Consumer rights

Formula 1 and Walt Disney extend ESPN deal until 2025

AUSTIN, Texas, Oct 22 (Reuters) – Liberty Media-owned Formula One and The Walt Disney Company announced on Saturday an extension of their broadcast partnership, keeping the sport on ESPN networks in the United States until 2025 .

The new three-year deal includes extended direct-to-consumer rights, with details yet to be announced, and more races than before being shown on ESPN and ABC with coverage provided by Sky Sports TV.

ESPN has owned the broadcast rights since 2018, when it took over from NBC Sports, and ratings have risen sharply as the sport takes off in the United States and reaches new and younger audiences.

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Las Vegas will debut next year as the third American race after Austin, which hosts the United States Grand Prix on Sunday at the Circuit of the Americas, and Miami.

Last year was the most-watched season on US television with an average of 949,000 viewers per race, according to Formula 1. That figure rose to 1.2 million on average after 18 of 22 races in 2022.

The first Miami Grand Prix aired on ABC television this year generated an average viewership of 2.6 million viewers, the largest US audience ever for a live Formula 1 race.

Next season is expected to have a record 24 races

“We are delighted to announce that our partnership with ESPN will continue,” Formula 1 chief executive Stefano Domenicali said in a statement.

“Formula 1 has seen incredible growth in the United States with sold-out events and record TV ratings…ESPN networks have played a huge role in this growth with their dedicated quality coverage.”

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Reporting by Alan Baldwin in London, editing by Clare Fallon

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