British Eurosport has signed a three-year deal to show live coverage of FIM World Speedway events.
The new deal guarantees UK television coverage of the FIM Speedway World Championships, FIM Speedway Grand Prix series and Monster Energy FIM Speedway World Cup until the end of 2015, after previous rights holders Sky Sports dropped the events at the end of 2012.
The 2013 season starts with live coverage of the New Zealand leg of the FIM Speedway Grand Prix series on Saturday, March 23, at 3.00am GMT with repeats and highlights throughout the weekend.
British Eurosport will cover all rounds of the 12 race individual world championship, including the British FIM Speedway Grand Prix from the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff on Saturday, June 1.
The deal also includes the right to broadcast the team world championship – the Monster Energy FIM Speedway World Cup – that takes place from 13-20 July across Europe.
British Eurosport’s coverage will take the world feed commentary team of Nigel Pearson and Kelvin Tatum.
Sky Sports previously held the rights to FIM world speedway events for over a decade, but decided against renewing its broadcast contract at the end of the 2012 season, reportedly due to poor viewing figures.
There were doubts about UK coverage of the events until Eurosport stepped in to secure a broadcast deal.
British Eurosport is available on Sky and Virgin Media in the UK and later in March will also be available on BT Vision in the UK.
David Kerr, managing director of British Eurosport, said, “We are really excited to add the FIM Speedway World Championships to our existing 45 round coverage of MotoGP, World and British Superbikes.
“Speedway will add a brand new discipline to our year round motorbike coverage and strengthens our position as the ‘Home of Bikes’.”
The new Eurosport deal was signed in conjunction with BSI Speedway, which is part of the motorsports division of IMG Worldwide.
Paul Bellamy, managing director of BSI Speedway, said, “We are entering exciting times for both the FIM Speedway Grand Prix and the Monster Energy FIM Speedway World Cup and we are thrilled they will sit alongside other world class motorcycling disciplines on British Eurosport.
“We look forward to working alongside the British Eurosport team and welcoming them into the speedway family.
He added: “I am sure the speedway fans, who have been waiting patiently for confirmation of the new UK broadcaster, will look forward to catching all the action on the channel that is now, undoubtedly, the home of bikes on TV.”
Viewers can also get access to the channel via the Eurosport Player, a subscription player service available on PC, iPhone, iPad and Android devices as well as some connected televisions.
British Eurosport’s full television schedule can be accessed via tv.eurosport.co.uk.
FIM Speedway Grand Prix – All LIVE on British EurosportSaturday 23rd March Auckland, New Zealand – Round 1 Saturday 20th April Bydgoszcz, Poland – Round 2 Saturday 4th May Gothenburg, Sweden – Round 3 Saturday 18th May Prague, Czech Republic – Round 4 Saturday 1st June Cardiff, Great Britain – Round 5 Saturday 15th June Gorzów Wielkopolski, Poland – Round 6 Saturday 29th June Copenhagen, Denmark – Round 7 Saturday 3rd August Terenzano, Italy – Ronud 8 Saturday 17th August Daugavpils, Latvia – Round 9 Saturday 7th September Krško, Slovenia – Round 10 Saturday 21st September Stockholm, Sweden – Round 11 Saturday 5th October Toruń, Poland – Round 12