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The difficulties of capturing motorsport's best onboard footage

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A look behind the technology required to transmit and record from four onboard cameras on IndyCars.

IndyCar Onboard footage
IndyCar Onboard footage

The pinnacle of motorsport footage is undoubtedly that which is captured from onboard cameras, but, as you'd expect, getting those shots is no small task. IndyCar — despite its low ratings — likely has the best onboard footage, courtesy of a four-camera rig that's topped of by a 360-degree roll hoop camera. That whole setup is new to 2012's IndyCar chassis, and it's provided by Broadcast Sports Incorporated.

The New York Times has looked into the system, which weighs in at 7.5 pounds and is supplemented by six miles of fiber optic cabling, three trailers, dozens of cameras, and 11 stations to receive the signals on an unused military frequency. To keep everything equal, all vehicles other than the usual six that are equipped with the cameras are required to be fitted with dummy gear with the same aero and weight effects. It's a major ordeal, no doubt, but anything for the best shot, right?