IM Partners with RaceRanger for Pro Series

IRONMAN will utilize RaceRanger’s electronic drafting detection technology at all IRONMAN Pro Series events, which include the 2024 IRONMAN and IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship events.

Started as a passion project by ex-professional triathletes James Elvery and Dylan McNiece to create greater accuracy on identifying drafting, RaceRanger is an electronic drafting detection system powered by Ultrawideband, Bluetooth, GPS/GNSS, and 4G/LTE technologies. The device connects to an athlete’s bicycle at the front fork and the seat post. A light detection system, triggered by the sensors’ proximity to one another, externally indicates whether an athlete has entered the draft zone. The promise of RaceRanger is that it both alerts referees and professional athletes with a visual cue of movement into the draft zone, eliminating the second-guessing that can come as athletes move along the bike course (e.g., the accordion effect that can come when the race turns uphill). The rear RaceRanger unit also has storage capability, allowing race officials to review how long an athlete may have spent in the draft zone.

RaceRanger has been piloted at select IRONMAN events over the last several years. IRONMAN Rules and Projects Coordinator Jimmy Riccitello stated: ““After years of collaboration and testing, formalizing a partnership with RaceRanger and its team is an exciting next step. During testing at the 2023 IRONMAN Florida triathlon, we saw encouraging data from RaceRanger’s continued improvements, giving us confidence to implement the technology at the 2024 IRONMAN Pro Series races in an effort to produce an objective draft zone for our professional athletes and referees.”

RaceRanger units will start being attached to professional athletes’ bikes at IRONMAN 70.3 Oceanside in April, along with all 16 other Pro Series events. RaceRanger will not replace race officials; rather, it is meant as a tool to assist with rules enforcement. Ultimately, drafting penalties will remain a judgment call by referees. Critically, this also means that drafting penalties will remain unappealable by athletes.