or an emergency response center, virtually anywhere around the world independent of cellular coverage. With SPOT Shared pages, subscribers can now share their adventures to anyone with a web connection.
"Tour Divide is the most demanding ultra-endurance mountain bike race on the planet. It's 100% self supported for almost 3,000 miles with very little access to communication or emergency help," states Matthew Lee, two-time victor and co-organizer of Tour Divide. "SPOT is lightweight, tough enough for our riders to carry on their bikes and will enable our families, friends and fans to track us real time online. To complete a backcountry race down the spine of Rocky Mountains is hard enough without concerning oneself with communication logistics in territory where mobile phones rarely have reception. With SPOT Satellite Messengers on board, the riders simply power on the units, tune out from complicated logistics and tune in to some of the most scenic and rugged country in North America."
"SPOT was designed to be rugged and durable, enabling anyone outside of cellular coverage the ability let others know where they are and how they are doing – ideal for the competitors of Tour Divide," said Darren Bassel, Marketing Director for SPOT Inc. "The mountain biking industry is built on backcountry experience but these racers push the outer limits. Now with SPOT, we can watch the progress of these riders online as the race unfolds high upon the Divide"
Tour Divide is a pure test of mental and physical determination for endurance mountain bikers attempting to complete Adventure Cycling Association's 2,711 mile Great Divide Mountain Bike Route at one fell swoop. It follows the trails and jeep roads lacing the Continental Divide from Banff, Alberta to the New Mexico/Mexico border crossing. It passes through two Canadian Provinces and five States, summiting the Divide 30 times for a net elevation gain of 200,000 feet. On average, twenty-five competitors toe the line each year and typically ride separated from each other by days and hundreds of miles on route. Fifty percent of the competitors each year never see the Mexico finish line due to mechanical failure, injuries and/or fatigue.
SPOT enables users, based on varying levels of need, to send messages to friends, family, or emergency responders, and to visually track the location of the SPOT satellite messenger:
• Alert 9-1-1 notifies an emergency response center of your GPS location
• Ask for Help sends a request for help to friends and family
• Check In lets contacts know where you are and that you are OK
• Track Progress sends and saves your location and allows contacts to track your progress using Google Maps™
Tour Divide is scheduled to begin June 13, 2008. Follow the action online at www.tourdivide.org/leaderboard