[Via Satellite 02-04-2016] Hughes Network Systems is sponsoring the U.S. portion of the Yukon Quest, a 1,000 mile international sled dog race, with its HughesNet broadband service. The company will provide high-speed Internet access and Voice Over IP (VoIP) service to enable communication for information such as weather updates, course warnings and other information to make the race safer. The service also enables officials to update results on the website and steadily feed information to fans and media around the world.
Hughes partner Will Johnson, owner of Alaska Satellite Internet, is installing the satellite terminals on the U.S. half of the Yukon Quest trail. Johnson flies the systems to the six U.S. checkpoints — landing on roads when no landing strip is available — sets them up, and will manage network operations throughout the race.
The Yukon Quest officials responsible for major operations during the race —Marshal Doug Grilliot, Manager Alex Olesen, and Head Veterinarian Nina Hansen — will rely on the satellite VoIP service to coordinate operations up and down the course. Telephone access between checkpoints enables them to speak directly to each other and their team members to keep the dogs, mushers, support crews and Yukon Quest staff safe as they cross the Arctic terrain.