The coverage of the Repco Supercars Championship from next year’s Formula 1 Australian Grand Prix will be broadcast on Network 10 in April.
Supercars and Formula 1 are broadcast on competing free-to-air networks, which raised questions about how the event would be managed in terms of TV rights.
The Australian Grand Prix, like the Bathurst 1000 and the Melbourne Cup, is covered by anti-siphon laws that require it to be broadcast on an FTA network.
Both categories are broadcast primarily on Fox Sports, where F1 events are typically shown via a 60-minute highlight package Monday night after the 10 Ball event.
Supercars, meanwhile, entered into a new five-year, $ 200 million deal with Fox Sports this year, which has seen FTA coverage done by Seven Network.
“The primary contract is between Formula 1 and Fox Sports, and so they have obligations due to anti-slander legislation to broadcast our event on free-to-air,” Australian Grand Prix Corporation CEO Andrew Westacott explained to Speedcafe.com.
“Now I leave the interaction between these networks and everything up to the networks and Fox Sports.
“What I can guarantee is that Supercars will be a championship round and will be broadcast as part of the Channel 10 coverage for fans on free-to-air, and they are an incredibly important part of the event.”
As a championship event, the coverage is expected to be produced by Supercars Media, meaning Neil Crompton and Mark Skaife’s typical on-air talent will provide commentary.
Albert Park became only a point-paying part of the 2018 Supercars season, making next year’s event the first time a championship round will be broadcast on a network other than its usual FTA home.
Next year’s Australian GP will boast a revised layout where works see it officially reduced from 16 to 14 corners after the harassment on Lakeside Drive was effectively circumvented.
Sections of the course have also been widened in an attempt to encourage alternative lines through a corner, along with reprofiling of a number of corners – particularly turns 6 and 13.
Speedcafe.com revealed in October that Supercars is set to stand on its head on the sub-map at the Albert Park event, which is in the final stages of completing its support program.
It looks like it will be the third round of the championship, which opens in Newcastle on 4-6. March ahead of an expected outing to the Symmons Plains on the final weekend of the month before landing in Melbourne.
The Formula 1 2022 campaign, meanwhile, starts with two events in the Middle East; first with the Bahrain Grand Prix and then the Saudi Arabia Grand Prix.