Boston, MA (May 6, 2015)—Held on April 20, this year’s Boston Marathon attracted thousands of amateur runners, but it also had a radio communications infrastructure for the roughly 300 communication volunteers at the event. Created by an amateur radio communications steering committee, the infrastructure utilized XLR radio connectivity solutions drawn from Neutrik USA.
Matthew Forman is the infrastructure lead for the amateur radio communications steering committee. Now in his fourth year volunteering, his pre-race responsibilities included establishing the necessary infrastructure for an amateur radio communications system along the entire course, including overseeing the allocation of all amateur radio frequencies and making certain that communication workflows and the equipment to execute those workflows were available and established. During Marathon Monday itself, Forman oversaw the communications for the event’s non-emergency medical sweep bus program, which provides injured runners who drop out of the race a way to get to their loved ones, taking them to the Finish area.
“In addition to the medical and hydration stations, we have large teams at both the Start and Finish areas that support both logistical and medical centric radio communications,” Forman explained. “Many of our responsibilities are, in some way, related to the medical needs of a runner at any one time, such as the wheelchair teams at the Finish or mobile medical teams at the Start. It’s critically important that the pathways that carry audio, low voltage power, and control data for our infrastructure function reliably.
“To make certain that the various lines function reliably and consistently,” Forman continued, “we use Neutrik XX Series XLR connectors. Both the 6- and 7-pin models provide a robust, fast, and locking connection that inspires confidence…. Additionally while it may not seem quite as important, Neutrik connectors have a very rugged and professional appearance. A lot of Amateur Radio equipment, especially temporary deployments, can look ‘hacked together’ but not with Neutrik…they also help us maintain the confidence of the Boston Athletic Association and the various State and Federal organizations involved in this endeavor.”
In all, the amateur radio communications steering committee looked after thousands of feet of cables and adapters combined with more than 250 Neutrik connectors tying all the equipment together. “The 2015 Boston Marathon was an amazing race and enabled the Amateur Radio Community to, once again, display its communication prowess. As radio communicators who can find ourselves conveying critical information on tight deadlines, we can only be as good as our equipment. I am happy to say that Neutrik helped ensure our temporary infrastructure performed well and reliably. Neutrik’s superior build quality, reliability, cost effectiveness, and widespread availability make it the brand we can trust and rely upon.”
Boston Marathon Amateur Radio Volunteers