Local News

Cary Company Puts Fans In The Driver's Seat With Virtual Tour

Posted April 3, 2001 7:00 a.m. EDT

— A Cary company makes it possible for you to "virtually" tour a Championship Auto Racing Team's trackside headquarters.

3dvillage offers avirtual tourof the PacWest CART team's Summit Hospitality area. The company made its mark designing online virtual tours of cities like Charleston, universities and tourist spots.

Using your mouse, you can walk through the awning-covered hospitality area.

"They'd be able to click on the kitchen and pull up a menu for the day. They have a chef that travels with them and does an extensive menu," says Greg Meluch of 3dvillage.

Moving along into the team trailer, virtual visitors can peek into the team's computer-driven nerve center. 3dvillage hopes to expand its unique Web-based program to help fans pick their seats in stadiums or tracks.

"3dvillage will be able to take people there and drop them down into the stands and be able to have them look and see exactly what their view is going to be during raceday," Meluch says.

Meluch got some hands-on experience with the PacWest car in preparation for the tour.

"The same car that Mauricio [Gugelmin] was able to set a record last year and go 242 miles an hour, I never got it out of third gear and actually made it up to 83 miles an hour. It was the fastest I felt going," he says.

The PacWest tour is free and will be introduced during the Long Beach Grand Prix this weekend. One of the PacWest team cars is sponsored by Raleigh-based Invensys Powerware Systems.