ITV to show UK horse racing until 2026
March 14, 2023
By Colin Mann
UK commercial broadcaster ITV has agreed a new three year deal to show exclusive, free to air coverage of UK horse racing until the end of 2026.
Well over 100 days of live coverage will be shown across ITV1 and ITV4 each year – all simulcast on ITVX – along with morning racing programme The Opening Show.
The deal encompasses UK racing’s Crown Jewel events with the Grand National, the Cheltenham Festival, Royal Ascot and the Derby all featuring.
Announced at the start of the Cheltenham Festival 2023, the new contract extends ITV’s current racing coverage, which began in 2017 and has seen viewing increase across the board, including for major events with average audiences for the Cheltenham Festival climbing by more than a third overall and more than 50 per cent for young viewers compared with the previous broadcaster and record figures for individual days regularly registered.
“This deal will take us to a decade of racing on ITV and we’re delighted to be able to continue to bring to viewers well over 100 days of live coverage of this wonderful sport, including some of the most enjoyable, storied and thrilling events of each year,” commented Niall Sloane, ITV Director of Sport. “We look forward to continuing to work with Racecourse Media Group and our other partners within racing to bring audiences the very best racing has to offer in the coming years.”
“On behalf of our racecourses, we are delighted to have cemented our relationship with ITV for a further three years,” added Martin Stevenson, CEO of Racecourse Media Group. “ITV have been an excellent partner for the sport, providing more terrestrial coverage here in the UK than in any other racing jurisdiction in the world, illustrating both the commitment of the broadcaster and the enduring popularity of the sport.”
ITV Sport’s portfolio of sports events also includes Six Nations rugby, the Rugby World Cup, England Women football team matches, the FA Cup, EFL highlights including the Sky Bet Championship, Sky Bet League One, Sky Bet League Two, Carabao Cup and the Papa John’s Trophy, the Tour de France, the NFL, Heineken Champions Cup, Aviva Premiership Rugby, in motorsport, Extreme E, plus British Touring Car Championships and MotoGP and major competitions in snooker and darts.