Tour de France 2021: Tech Making The Race Most Exciting Yet

Tour de France is known to be the world’s biggest bicycle race in the world. From its exciting close line finishes at Champs-Élysées to the fierce battle of the terrains, it has held the status of one of the biggest Grand Tour in the world.

With such a fierce reputation, the race attracts some of the biggest audiences from all over the world. That opens the door for sponsors and manufacturers to surprise millions of onlookers with different innovative creations.

Since the scare of the pandemic still lurking around, the 108th edition of the Tour de France is bringing innovative ways for the television audience to get great insights into the race.

After a year where in-person action has been restricted the television audience is expected to surge by millions. In that case, the organizers along with their official tech partner NTT are offering broadcasters, digital channels, and fans an array of real-life data on the race.

Real-Time Data From Tour de France

Tour de France will see a ton of new techs being introduced in the race to make the race more interactive with the audience watching from home.

NTT is using small sensors mounted under the saddle of each rider which will provide real-time GPS location and speed of the racer every 400ms.


The retrieved data is transmitted via a moving mesh network with gateways being the TV motorbikes, helicopters, and aircraft, where the data is multiplexed with the broadcast video and transmitted to NTT’s ‘Big Data Truck’

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After the data is transmitted it is processed in the NTT cloud and calculated based on 53 attributes such as course gradient, weather, time gaps, etc.

Creating A Digital Twin

NTT is also revolutionizing the viewer’s experience by creating a ‘digital twin’ of the race using IoT sensors. It will compute and use networks alongside its platform and mapped against a geo-location model of each stage of the Tour.


It will also give real-time visibility of key locations and assets and also the in-the-moment update of caravan and race arrival times.

The digital twinning will help detailed visualization of the race making it the world’s largest connected stadium with a central tracker system for fans.

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Atif Abidi
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