Professional sailboat racer finds a winner in the Mesa 2 Rugged Tablet

MOD 70 Argo Mesa 2 Rugged Tablet

Sometimes on the open ocean, you might find Anderson Reggio wrestling with a 70-foot high-performance trimaran sailboat called Argo as it tears through salt-water waves at speeds of around 30 knots propelled only by the whipping wind.

“It’s an endurance test,” Reggio says of racing sailboats. “You sleep in 15-minute increments – when it’s convenient. You go 24 hours a day. You‘re pushing yourself to an extreme to get there safely and quickly. You’re constantly tweaking the boat to get an extra tenth of a knot of speed.”

anderson reggio Mesa 2 Rugged Tablet

Reggio travels the blue globe as a professional sailboat navigator to compete for speed records and racing accolades against other elite sailboat programs. It’s Reggio’s job, then, to build and manage a host of onboard data systems that provide critical information about performance, weather, and location to the crew.

“The electronics on these boats are very complicated,” Reggio says. “Lots of high-tech sensors that provide numerical performance feedback and weather condition data. It is all translated through the central command.”

The central command on Argo consists of a hardwired ruggedized computer and wireless network that congregates the data and blasts it on deck to a Mesa 2 Rugged Tablet by Juniper Systems. The Mesa 2, which runs Windows 10 or Android, can remotely control electronics systems and the tablet’s internal high-accuracy GPS provides a redundant offshore marine navigation system from the deck of the sailboat.

“It’s lightweight, ergonomic, daylight-readable, actually ruggedized, and has a big swappable battery.”

Anderson Reggio

“The central command is an incredibly complex system, and the ideal solution for the tablet portion of the system is ruggedized, daylight-viewable, can get tossed around and banged up pretty hard, and works well in a wet marine environment,” Reggio says. “The Mesa 2 integrates seamlessly via Wi-Fi, and it takes all of the info we need on the boat and puts it in the hands of the navigator.”

The data plays a crucial role in decision making on embattled professional sailboats as they fight against wind, weather, and competitors to slice through the open ocean at speeds that were unimaginable when Reggio started sailing.

Reggio grew up in Connecticut where as a kid he opted for sailing as other kids played little league baseball.

As he grew older and moved to Newport, Rhode Island, a fixture city in the professional sailing world, his amateur hobby morphed into a profession aboard cutting-edge sailboats and superyachts. He now spends around 200 days a year on the water. Aboard the Argo in 2019, Reggio helped set a new course record during the 2019 Pineapple Cup Montego Bay Race, beating the previous record for the 811-mile race by nearly 10 hours.

“It’s not a resume-based job,” Reggio says. “It’s reputation-based. Everyone knows everyone else and your reputation walks into a room five minutes before you do.”

Owners of high-performance sailboat programs – like the MOD 70 Argo program – enlist a crew from a small pool of top-tier sailing professionals who freelance with a variety of sailboat teams. On Team Argo, Reggio works as the team’s navigator to build and manage its complex electronics systems.

Reggio says his six-year search for a rugged tablet that had resulted in tradeoffs ended when a British navigator recommended the Mesa 2.

“It’s lightweight, ergonomic, daylight-readable, actually ruggedized, and has a big swappable battery,” Reggio says. “You get 15 hours at max brightness and charge it in two hours with a 12-volt outlet.”

Reggio says the reputation of Mesa 2 has begun to spread in the sailing community – with his help.

“I’ve been proud to push the Mesa 2 for the past year – ever since it wound up on my doorstep,” Reggio says. “We’re very reliant on the electronics system to be stable and function so that tablet is crucial. And if we’re collectively better, the game is better.”

And making the game better is what Reggio loves to do.

“It’s loud. It’s wet. It’s scary. Sometimes it’s very scary. You push to the edge to win. It’s what you have to do,” he says about sailing.

For more information on the Mesa 2 Rugged Tablet, contact us here. Visit Juniper Systems online.

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