• Broadcast rights

Sky and BBC in joint deal

ESPNF1 Staff
July 29, 2011 « Webber predicts close battle | »
The BBC has been broadcasting Formula One exclusively since 2009 © Getty Images

Sky will broadcast all Formula One races live from 2012 to 2018, in a joint rights deal as the BBC scales back its coverage.

The BBC will only show 10 races per season, including the British Grand Prix, the Monaco Grand Prix and the season finale. It initially had exclusive rights from 2009 until 2013, but that has now been altered to allow it to extend its contract but with reduced airtime. Formula One has always been on free-to-air television in the UK, but for the first time viewers will only be able to watch the whole season on satellite.

The BBC has announced that every practice and qualifying session for the races it is broadcasting live will also be shown as it has been this season, while highlights will be available for those races it is not showing live. Barbara Slater, director of BBC Sport, said that the deal was important in saving money but allowing the BBC to extend its deal.

"We are absolutely delighted that F1 will remain on the BBC," Slater said. "The sport has never been more popular with TV audiences at a 10-year high and the BBC has always stated its commitment to the big national sporting moments. With this new deal not only have we delivered significant savings but we have also ensured that through our live and extended highlights coverage all the action continues to be available to licence-fee payers."

Barney Francis, managing director of Sky Sports, promised to deliver even better coverage than previously seen.

"This is fantastic news for F1 fans and Sky Sports will be the only place to follow every race live and in HD," Francis said. "We will give F1 the full Sky Sports treatment with a commitment to each race never seen before on UK television."