ASO, the French media group that organises the Tour de France, has deployed a Globalstar satellite phone system to keep its support and emergency teams in touch on the UK stages of the 2014 Tour.
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This year the Grand Départ – the opening stage of the Tour de France – will take place in Yorkshire on Saturday 5 July, starting in Leeds and finishing in Harrogate.
Two further stages will be held in the UK, running between York and Sheffield, and Cambridge and London, before the race hops back across the Channel.
With average speeds on the road hitting 24 miles per hour and stages running well over 100 miles in length, the Tour de France depends on reliable, rugged and dynamic dependable voice and data connections in areas where mobile coverage may not exist, in order to keep race organisers, support teams and the famous Caravane Publicitaire – the convoy of sponsors vehicles that precedes the race itself, handing out memorabilia and free samples to spectators – in touch.
This year the organising committee will be using 100 of Globalstar’s flagship GSP-1700 satellite phones, deployed through communications provider Global Telesat Communications.
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The supplier claims its devices deliver the fastest handheld data speeds and highest quality voice in the satellite comms sector, backed by the world’s first second generation satellite network in orbit, offering latency-free services.
Globalstar Europe marketing director Gavan Murphy said: “The Tour de France has to run its operations like clockwork and reliable communications in any location is critical.
“This is one of the world’s greatest sporting events and we are delighted that our state-of-the-art satellite network and handsets are helping the organisers stay connected.”