International boat racing series SailGP has announced that its upcoming Australia Sail Grand Prix event will be available free-to-air domestically via public broadcaster Special Broadcasting Service (SBS).
The event is already scheduled to be aired in the country on pay-TV Fox Sports network, as well as for free on the “freebies” portion of its Kayo over-the-top streaming service, but will now also be available on the SBS network and its SBS On Demand streaming service as well.
Alongside the 90-minute race broadcast that SBS will air live on both race days, SBS will also showcase highlight packages for the remaining five Grand Prix events of the 2023-24 season.
SailGP’s increased presence in Australia, alongside the event itself, coincides with the success of Australia’s SailGP team, which is among the prime competitors for the 2023-24 title, having won all three previous editions of the racing series that began in 2019.
Tom Slingsby, chief executive and captain of the Australia SailGP team since its foundation praised the increased coverage of the event in his native country, stating: “This collaboration marks a significant milestone for the league and by joining forces with SBS, we are ensuring that the excitement of SailGP will be experienced by a wider audience, making our sport truly accessible to all.
“This month’s event will mark the record fifth time that our racing has been staged on our iconic Sydney Harbour. This partnership with SBS highlights the continued growth of the league in Australia and our promise to deliver great sporting moments to Australians."
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The event, taking place across February 24-25 in Sydney harbor, is title-sponsored by international accountancy firm KPMG.
SailGP has enjoyed strong viewership growth thus far in its fourth season, most notably in the US, where its Sapin Sail Grand Prix averaged a record domestic broadcast audience of 1.78 million viewers.
The event, broadcast on the US national network CBS in the country, was the most-watched sailing race in the US since 1992, with a marked viewership growth in the country of 9% on last year’s Spain Sail Grand Prix, which drew a then-record 1.6 million viewers.