The PGA TOUR and TrackMan announced today they are expanding golf’s most advanced club and ball tracking and tracing solution. By combining TrackMan’s cutting-edge Doppler Radar and club and ball tracking technology, TOUR events will have tracing capabilities for every golf shot hit during the season. This will significantly enhance how fans experience the world’s best golfers by providing more detail for television, OTT and digital platforms.
This agreement will double previous ball-in-motion tracing capabilities on the golf course, allowing nearly every shot to be traced and automatically shared with television and OTT partners and across TOUR digital platforms such as PGATOUR.COM and the PGA TOUR app. The arrangement with TrackMan begins in 2022 for PGA TOUR LIVE and TOUR digital platforms, while the domestic television partner agreement begins in 2023. This expansion will immediately offer fan enhancements such as the visualization of ball flight paths for shots inbound to the green in TOURCast.
“We’re excited to increase the volume and depth of tracking and tracing for every shot on the PGA TOUR,” said Ken Lovell, PGA TOUR Senior Vice President Golf Technologies. “TrackMan’s sensors will substantially increase content available for analysis and initiate the development of new insights, while creating the opportunity for us to develop innovative visualizations for fans to view all the incredible shots on TOUR.”
Fans will see more information beginning in 2022 on how and why the ball moves and arrives at a certain position. This is achieved by using TrackMan technology to capture club speed, ball speed, curve, landing spin, launch angle, spin rate, spin axis, apex, carry and more. The advanced aerodynamic models can also determine the effects of wind, weather, and altitude on a shot so that fans can understand how a shot was impacted by environmental factors.
In addition to doubling the collection of radar and tracing information, the new system will substantially increase the range and sensitivity of the content that will now be layered with video for use on any TOUR media platform.
Klaus Eldrup-Jorgensen, co-founder and CEO of TrackMan, commented “We have been working closely with the PGA TOUR for more than 15 years, to accurately measure and report data on club delivery, ball launch, ball flight, and tracers for the best players in the world. We are proud to be chosen to implement our new solutions with the PGA TOUR, which will ultimately include all shots for all players. The future of golf will be told in new and innovative ways, the fan experience will elevate to a new level, and the stories about how good these guys play is just beginning.”
The club and ball tracking and tracing solution has become a valuable element to “ShotLink powered by CDW,” the TOUR’s real-time data collection and scoring system. As the TOUR and CDW continue to innovate the acclaimed scoring system that has benefited tournaments, broadcast partners, players and fans in countless ways over the years, the TrackMan system contributes to the automated data collection efforts by allowing ShotLink to auto-trigger on shots without input from a person.
The new technology being deployed expands tracking capabilities from tee boxes only to shots hit from the fairway and around the green, where the system determines the exact 3D position of the ball at any point in its flight. The TrackMan technology has the ability to lock onto a ball that starts behind the trees and only becomes visible to the radar halfway through its flight. It’s able to accurately track balls up to 400 yards in any conditions; rain, fog, sunrise, and sunset.
For a typical TOUR event, around 40 units are placed around the course to track shots with advanced radar and camera units on tee boxes and greens to capture final resting position.
TrackMan also recently developed a mobile system that will be used for the capture of radar and tracing information from the fairway and will automatically integrate into TOUR media platforms, which is aided by AWS, the TOUR’s Official Cloud Provider. There are no cables or connections with the mobile system, which adds very little weight for the operator. The TOUR is testing the mobile system for expanded future use on PGA TOUR Champions, the Korn Ferry Tour and in other executions.
The club and ball tracking and tracing system will utilize AWS Fargate, Media Services, and numerous other AWS products to process and deliver radar and tracing on every shot in nearly real-time. The full suite of AWS products will allow TrackMan to reduce their onsite footprint and allow fast and easy access to the devices and information from anywhere around the world.
ABOUT PGA TOUR
By showcasing golf’s greatest players, the PGA TOUR engages, inspires and positively impacts our fans, partners and communities worldwide.
The PGA TOUR, headquartered in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida, co-sanctions tournaments on the PGA TOUR, PGA TOUR Champions, Korn Ferry Tour, PGA TOUR Latinoamérica and PGA TOUR Canada. Members on the PGA TOUR represent the world’s best players, hailing from 28 countries and territories outside the United States (90 international members). The PGA TOUR has long-term domestic distribution partnerships for broadcast coverage on CBS, NBC and Golf Channel and video streaming service on ESPN+. Internationally, PGA TOUR coverage is available across 200+ countries and territories in 27 languages via 43 local broadcast partners, in addition to the digital streaming service platform GOLFTV powered by PGA TOUR. Virtually all tournaments are organized as non-profit organizations to maximize charitable giving, and to date, tournaments across all Tours have generated more than $3.37 billion.
Fans can follow the PGA TOUR on PGATOUR.COM, the No. 1 site in golf, on the PGA TOUR app and on social media channels, including Facebook, Instagram (in English, Spanish and Korean), LinkedIn, TikTok, Twitter, WeChat, Weibo, Toutiao, Douyin and LINE.
Over the past 20 years, TrackMan has, in collaboration with the best golfers, teachers, and equipment manufacturers, developed solutions that provide the most accurate, real-time data on ball collision, launch, flight, and landing. The technology has helped professionals and amateurs unleash their potential in golf and changed how golf is taught and experienced.
More than 1,000 tour players have invested in TrackMan technology for their personal use, with over 90 of the Top 100 players in the world using TrackMan for club delivery and ball flight analysis, shot testing, and optimizing their equipment.
Today, TrackMan solutions include the world’s finest launch monitor, the leading simulator and virtual golf engine, and the most accurate driving range solution. TrackMan’s 360 solution is used by many of the world’s finest golf clubs featuring TrackMan 4 for instruction and club fitting, TrackMan Range for ball flight tracking on the range, TrackMan Simulator for Indoor Golf, and Virtual Golf allowing a fully rendered version of their golf course(s) on all TrackMan platforms.
TrackMan A/S, headquartered in Vedbæk, Denmark, featuring the largest R&D team in the golf industry, is the developer and owner of TrackMan technologies, which include a comprehensive patent portfolio of granted patents and pending patent applications.