Ex-Formula 1 driver David Coulthard has been confirmed as the first member of Channel 4’s presenting team for the 2016 Formula 1 season coverage.
After the BBC ended its television contract three years early, as part of savings across the corporation, Channel 4 stepped in with a three-year deal from 2016. Coulthard was part of the BBC’s presenting team for the last six seasons.
Head of TV events and sport at Channel 4, Ed Harvard said, “We are delighted that David Coulthard will be at the heart of Channel 4’s coverage and look forward to announcing the full presenting team in the coming weeks.”
Whisper Films gained the production contract for Channel 4’s F1 coverage, with a number of BBC production staff forming the team. Whisper Films was set up in 2010 by Coulthard, former BBC F1 presenter Jake Humphrey and former BBC Sport F1 producer Sunil Patel.
“The F1 world has been incredibly impressed with what Whisper has delivered over the last five years and Channel 4’s decision is testament to that,” said Coulthard. “I’m looking forward to being part of an exciting new era for Formula 1, with Whisper Films and our proven level of creativity and innovation very much at the heart of that.”
Executive producer for Whisper Films Patel added, “Whisper Films has an unrivalled production team with over 20 years’ experience in Formula 1 and unique contacts throughout the sport. Channel 4 and the sport have talked about a new approach and we believe we are ideally placed to deliver this.”
Channel 4 will only be screening 10 live grands prix with the remainder as highlights on the channel.