According to a report on e-racing365, plans to broadcast the ABB FIA Formula E Championship on Channel 4 are entering a crucial stage of negotiations, which is set to swing decisively in the favour of all-electric single-seater racing series.
It is known that negotiations between Formula E Holdings Ltd. and Channel 4 have been pending for several months now, with a deal looming. The delay to the deal have been caused by recent negotiations for Channel 4 to continue showing Formula 1 highlights next year.
If such a move goes ahead, it could help the series to grow in the UK, with C4 being the fourth largest channel in Great Britain.
This is compared to last season, which was covered by a mix of coverage between Channel 5 and its sister channel, 5Spike, which has an audience share of roughly 0.5% in the UK.
It is expected that Whisper Films, who handled the production of Channel 4’s Formula 1 coverage, will also handle Formula E’s coverage on C4.
Whisper Films is co-owned by ex-Formula 1 driver David Coulthard, who attended several races last season, as well as being part of the commentary team in Berlin.
Coulthard has gone on record noting how impressed he was with Formula E’s development, so it would be no surprise to see this development come through at this stage.
Season Five will see a new race structure of 45-minutes plus one lap, which should mean that the races are more TV-friendly than the previous format, which saw the races last up to an hour in length.
Formula E are hopeful that the deal for a greater broadcasting position in the UK to go ahead, which would really help with talks to bring a race back to Britain in the short-term.
Alejandro Agag, CEO of Formula E is fully aware of the challenges needed to make the series more TV friendly, telling e-racing365:
“We need to be very visual [from Season Five onwards], and we need to ensure that everyone understands this race format where there are two levels of energy,” Formula E Founder and CEO Alejandro Agag told e-racing365.
“For that you need to use visual identification such as LEDs or any other kind of way that we can make the car look different when it is on the maximum power [level], so when the guy is using this it needs to be like the car is on fire almost so the fans understand very well that the car is in full attack mode.”