The deciding final race of the Formula 1 season will be shown live on free to air terrestrial television this Sunday (12.12.21) after Sky agreed to share its coverage with Channel 4.
Thanks to the deal struck between the two broadcasters, the British public will be able to savour every twist and turn as Lewis Hamilton sets his sights on taking a record-breaking eighth World Championship title in the winner-takes-all finale.
Channel 4’s Chief Executive Alex Mahon said: “We are delighted that the whole nation will be able to watch what is set to be one of the most thrilling finales to an F1 season in living memory as Lewis strives to become the most crowned World Champion of all time.
“After bringing Test cricket to free to air television for the first time in more than a decade, and enabling millions to share the joy of Emma Raducanu’s US Open triumph, we are so pleased to be partnering with Sky to enable the widest possible audience to share this historic sporting moment.”
Stephen van Rooyen, EVP & CEO UK & Europe Sky said: “Sunday’s Grand Prix is one of the biggest sporting events in the last decade, and could be an historic moment for British sport. We’ve chosen to gift the race to the whole country at Christmas through our partnership with Channel 4, so everyone can be part of a huge national moment as Lewis Hamilton goes for a historic eighth World Championship title.
“The brilliant Sky Sports Formula 1 team will give viewers on Channel 4 and Sky Sports the best insight, commentary and analysis of every twist and turn of this most eagerly anticipated final race of the season. Additionally all Sky TV customers will have live coverage of the important qualifying session on Saturday, and the race on Sunday – which we will also show live on Sky Showcase.”
Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen are tied on 369.5 points each with Verstappen currently leading the Drivers’ Championship having secured a total of nine wins, one more than Hamilton’s eight.
This year has witnessed crashes, controversies and collisions between the two drivers and set up a mouth-watering grandstand finish to the 2021 Formula 1 season.
Under the terms of the deal, Channel 4 will broadcast Sky’s production of the live race coverage with its presenting team of Nico Rosberg, Jenson Button, Martin Brundle, Nat Pinkham, David Croft, Karun Chandhok, Simon Lazenby and Ted Kravitz.
Channel 4’s team of Steve Jones, David Coulthard, Mark Webber and Lee McKenzie will provide build up to the race for 15 minutes from midday before handing over to Sky for their pre-race coverage and Sky’s live coverage of the race itself.
After the podium ceremony Channel 4’s presentation team will return to give its instant reaction to the race before a full Channel 4 highlights programme producer by Whisper airs at 5.30pm.
This latest deal follows on from a recent announcement that Channel 4 would broadcast ten live Super League matches each season for the next two years thanks to a partnership with Sky. It is the first time in the competition’s 26-year history that it will be shown on free to air terrestrial television.
This is the latest in a string of sports broadcasts secured by Channel 4 which have included: live coverage of Emma Raducanu’s stunning US Open victory; live British Lions rugby; live Test match cricket coverage of England’s tour in India; live coverage of the Ireland rugby union autumn internationals; and live in-depth coverage of the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games which attracted 20 million viewers.