ITV reported to have ditched Formula E coverage for next season

2015/2016 FIA Formula E Championship. Berlin ePrix, Berlin, Germany. Friday 20 May 2016. Photo: Zak Mauger/LAT/Formula E ref: Digital Image _79P1856

Formula E has been left without a UK broadcaster after ITV dropped the series from its schedule, according to reports.

The F1 Broadcasting Blog reports that sources have indicated to them that the ITV chose not to cover season three of the all-electric championship after disappointing viewing figures.

The inaugural season of the championship averaged 216,000 viewers throughout the season, and after a close finale figures were expected to increase for season two.

This was not the case however, and viewing figures dropped sharply to just 138,000 across the 2015-16 season, despite the final two rounds of London once again being shown on ITV rather than ITV4.

The highlights programmes were similarly disappointing and it seems as if this was enough to convince ITV to ditch the series from its schedule.

When asked for a response on the reports Formula E said that they were unable to comment at the present time, but if true then it is worrying news for the sport.

Having free-to-air coverage is vital for a series in its early stages, and this could be a huge setback as the sport attempts to establish itself.

While sources also reportedly spoke to the F1 Broadcasting Blog to say that Channel 4 and Channel 5 could potentially pick up the TV rights, there is also the possibility of it being moved to BT Sport or Eurosport, both of which are behind a paywall.

Given the low ratings that convinced ITV to drop Formula E, it would be hard to explain why another terrestrial channel would want to broadcast it, although both channels 4 and 5 could use it to add to their current motorsport coverage.

Channel 4 are showing Formula 1 for the first time ever this season alongside the World Endurance Championship, while Channel 5 have coverage of the World Rally Championship.