TOPTRACER Technology is here

by Dan M | Posted on Saturday, February 17th, 2018

If you watched the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am last weekend you saw the TopTracer technology being utilized to track ball flight. TopTracer (originally called ProTracer) is a camera-based system that tracks ball flight and adds on-screen graphics to make trajectory and shot-
shaping visible to viewers thus enhancing televised golf coverage. It has become an integral part of the broadcast experience, having been featured in coverage of numerous prestigious tournaments including the Open Championship, Ryder Cup and PGA Championship.
The TopTracer was conceived by a Swedish entrepreneur named Daniel Forsgren in 2006.
As a golf instructor, utilizing this type of high technology helps validate and showcase what I am teaching as it gives immediate feedback to the student. They can see exactly how far they are hitting the ball with true carry and roll plus see ball speed numbers, launch angles, height, landing angle, side deviation, hang time and much more.
I was first introduced to this fascinating technology (when it was known as ProTracer) by my friend Mauricio Galante. Mauricio is the innovative, Brazilian born, owner of the Golf Center of Arlington and was the first person to bring this incredible technology to north Texas. Topgolf acquired ProTracer in May 2016 and rebranded it as TopTracer. Galante mentioned that outside of his facility in Arlington the only other two places that currently have TopTracer available is Top Golf Dallas, The Colony and Woodhaven Country Club.
During my visit with Mauricio I and asked him how he got involved with TopTracer?
MG:  Back in 2014 when I purchased the property I was trying to figure a way to give instant feedback to my customers. I imagined all sorts of ways like hanging cameras on the netting and sides having their images wirelessly transmitted to TV’s on the bays. Then I first came across the ProTracer in January of 2014 at the Tournament of Champions which was the first time they televised it on the PGA Tour. Instantly I said to myself who are those guys? I found the company’s website on-line and spoke with them asking if they had this technology available to driving ranges? They told me they just do telecasts for TV. I asked them when you have this available for driving ranges please contact me. Ten months later I get a call from them. We scheduled for them to come to Texas in late February or early March in 2015, but we couldn’t install it because of all the non- stop rains and flooding here in Texas for months. So we ended up installing it in October of 2015. Technically, I should be the first one to install their technology in the United States, but they ended up installing in Columbus, Ohio a few weeks before me because we didn’t have the perfect weather to put it in. However, we are the first ones in Texas.
TW:  Can you explain what the difference is between the ProTracer and the TopTracer?
MG:  The technology is basically the same its just been improved. It’s an optical system with two cameras side by side and they are 100 feet apart. They track everything in between that 100 feet. They are connected to a server and computer that does all the calculations. So when the golf ball goes up the cameras track the shots and exchanges information about speeds, trajectory, launch angle and everything. When ProTracer first started that information was wirelessly connected to I-Pads on each bay. At that time it was taking 3 seconds to get the information after the golfer had hit their shot. Now that information is hard wired with 6 cables so as soon as you hit the shot there is no delay whatsoever.
TW:  What kind of feedback are you receiving from golfers that use it?
MG:  Fantastic feedback! Everyone has only had great things to say about it.
TW:  Tell me about the corporate and group events that you host at your facility and how does TopTracer play a part of it?

MG:  I just received a phone call where he have an outing tonight for 20 people. Every week we have a couple of them and its growing. I’m remolding the facility just to accommodate these types of events. We’ve had groups sizes ranging from 20 people to 160 people. Initially, the driving range was a high quality practice facility, but it’s also becoming a big social gathering event venue. Plus, with TopTracer there are 6 different games available and the ability to play virtual golf courses. The system is faster and more accurate, plus more games. The games are attracting a lot more people than before. People are finding out they can play 18 holes almost identical to playing a golf course excluding the cart ride and walking to the next shot. So you just hit your shot and move on to the next one. Since I’ve put in the TopTracer at my facility TopTracer Range bays have brought in a staggering 205% more revenue than my regular stalls.
Mauricio told me how Topgolf invited him to Orlando late last month for the PGA International Golf Show. He was there acting as a brand ambassador for them to help promote their technology with the TopTracer because he knows so much from a firsthand perspective.
TW:  How was your trip to the recent PGA show in Orlando where you were a guest of Topgolf?
MG:  It was a pleasure to help them get the word out. I had the opportunity to talk and explain the TopTracer system to a lot of driving range owners how the technology works and other important details like the installation. Also, I was able to talk to them about different type of business models that would help them to catapult their business to the next level like I did here at my place. I found that people attending that I spoke to were initially apprehensive, but were very excited at the same time. I felt there was a little bit of fear of the unknown because this is so new. I found that the people I spoke with were very interested in the type of business they can generate and understand what the technology is for their customers. I’m a really big believer in the system and I think 5 years from now if a driving range doesn’t have this kind of system I think it will be really hard for them to compete. It is the future! Topgolf has changed the ball game and is now doing a massive marketing effort now to reach out to everybody to explain what the system and technology is and the requirements to install into their driving ranges. Topgolf has become a culture within golf. A city with a smaller population might not be able to afford a Topgolf facility because it won’t sustain itself, but it can have the Topgolf technology which is the TopTracer to offer for the people living in that area. This way people can get a taste of the technology and this helps to bring more customers to their golf facility and it’s a win-win for everyone. It was ProTracer first in Sweden and they have an outstanding technical team there. There system is super reliable because in the two years now I might have had the down time of maybe a half a day and it was my fault because I had a lightning strike on the property that took some connections away.  When Topgolf acquired them they have been wonderful to deal with because they are super professional people who know what they are doing. If there is anything coming up in the golf industry they are into it because they’re forward thinkers. I’m glad to do business with people like them that are straightforward, clear, transparent and price wise you can’t complain. I think their system is very affordable for any driving range that is trying to invest into furthering their business. Topgolf wanted to take the golf range experience to the next level with their TopTracer technology. All I can say is it’s been a real pleasure doing business with Topgolf.”
Now that golfers are learning that TopTracer technology is available in the DFW area they need to take advantage of this incredible opportunity. So grab your clubs and tell your friends and head over today to the aforementioned locations to check it out. I can tell you from my own personal experience you’ll have a blast.
To learn more about the TopTracer technology visit their website and be sure to look for Mauricio Galante’s appearance in the videos.
Tom can be contacted at

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