YLE and L'Equipe sign World Rallycross deals
YLE, the Finnish public-service broadcaster, will show coverage of motor racing’s FIA World Rallycross Championship, the series promoted by IMG, the international sports and entertainment company, after it acquired rights to the series.
Under the one-year deal, YLE is to air at least 50 per cent of the 2018 championship on free-to-air channel television, while other races will be shown on the YLE Areena streaming service.
YLE replaces Nelonen, the commercial broadcaster owned by Nordic media company Sanoma, which held rights to last year’s championship.
Paul Bellamy, World Rallycross managing director for IMG, added: “This is another positive step for World RX in the TV market as we prepare to enter our fifth season as an FIA World Championship. With rallycross growing rapidly in Finland at a grassroots level combined with the growing success of Finnish drivers on the world stage such as Topi Heikkinen, I am very pleased to report that we can repay the loyalty of our Finnish fans with free-to-air TV coverage.”
Elsewhere, coverage of the World Rallycross Championship will continue to be shown in France by L’Equipe after the free-to-air digital terrestrial channel extended its rights agreement until 2020.
L’Equipe has broadcast the championship since the series’ inception in 2014, having acquired the rights in France from the IMG agency.
L’Equipe’s viewers will be able to watch Team Peugeot-Hansen’s French star Sebastien Loeb taking part in the opening stage on 14 April in Barcelona.
• RallyX on Ice, the winter racing series founded by Andreas Eriksson, the chief executive of Swedish racing team Olsbergs, has announced that its 2018 series will be streamed on Motorsport.com, the specialist automotive website.
The 2018 RallyX on Ice championship gets under way this weekend in Östersund, Sweden.