The FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) has confirmed a new long-term broadcast partnership with American cable and satellite TV company Velocity, which will broadcast its races, including the full Le Mans 24 Hours, from the upcoming 2018/19 FIA WEC ‘Super Season’ onwards.
Part of Discovery Inc, and specializing in automotive programming, the agreement gives Velocity and Motor Trend the right to show live coverage in the USA and Canada of all qualifying sessions and races. The races on Velocity will utilise the Eurosport broadcast team, rather than the its own separate feed or that of the WEC TV team (DSC expects details of the 2018/19 WEC TV service to be released imminently).
DSC understands that this new deal means that the FIA WEC app will be geo-blocked in the USA and in English-speaking Canada. However, fans from the affected region will still be able to stream WEC races via Motor Trend’s online service and app.
“We are very happy to have reached this agreement with Velocity, a channel which is available to more than half the households throughout the USA,” said FIA WEC CEO Gerard Neveu. “The USA is a key market for the WEC and over 65 million people will now have access to it, offering our sport of endurance racing an extraordinary opportunity to engage with mass audiences.”
Robert S. Scanlon, President of Velocity and TEN Video Content added: “Without question the 24 Hours of Le Mans is the most iconic auto racing event in the world. Eurosport produces world-class live coverage of the event every year.
“Nowhere else in the U.S. or Canada can fans access their best-in-class coverage, and get a broader, richer Le Mans experience than with Velocity on television, MotorTrend.com online and the Motor Trend app on connected devices.”