ITV to broadcast all F1 sessions live online this year

ITV will show free practice, qualifying and races live on the internet this year.

I have criticised ITV for various shortcomings in their production in the past but this is definitely a step forward and I applaud them for it.

It’s not clear whether it will be available to those outside of Britain but I don’t think it’s very likely. They also haven’t said whether the coverage will be interrupted by adverts. But simply getting to see practice live when it was never broadcast before in Britain is a step forwards.

However ITV’s video player is not Apple Macintosh compatible, which will prevent a minority of viewers from being able to watch.

Fans will also be able to re-watch races up to 30 days after they have aired. A spokesperson for Formula One Management said:

With UK Formula 1 audiences reaching their highest levels in many years, it gives us great pleasure to fuel this resurgence further with the introduction of online rights to complement ITV’s broadcast coverage.

ITV’s F1 audience grew by 40% in Britain last year as Lewis Hamilton led the championships standings for much of the year.

To find out what times all the sessions are happening in Britain, see the list of races at the bottom of this page. Here are the times for the Australian Grand Prix.

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48 comments on ITV to broadcast all F1 sessions live online this year

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  1. Robert McKay said on 13th March 2008, 14:47

    All that complaining about Youtube paying off now?

    Either way, excellent news.

  2. Scootin159 said on 13th March 2008, 14:56

    I really doubt this will be available outside of the UK, but I really hope it is.  Every year there’s a set of 4-5 races which get aired on a major network here (FOX), and as such need to conform to the major network’s advertising and audience practices… i.e., it must be "dumbed down" so that even the NASCAR fans can understand it, must have 12 minutes of commercials per 30 minutes of air time, and must fit within the allocated 120.0 minute time slice (aka… tape delayed & cropped to fit for time).

    oh… and if NASCAR truck practice runs long due to rain… then we need to cover the rain delay, not F1 (aka 2007 Brazilian GP).

    sooo… as bad as you feel your coverage is… there’s times where I would love to have it here :).

  3. Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine) said on 13th March 2008, 15:00

    if NASCAR truck practice runs long due to rain… then we need to cover the rain delay, not F1 (aka 2007 Brazilian GP).

    Ouch… you have my sympathy!

  4. Fred B said on 13th March 2008, 16:05

    What video player will they be using?  Will it not be streaming Flash video?

  5. Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine) said on 13th March 2008, 16:15

    I don’t know if they’ll be using their normal video player or some other solution to handle the streaming.

  6. Scootin159 said on 13th March 2008, 16:21

    FWIW, I just tested & verified that their normal video player DOES work in the US.

  7. TommyBellingham said on 13th March 2008, 16:31

    Other way round actually.

    "Live online streaming of Friday practice – not currently available to UK audiences"

  8. Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine) said on 13th March 2008, 16:31

    I hate to be a Negative Nancy (TM) but they will have some kind of block in place to stop foreign viewers seeing it. But equally I’m sure some enterprising individuals can get around it… any thoughts how?

  9. Scootin159 said on 13th March 2008, 16:34

    Easiest way would be to connect through a proxy server in the UK.

  10. Fred B said on 13th March 2008, 17:20

    Their normal video player is Flash and should therefore run on any platform (Windows, Mac, Linux).  Let’s hope they use it for the live broadcasts!

  11. Do they make any money out of this, i.e. through ads? If they don’t its a great thing to do for F1 viewers everywhere.

  12. Fred B said on 13th March 2008, 17:27

    "The deal will also be a boon for Sony, which has signed to sponsor ITV’s coverage, as the coverage made available online will automatically carry its advertising and sponsorship idents."
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/media/2008/mar/13/itv.television

  13. Scootin159 said on 13th March 2008, 17:32

    Their normal video player is Flash and should therefore run on any platform (Windows, Mac, Linux). Let’s hope they use it for the live broadcasts!

    Doesn’t even work under windows with Firefox. At least for me it appears to be Win/IE only.

  14. Fred B said on 13th March 2008, 17:35

    It is working for me in Firefox on Vista.

    Maybe you need the latest version of Adobe Flash installed (Flash 9.0 r115)?

  15. Keith,   You´re right. I´m from Brazil and my server has no permission to access the contents… But I remember that Steven put some links here that could help a little…

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