Land Rover BAR, a racing team competing in the America’s Cup sailing competition, were seeking support as they embarked on their mission to “bring the cup home”. This support would come in the form of tactical aids equipment.
Being part of such a dynamic environment meant that time during a race was at a premium and thus required the need of a good User Experience.
The 2017 iteration of the competition introduced a few complications to the rules, which would require a new way to interpret data, and indeed, how it was presented and utilised during a race. I ran a few discovery workshops with the team (and stakeholders) to identify the opportunities and define the problem we were trying to resolve. I worked with the very best in the industry - including many multi- world and Olympic champions!
Through multiple iterations of effectively A/B testing, I devised a new abstract representation of the course. Although possibly considered counter-intuitive at first, it was quick and easy to use - as stated by principle user, and Olympic gold medalist, Giles Scott:
The tactical app is a really important aid to the decision making process during the racing, providing Ben [Ainslie] and myself with the data that we need.
Giles Scott, Olympic Champion, MBE, and principle user, 24th April 2017
To deliver this experience I led a UX team (8) consisting of researchers, designers and developers. I ran workshops, ethnographic research, initiated ideation through paper-prototyping, and worked with the users to identify improvements.
I then fed this back to the developers where I took the role of SCRUM master. We worked in fortnightly sprints, constantly delivering small iteative improvements, from which we could continue to learn.
One of the more interesting challenges was to retrain the sailors with how they sail - moving away from what they’ve been doing the past to using the app to complement their expert sailing skills. It was really interesting to observe.
More information of this project can be found on the LandRoverBAR archive site.