In a sign that Network Ten is cutting through it’s big dollar deals in the wake of the collapse and imminent sale of the business it appears they’ve negotiated a better deal for Fox Sports viewers on their F1 rights deal.

Fox Sports has just announced that every F1 race from now on will be shown live and commercial free.

For most viewers this won’t seem like much of a change, however if you cast your mind back to March for the Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix you’ll remember that due to the rights sub-licensing deal with Ten, Foxtel were required to show the Network Ten commercial content to their viewers.

Fox sports did this by putting a split screen arrangement in place during the ads, so we could still see – but not hear the action.

No more.  The Australian Grand Prix will be the only F1 event Network Ten will broadcast, and Fox Sports now have the rights to show it live and commercial free as they choose.

The commercial details have not been made public, but one can assume that Network Ten have taken a larger chunk of cash from Foxtel for their broadcast rights, while likely retaining the overall broadcast deal with Formula One Management (FOM).  Network Ten retaining that deal would mean no requirement from either party to renegotiate directly with FOM which could result in a higher fee.

FOX SPORTS CEO Patrick Delany said: “FOX SPORTS will ensure Formula 1 fans in Australia can continue to watch every practice, qualifying and race live.

“And from next season, we will be able to deliver even better coverage with no ad-breaks during racing for every race on the F1 calendar including the Australian Grand Prix. 

It’s great news for Fox Sports subscribers, but crap news for the Free-to-air viewers.

Those without Fox Sports can sign up for access through Foxtel Now – the minimum cost for F1 is $39, a $10 entry pack with the $29 sports pack on top.


We are awaiting confirmation and comment from Network Ten.