FANS of the FIA World Rally Championship in Australia will be treated to more than 15 hours of spectacular coverage on free-to-air television in 2018, following an agreement with the Seven Network announced today.
PHOTO: 7mate will bring dazzling WRC action and high drama to Australian television screens (Jeremy Rogers/Rally Australia pic)
The national 7mate channel will broadcast one-hour highlights from every round, plus live coverage of the championship finale at Kennards Hire Rally Australia on the Coffs Coast on 15-18 November.
Rally Australia Chairman Ben Rainsford said the deal was great news for Australian WRC fans, who had not enjoyed regular free-to-air coverage for several years.
“Rally Australia is excited to partner with the Seven Network and 7mate. Seven is a pioneer of motorsport television and will bring many new fans to the WRC,” Rainsford said.
“With the WRC in its 26th season in Australia and after an incredibly exciting contest with faster new cars in 2017, 7mate is launching its coverage as enthusiasm for the sport continues to grow.
“7mate will show action from 13 countries with conditions ranging from ice and snow to high altitude, European tarmac and bush gravel. With official teams from four of the world’s biggest car makers and some of the fastest – and bravest – drivers on the planet, every rally serves up dazzling action, close competition and high drama.”
Seven Network Head of Sport Saul Shtein welcomed the new relationship with the WRC.
“Motorsport fans are in for a rollicking good time as they settle in to watch 7mate’s coverage of the Rally Championship. It’s fast and dangerous, featuring drivers with incredible skills,” he said.
Rally Guanajuato Mexico will be the first WRC round shown on 7mate, on Wednesday 28 March, with encore broadcasts scheduled on 29 March and 31 March. Remaining rounds will be scheduled for first runs on Wednesdays after each event.
At Kennards Hire Rally Australia, at least 4.5 hours’ weekend coverage is expected to feature three live stages, including the season-ending Power Stage, a high-drama, points-paying shootout that may decide the overall outcome of the event or the season.
WRC programming will be complemented by coverage of the CAMS Australian Rally Championship and BFGoodrich CAMS Australian Off Road Championship, which also are included in the 7mate schedule.