British racing will remain on ITV for the near future after the broadcaster secured a new deal which will last until the end of 2023, according to reports by the Racing Post.
According to the website, the free-to-air broadcaster has signed a revised agreement with Racecourse Media Group, Ascot Racecourse and Arena Racing Company which is reportedly valued between £8m – £9m. This will see the new deal eclipse ITV’s current fee of £7.5m.
The specifics of the contract will remain roughly the same as other agreements with ITV, which will see 94 days of racing broadcast by the company each year. The races will also be split between its main channel and ITV4, depending on the event.
An announcement about the new deal is expected to be released in the near future according to Racing Post sources.
If the new deal is as it seems, then this will be seen as a massive achievement for the racing sector considering all sports have suffered major financial losses as a result of the global health pandemic.
Horseracing in Britain also suffered a major blow when various events had to be cancelled due to COVID-19. However, the sector was not as heavily impacted compared to other sports with the British Horseracing Authority allowing fixtures to resume at the beginning of June.
A deal with ITV was expected to be completed as early as New Year’s Day in 2019. However over the past year and a half, there have been multiple hurdles getting in the way of an extension.
This includes Ascot’s decision to partner with Sky at the beginning of 2019, ITV’s disagreement over a reduction in broadcast fees due to the Grand National’s cancellation, and a streaming rights dispute with Arc.