In the coronavirus-free round-up, Formula 1 jumps ahead of MotoGP in the Instagram stakes, whilst the BBC have increased their motor sport portfolio with the acquisition of another electric series.
Where possible, Motorsport Broadcasting endeavours to link directly to the original source instead of linking to a third-party site that may have misinterpreted the original headline.
The round-up gives a bite sized view of the latest news making the waves, as well as interesting snippets that I have picked up along the way.
All of the round-ups to date can be found here, and as always, all feedback on the site, positive and negative, is more than welcome.
Formula 1 – contractual arrangements
- Austria – Red Bull broadcaster Servus TV is looking to snatch television rights off ORF when the latter’s contract with F1 expires at the end of 2020, according to an article on the Osterreich website.
- Osterreich expects an announcement following this weekend’s Australian Grand Prix.
- Canada – F1 will continue to air on TSN and RDS after the parties agreed a new deal until the end of the 2024 season.
- As part of the new deal, fans can access additional feeds via the TSN and RDS app. F1 says that last year was the most-watched season ever on TSN, which coverage reaching “nearly 5.3 million Canadian viewers” across the two networks.
- It should be noted that Canadian fans can also watch F1 live through F1’s over-the-top service F1 TV Pro.
- Portugal – Eleven Sports has created an annual pass to allow motor sport fans to watch all of their motor sport content, as well as other sports.
- The pass covers Formula 1, their feeder championships Formula Two and Formula Three, as well as the Porsche Supercup and TCR touring car series.
- The pass costs Portuguese fans just €49.99 across the year, or €4.17 per month. In UK pounds, that works out at £43.79 across the year, or £3.65 per month.
- USA – Mothers Polish will continue to sponsor ESPN’s coverage of Formula 1 until the end of 2022, meaning that American viewers can continue to enjoy F1 without commercial breaks.
Formula 1 – other news
- Over on social media, Formula 1 is now the most popular series on Instagram in terms of the number of followers, overtaking MotoGP towards the end of February. F1 now has 9.00 million followers, whilst the bike series has 8.90 million followers.
- There was recognition for three familiar faces in the broadcasting world at the 2019 British Sports Journalism Awards, held last month.
- Channel 4’s F1 presenter Steve Jones won the award for Sports Presenter of the Year.
- F1 commentator Alex Jacques received the Silver Award for the Broadcast Ones to Watch (on-air).
- Former presenter of ITV’s F1 coverage Jim Rosenthal received the Doug Gardner Award for Services to Sports Journalism and the SJA. Writing on Twitter, Rosenthal said he “never saw it coming,” and that he was “blown away by the reaction.”
- F1 are relaunching their official F1 magazine after a 16-year hiatus. The first iteration of the magazine closed in 2004, but is now being relaunched by owners Liberty Media, with ex-associate editor of F1 Racing magazine James Roberts at the helm.
- The magazine brings together a range of motor racing correspondents including Rebecca Clancy (The Times) and Giles Richards (The Guardian), as well as Oliver Owen (previously The Observer).
- The magazine aims to offer “unrivalled access to the heroes of the sport, with in-depth interviews, exclusives, strong opinion and intelligent summaries.”
- An interesting sub-plot to this is that Lifestyle Media House Limited are publishers of the new magazine. Lifestyle Media were originally meant to be purchasing F1 Racing magazine off Motorsport Network. That deal fell through, and coincidentally, Motorsport Network have since renamed F1 Racing magazine to GP Racing. Read into that what you will…
- Alex Brundle is to join Alex Jacques in the Formula Two commentary box for five weekends this season, he has announced.
- Writing on his Twitter, Brundle says he will partner Jacques for the Bahrain, Dutch, Belgium, Russian and Abu Dhabi rounds this year.
- The BBC is to air live coverage of the new Extreme E series in a “multi-year deal.” The series, which begins in January 2021 sees all-electric SUV cars compete in remote locations around the world.
- Ali Russell, Extreme E’s chief marketing officer, said: “The UK has an insatiable appetite for world-class motor racing and a groundswell of backing for sustainable technologies – particularly pertinent given the government’s plans to bring forward the transition to fully-electric motoring to 2035.”
- James Hinchcliffe is to join NBC’s on-air team for their coverage of the IndyCar Series this year. Hinchcliffe will commentate on ten races this season, the first of which is this weekend in St Petersburg.
- A new look and feel greeted MotoGP fans over the Qatar Grand Prix weekend, with a new graphics set.
- Keep an eye on Motorsport Broadcasting over forthcoming weeks for in-depth analysis on the new package.
- Also on the MotoGP front, the series has teamed up with Facebook, bringing exclusive content to the social media platform. MotoGP says that there will be “original and exclusive” content available on Facebook Watch, and will be between “three and seven minutes in length.”
- The recent series of Top Gear featured an excellent 20-minute segment celebrating 25 years since Colin McRae won the World Rally Championship in his Subaru Impreza 555.
- The segment is available to watch on BBC iPlayer here until March 2021.
- Sky Sports F1 is to air highlights of the inaugural Ultimate Karting Championship. The series kicks off in April, with Jake Sanson providing commentary on the seven events.
- Paul O’Neill will no longer be part of ITV Sport’s BTCC “Social Saturdays” segments across social media, he has confirmed.
- The segments, which were uploaded to ITV Motorsport’s Facebook and Twitter channels, saw O’Neill roam the paddock, bringing fans closer to the sport prior to the main event on Sunday.
- It is unclear if the social segments are continuing with a different host, or if ITV and TOCA have dropped the segment for 2020.
If you have spotted anything else making the rounds that is worth a mention, drop a line in the comments section below.