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NTT boosts Indy 500 fan experience

May 24, 2024

By Colin Mann

Technology and business solutions provider NTT, and NTT DATA are unveiling new simulation technology at this year’s Indianapolis 500 presented by Gainbridge. The technology lets users, for the first time, fully experience the sensations of driving an NTT INDYCAR SERIES car the way professionals do.

NTT is the parent company of NTT DATA, and they serve together as Official Technology Partner of INDYCAR, the NTT INDYCAR SERIES, Indianapolis Motor Speedway (IMS), the Indianapolis 500 and NASCAR Brickyard weekend.

For 2024, a new racing demonstration will leverage ‘Embodied Knowledge’ technology from NTT Research and the vast data NTT and INDYCAR have captured throughout their multiyear collaboration. Embodied Knowledge powers simulators that blend physical sensations with digital innovation, allowing users to precisely experience a track as driven by a professional driver. This includes steering wheel resistance, vibrations and forces exerted on pedals, shifting gears, tire traction as they overtake a competitor and more.

NTT Embodied Knowledge technology is used in medical surgery training and coaching and fan experiences in sports. Future applications include employee training across retail, education and manufacturing, as well as enabling AI robots to learn how to move and react the way humans do to perform tasks from restocking shelves to in-home caregiving. The effort is part of the more than $16 billion NTT invests each year in research and development, uncovering innovations that have commercial impact for their customers.

“NTT DATA has pushed the boundaries of how technology can impact motorsports, helping us tap into vast amounts of data in advanced and productive ways,” said Roger Penske, chairman of Penske Corporation, which owns INDYCAR and IMS. “Their impact can be felt across our enterprise, where NTT Smart Venue Technology has vastly improved the fan experience at IMS and real-time data from race control fuels our INDYCAR App powered by NTT DATA.”

“Every day, we work with the world’s leading enterprises in healthcare, financial services, insurance, manufacturing, public sector and other vital sectors, yet few organisations produce as much real-time data and analytics as the INDYCAR racing teams and venues of the NTT INDYCAR SERIES,” added Eric Clark, CEO, NTT DATA, North America. “Partnering with INDYCAR helps us explore and pressure test our offerings in real-time intense settings. We use those learnings to help our clients transform their businesses, improve sustainability, leverage AI, enhance customer experiences and expand their internal capacity for innovation.”

Fans at the Indianapolis 500 or other events at Indianapolis Motor Speedway can experience NTT DATA Smart Venue technology, sustainability solutions and live race data at the Pagoda command displays. For example, AI-enabled optical detection technologies improve security and traffic flow, and when combined with digital ticketing, provide real-time and future prediction wait times at the event gates and concessions. This allows fans at the world’s largest single-day sporting event to move through the venue as safely and efficiently as possible.

Remote fans of the NTT INDYCAR SERIES can also tap into the INDYCAR app for real-time, data-driven racing insights that include live scoring, in-car cameras and driver-to-team radio communications. Fans can get in on the action, from pit strategies to predictions of race winners.

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