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Virgin announce Sky F1 deal

On Monday it was finally announced that the standard definition version of Sky Sports F1 channel will be available to Sky Sports subscribers via Virgin Media.

From next season Sky Sports will be the only place in the United Kingdom which will show every single practice session, qualifying and race live.

Towards the end of 2011, Sky Sports announced that they will be launching a brand new dedicated Formula One channel [Sky Sports F1 HD] and also confirmed their presentation team which includes Martin Brundle, David Croft, Anthony Davidson, Natalie Pinkham, Ted Kravitz, Simon Lazenby and Georgie Thompson.

Sky Sports confirmed that the qualifying and the races will be advert free and the Sky Sports F1HD channel will be available to their Sky Sports 1 and 2 customers as well as their Sky HD subscribers.

However they hadn't announced details of how Virgin Media, BT Vision and Top Up TV customers could obtain the channel until this week, when Virgin Media announced a new deal with Sky.

Virgin Media executive director of digital entertainment Cindy Rose said in a press release: “We’re delighted to be able to offer this new channel right from the off as it’s certain to be an exciting Formula 1TM season with a record number of races and six former or current world champions racing for the title.”

While Sky commercial group director Rob Webster added: “As the new home of the world’s most exciting motorsport series, Formula 1TM is going to get the full Sky Sports treatment. Extending the distribution of our dedicated channel is great news for all Sky Sports subscribers, enabling millions of pay TV homes to enjoy the benefits of our innovative coverage and investment in must-see content.”

Due to financial reasons it looks unlikely that a similar deal could be struck with either BT Vision or Top Up TV.

Both do currently carry Sky Sports 1 and 2, but would only be able to offer Sky Sports F1 if they purchased an additional Freeview channel which is unlikely to prove cost affective.

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The Journalist

Writer: Red5 Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Tuesday January 17 2012

Time: 11:00AM


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