The 43rd Dakar Rally takes place from 3rd – 15th January 2021 and starts and ends in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. 295 teams have entered the race across all racing categories, including BRX Bahrain Raid Xtreme. The team consists of British motorsport and technology company Prodrive and is backed by Mumtalakat, Bahrain’s sovereign wealth fund. The team is competing for the coveted top spot in the all-new, custom-designed Prodrive BRX T1 ‘Hunter’, a purpose-built car intended for off-road events.
The BRX support team will follow in an HGV race office and two management cars. The race office carries the control centre and communication hub from where the core support team have an overview of the entire event. Good connectivity is critical to ensure that there is always reliable two-way communication available which will ensure that support can be carried out timeously and effectively.
During trials at Prodrive’s HQ in Banbury, Oxford it was discovered that there was very little mobile signal available inside the race office. The cause of the problem was down to the materials used in the build of the race office, which were preventing mobile signals from penetrating the body of the vehicle. The lack of mobile signal was cause of great concern, as the team extensively rely on their mobile devices to stay in touch with the other support vehicles and race control. This could ultimately affect the team’s chance of success at the rally.
Activ Technology Ltd, an existing reseller of Frequency Telecom, contacted Frequency to find out whether they could assist with a legal, robust and reliable in-vehicle mobile signal booster solution which could easily be configured to enhance mobile signal in the UK, UAE, and Saudi Arabia. The Cel-Fi GO M in-vehicle signal booster was put forward as the optimal solution to overcome the signal issues within the race office. Activ Technology provided Prodrive with the Cel-Fi GO M solution comprising of 1 x Trucker Antenna as the donor antenna, 1 x Cel-Fi GO M signal booster and 1 x Patch Antenna as the server antenna.
The Cel-Fi GO M solution was installed in the race office at the Banbury HQ and configured to the corporate network. The deployment was a success. From near to no signal in the race office previously, the team were able to benefit from 5 bars of mobile coverage within the race office vehicle when the booster was active.
The rally cars and support vehicles were transported from the UK to the UAE and onward to Saudi Arabia. The Cel-Fi GO M booster was successfully configured to the different local networks in the respective countries, providing essential mobile connectivity to the BRX Bahrain Rally Xtreme team.