A brief history of RaceTec
RaceTec started as a marketing initiative for a retail company I worked for in South Africa. In 2002 we approached the world famous Comrades Marathon, offering to look after their IT requirements in return for branding at the event, and on the 13 hour live TV broadcast. The race timer (ChampionChip) was required to simply pass us raw time data, and we were responsible for processing that data and making it available to the TV broadcast, live web tracking and results, medical tent (20 computers), information desks (80 computers), media (10 computers). Plus more. All for 12 hours from a number of intermediate points en-route. At this time, the Comrades was probably the most technologically advanced race in the world.
And it certainly gave RaceTec the kind of development base that enables it to cope with any requirement thrown at it, no matter what the scale of the race. Where most existing scoring software started small with a local club run, RaceTec started at the top end of the scale. Where these scoring systems struggle to upscale to handle large volumes and numerous connections to them, RaceTec excels. It’s what RaceTec does best. I’ve been at races where there were 200 connections to RaceTec from supporters monitoring a live leaderboard, and the laptop on which I was running barely blinked.
I’ll be the first to admit that this high-end start did cause some problems when RaceTec went to market, and had to cope with much simpler requirements, but all these hurdles were overcome many years ago.
In 2007 I moved to Australia and this provided the impetus to spend more time on RaceTec to fulfil my plans of taking it to market properly. At that stage I had a small core group of committed clients who have been instrumental in refining RaceTec to the user-friendly, but powerful and flexible package that it is today.
I also made the decision to market RaceTec on an annual licence fee system. The only way I can commit to RaceTec, and provide the required service to my clients, is to have a reliable income from it. When software developers market their products on a once-off price, eventually there is saturation, income drops off and the developer has to move on to other products. I don’t want that to happen with RaceTec. I want to keep ahead of the competition and keep RaceTec at the forefront of timing technology. This is what will ultimately be the biggest benefit to my clients.
In 2013 I was still full-time employed, and made the decision to go on my own to concentrate on RaceTec and race timing. Since then the features and capabilities of RaceTec have grown exponentially, and continue to grow, keeping up with an ever-changing and demanding environment.
In 2020 RaceTec achieved another first in scoring software when I started work on, and released, RaceTec Toolkit
, the world's first native Android and iOS app
designed specifically for race timers and race officials.
What has been fantastic to see is how all my clients have grown with their use of RaceTec, and this is reflected in the fact that most of
my sales are existing clients buying more licences due to their expanding businesses. I like to believe that RaceTec has played a part in that expansion.
Graeme Vincent, Feb 2022