Today Microsoft, in partnership with NASCAR, debuted their first race management app, which will be used this weekend for the Toyota – Save Mart 350. Steve O’Donnell, NASCAR executive vice president and chief racing development officer, and Microsoft’s Mike Downey, the principle architect of the app briefly presented the app on Friday, which brings six different data categories, including historical data, timing and scoring, pit road officiating, video replay and car positioning, together into one app. This will allow race directors to deliver messages to teams much faster than the current system allows.
“NASCAR has really put an emphasis, especially over the last 18 months, on technology and new technology and how we can bring things more quickly to the fans, really put them inside the driver’s seat,” O’Donnell said. “But equally as important is how we can work together to be more efficient from a governing standpoint, especially when it comes to race control.”
The app was built with Windows 10 and the Azure platform with the goal being to make decisions more quickly in the speedy sport.
“This first phase is around consolidating operations and systems like this, collecting more information,” Downey said. “As we go forward, we want to help NASCAR better utilize that information that we are helping them collect. … So this is really the first of a multi-staged approach to use data to better inform how NASCAR both runs their races and how they tune their races to create an even better product for their fans.”
The app is currently on version 1.0, but Microsoft and NASCAR plan to keep working together to improve the app as necessary.