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George Vlahakis
IU Communications

Jordan Bailey
IU Student Foundation

Last modified: Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Little 500 adding a new high-tech timing system for 2013 races

MyLaps is used worldwide at motorsports, cycling and Olympic events

April 9, 2013

Editors: A credentials request form is available for media wishing to cover Little 500. For information about Little 500 participants from your community, contact George Vlahakis at 812-855-0846 or

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- This year's Little 500 races April 19 and 20 at Indiana University Bloomington will employ a new advanced timing system that makes it easier for fans, officials and competitors to follow the action on the track.

Little 500

The 2013 women's Little 500 will take place April 19 at Bill Armstrong Stadium

Print-Quality Photo

Through a partnership with -- formerly HDNet -- the IU Student Foundation has finalized a deal with MyLaps Sports Timing to purchase an electronic timing and scoring system to be used in tandem with volunteers during this year's race.

"The IU Student Foundation is thrilled to be introducing this system to the Little 500. We feel that this investment will add value to the race and continue to make the Little 500 a relevant and thriving event for years to come," said Jordan Bailey, the organization's assistant director. "Ultimately, it's a valuable investment in the organization of the event."

MyLaps was founded in 1982 as AMB Timing and specialized in motorsport racing. In 2008, it merged with ChampionChip, which specialized in endurance sporting events. MyLaps is used at cycling and motorsports events worldwide, as well as in Olympic sports such as speed skating and track and field.

"With MyLaps' background and history lying in motorsports and cycling, the IU Student Foundation could not have found a better company to fulfill the timing needs of the Little 500," Bailey said.

Each bicycle will be equipped with a small RFID timing chip that is about the size of a half dollar. On race day, a detection loop made of coaxial cabling will be buried under the start/finish line. This loop is plugged into a piece of hardware called a decoder, which serves as the brain of the operation.

Every time a chip passes through the loop area, it sends about 80 data points to the decoder, which feeds the information into an algorithm that can determine precisely when the chip passes through the center point of the loop. This information is then fed into an easy-to-read layout in MyLaps' Orbits 4 Software.

Teams and riders will have reliable and accurate race data down to the 1/100th of a second, which also will be an extra tool for judges to assess penalties and make official calls concerning specific race scenarios.

"For our live audience, this means that they will be able to have access to lap-by-lap information by looking at the electronic scoreboard or pulling it up on the Race Monitor timing app via their smartphone," said Bailey, who serves as race director.

Race fans watching the Little 500 on will find a scrolling ticker at the bottom of the screen that refreshes every lap.

The 26th running of the women's Little 500 will begin at 4 p.m. Friday, April 19, at Bill Armstrong Stadium, near the intersection of 17th Street and Fee Lane. The following day, the 63rd running of the men's race will begin at 2 p.m.

Tickets for Little 500 race events are $25 ($10 for children 12 and younger) and are available through Ticketmaster locations include the IU Auditorium Box Office and the Assembly Hall box office; more information is available on the IU Student Foundation website.