3D cinematography has taken the world of motion pictures by storm, and the same technology is now set to revolutionise sports broadcasting, with MotoGP taking part in this revolution.
In conjunction with 3D and digital systems specialists, Pace, Dorna Sports carried out a successful trial of the latest high definition 3D Fusion camera systems during the recent Red Bull U.S. Grand Prix at Laguna Seca.
Academy Award winner, John Bruno, and company founder, Vince Pace, captured track footage, pit action and interviews at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca, with the same groundbreaking 3D camera technology used to shoot the forthcoming sci-fi epic, Avatar – director James Cameron’s first major motion picture since Titanic.
The Cameron/Pace designed 3D Fusion system relies on a dual lens system to capture left-eye and right-eye imagery separately – allowing the recreation of the field perception depth in post-production – and combines two HD camera bodies and a special acquisition rig.
The test video footage shot at Laguna Seca was edited into a three-minute video loop, designed to show how Pace’s 3D Fusion system can enhance the viewing experience of the world’s premier two-wheeled motorsport championship.
The demonstration 3D video was screened to a very select audience, including Dani Pedrosa and Jorge Lorenzo, for the first time during the Red Bull Indianapolis Grand Prix. Despite being produced only for evaluation, feedback from everyone who saw the demonstration video was overwhelmingly positive.
"It was amazing," declared Pedrosa. "I saw a brief demonstration in Laguna, but this was more detailed today. When you see the images it’s really impressive; it’s like actually being there at the racetrack."
The Laguna Seca 3D trial, which was almost a year in the planning, was the brainchild of world renowned visual effects specialist, John Bruno: "I saw MotoGP and I knew that this was the sport that would showcase our 3D technology to best effect."
"Dorna already has a reputation for bringing the camera to the most demanding and entertaining position, as the racers speed around the track in excess of 300 km/h," said Vince Pace who, with James Cameron, developed the 3D Fusion system. "Together I am confident that we can use our 3D system to enhance this reputation further, putting the viewer onboard with the rider as they actually ride the race."
"Everyone at Pace is looking forward to working with Dorna in the future, to bring this unique 3D experience to MotoGP viewers worldwide," concluded Pace.
"It’s imperative that, as the leading two-wheeled motorsports championship in the world, we keep abreast of all emerging video technologies, and how they may be used to enhance the service we provide to our broadcast partners," said Manel Arroyo, Managing Director of Dorna.
"Already we’re working on introducing high definition coverage of MotoGP in 2010, and live, high definition 3D coverage could well be the next step if demand is there from our partner broadcasters."