FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Medtronic and Twin Cities In Motion Launch New Athlete Tracking Technology
Marathon spectators now can receive real-time texts with runners' times and
MINNEAPOLIS - Sep. 27, 2010 For the first time in the history of the
Medtronic Twin Cities Marathon, spectators will be able to track individual
runners' course times and locations via real time text messages on their
The Medtronic Athlete Tracker, powered by Convergent, sends text messages
to spectators' mobile phones as athletes cross timing mats at various
locations along the course. Title sponsor Medtronic and race organizer,
Twin Cities In Motion, came up with the idea to help spectators plan their
viewing locations and better predict the finish times of their athletes.
"We're very pleased to offer this service to enhance the race experience
for our athletes and their families and friends," said Virginia Brophy
Achman, Executive Director for Twin Cities In Motion (TCM). "With race
participation increasing 40 percent over the last five years, it is more
important than ever for spectators to be able to follow the athletes who
have trained so hard to be here."
Text notification sounds simple at first. The challenge posed by the
Medtronic Twin Cities Marathon is volume and time. With 17,000 runners,
300,000 spectators, 26 mile marker identification points and an event
lasting less than half a day, the technology needed to be architected
correctly, or it wouldn't work. Medtronic spearheaded a solution by
partnering with Convergent - a nationally recognized technology solution
provider for Microsoft UC and voice.
"The idea of building an athlete tracking system for the Medtronic Twin
Cities Marathon immediately sparked our interest," said Tavis Hudson,
Convergent's Health Solutions Manager. "At Convergent, our specialty is
building communication systems that solve business challenges and bring
people together. The Medtronic Athlete Tracker, powered by Convergent, does
just that. With our technology, spectators will be able to follow - and
cheer on - individual athletes out of a pack of thousands."
"It is exciting to bring innovations like this to the Medtronic Twin Cities
Marathon," said Tammy Johnson, Medtronic global brand marketing director.
"Helping great organizations like Twin Cities In Motion enhance great
community events is one of the many reasons Medtronic pushes the boundaries
of technology every day."
Athletes and spectators can sign up to receive text updates via a link on
Twin Cities In Motion, (formerly Twin Cities Marathon, Inc.) is the
non-profit organization that organizes running events throughout the year,
including the Valentine's Day TC 5K, 100% Irish For A Day TC 5K & TC 10
Mile, Medtronic TC 1 Mile, Red, White & Boom! TC Half Marathon, Twins
Territory 4K, the TC 5K, TC 10K & Medtronic TC Family Events, Medtronic
Twin Cities Marathon, Medtronic TC 10 Mile, all related events and
Medtronic TC Kids Marathon program, as a community service for the
Minneapolis/St. Paul area.
Medtronic, Inc. (www.medtronic.com), headquartered in Minneapolis, is the
global leader in medical technology- alleviating pain, restoring health,
and extending life for millions of people around the world.
Convergent is a nationally recognized technology solution provider for
Microsoft UC and voice technology.