Sky Sports awarded F1 rights coverage

Sky Sports, along with the BBC, have been awarded the live rights coverage for F1 races from next year.

The new deal will see every F1 race on Sky Sports, with only half on BBC television. All races will be live on BBC Radio 5 Live along with ‘extensive’ highlights of all races across all platforms. The contract comes into effect in 2012 through to 2018.

Sky was awarded broadcast rights alongside the BBC. As the UK’s two leading sports broadcasters, I’m confident that the partnership will bring increased choice, innovation and breadth of coverage to UK and Irish motor racing fans. We’ll offer at least half of the season exclusively lives, with all of the live action in Standard Definition, HD, online, mobile and tablet devices, through Sky Go. The remaining races and qualifying sessions will be shown simultaneously with the BBC, whom will also show highlights of all races they don’t cover live.”  – Barney Francis, Managing Director of Sky Sports

ITV previously held the coverage rights from 1997 – 2008, but many complained that ITV did not give respectable coverage to the sport. It is likely that Sky Sports won’t air commercials during live races from next year, although this is yet to be decided.