Despite the opening races of the 2020 season taking place without spectators, Formula 1 will not be showing extra races on free-to-air TV.
Despite fans not being able to attend Formula 1 Grands Prix for the short-term future, no additional races will be shown on free-to air television stations throughout 2020.
With Formula 1 now having confirmed an eight race calendar, kicking off with two races at Austria’s Red Bull Ring in July, more races are expected to be added to the calendar to fill out the months to conclude the season in December.
Sky Sports F1 retain the exclusive rights to show Formula 1 races for the UK and Ireland market, with free-to-air coverage restricted to highlights on Channel 4, with occasional races such as the British Grand Prix being shown to an unrestricted audience.
With two races set to take place in Austria, and another double header taking place at Silverstone, just the event known as the ‘British Grand Prix’ (the first of the two races) will be shown on Channel 4. The second race, dubbed the ’70th Anniversary Grand Prix’, will not be shown, and will only be available on Sky Sports F1.
F1 released a statement, confirming its intent to keep races behind a paywall despite crowds being unable to attend races: “F1 has existing contracts in place for broadcast and it is right we honour those commitments with our long-term partners.”
“Silverstone will host two events, with one of those events available live as Free-to-air (FTA) within the UK. Each market situation is different and has comprehensive highlight packages to complement the live broadcast of the races.”
F1 outlined in its strategic plan to ensure a safe return to racing that broadcast stations will operate remotely and will not need to attend races.
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