As Kentuckians, we take great pride in our Commonwealth and the things that make it Kentucky. Some things that come to mind: bourbon, bluegrass, basketball, corvettes, and caves. However, this weekend may be the most meaningful event of the year; the run for the roses!
The Kentucky Derby is a classic throwback event where men dress in seersucker suits and women don some of the most spectacular hats you will ever see. From the wing tips and heels to the top of the cap, not a penny is spared for the event of a lifetime. It’s a place where people come from all over the world to ensure they check this box off their bucket lists.
Although when you walk through the grandstands with your mint julep in hand you have this feeling as though you have stepped into the 1930s, nothing could be further from the truth! Introduce the Internet of Things! As the patrons use their credit cards to withdraw cash from the ATM machines, purchase mementos, and place their bets on the mobile betting units, a large network and cyber security infrastructure are in place. Additional bandwidth is brought in to support the cell phones that will be posting the pictures and videos throughout the day on the various social media outlets around the world. Physical security cameras are pushing multicast traffic to various stations ensuring safety for the dignitaries that wouldn’t miss this event. Media will broadcast via IPTV to hundreds of outlets all over the world. The athletes are monitored throughout the day and leading up to their race: both the jockeys and the horses. Cloud based applications are tracking the diet of the horses, all while big data is being crunched trying to gain that sub-second edge to earn the garland of more than 400 red roses. We could go on and on, however, I think you are getting the point.
This year as you witness the “The Greatest Two Minutes in Sports”, think about all of the technology that is being used to power this spectacular event. Or better yet, sit back and enjoy that emotional moment when the horses step out onto the track for the post parade as “My Old Kentucky Home” plays. And finally, enjoy a few mint juleps! Cheers!