Case study: Taittinger RSYC Regatta
Sailing to success using SMS
With over 200 boats taking part, the Taittinger Royal Solent Yacht Club (RSYC) Regatta needed an efficient way to report on race data without compromising the accuracy of the results. aql stepped in to develop a customised platform that enabled Race Officials to access and collate data from SMS text messages in real-time making sure the race results were processed quickly and accurately.
Hosted by the Royal Solent Yacht Club (RSYC), the Taittinger RSYC Regatta, held in Yarmouth, Isle of Wight, is one of the favourite races among the Solent yachting community. Having missed the 2020 regatta due to the pandemic, the 2021 event saw 203 boats register to race in the Western Solent over the weekend of Friday 16th - Sunday 18th July.
The yacht club had to overcome many obstacles to host the 2021 regatta. Over 90 of the Club’s members stepped up to volunteer to help run the race and staff worked tirelessly to adapt to the challenges of putting on such an event with many COVID restrictions still in place.
One of the many challenges was finding an efficient and accurate way to record and collate race data into a readable format that race officials in the Sailing Office could easily access to view the results. Previously, the race management team had to manually collate race results making it a cumbersome and admin heavy task. This is when RSYC turned to aql for a solution.
Customised SMS messaging platform
aql promptly developed and built the “Declaration package” where an SMS enabled virtual mobile number allowed participants to send a text message upon completion of a race, free of charge directly to the race management team. Each competing yacht was asked to send their finish time and position promptly on completion of the race by providing the sail numbers of the boats immediately ahead and behind them.
The high-capacity virtual number allowed the Sailing Office to instantly receive large quantities of text messages via a dedicated SMS platform or email if competitors were all finishing at a similar time.
Results in real-time
The “Declaration package” helped the Taittinger RSYC Regatta to determine confidently who finished the race and their placement. The race officials were able to access and collate data from the SMS text messages in real-time making the results process a lot quicker than previous years.
The RSYC's Commodore, Anne Kyle, commented; “We had 203 boats taking part and the Sailing Office downloaded spreadsheets off the aql system on seven occasions when the results sheets were slightly ambiguous or needed double checking. It proved invaluable in these instances and helped the results go through smoothly and without any complaints, and for this we are most grateful.
Having used the system this year, we're looking to use the system again to enable us to feel confident that we were giving our competitors their results as correctly and as swiftly as possible. Our team is working closely with aql to further develop the platform to help the Sailing Office in their management of future races.”