F1 to broadcast winter testing live for first time in 2019
Formula 1's pre-season testing will be broadcast live on F1 TV, marking the first time that winter action will be aired globally. The news was confirmed by F1's head of marketing research Matt Roberts in a Q+A with fans on Reddit.
UK viewers were treated to pre-season action by Sky Sports in 2013, but F1 has never broadcast the action - until now it seems.
Although many fans have been turned off by Liberty Media's approach since buying F1 from Bernie Ecclestone in 2016, the new American owners have made a distinct effort to give fans even more opportunities to see the action.
Revamped efforts on social media see clips and highlights packages published across social media.
Pre-season testing is always a source of intrigue as cars for the year ahead hit the track for the first time.
In years past, only those at the track have been privy to the goings on, although clips have surfaced during tests on social media in recent years.
Perhaps in an attempt to control what footage comes out of the Circuit de Catalunya, it has now been confirmed that the two tests will be shown live on F1's OTT streaming service.
The news may well be met with appreciation, however, the F1 TV Pro service remains beset with negative reviews after a mid-season launch in 2018 that was overshadowed by a swathe of technical faults.
Liberty admitted that 2018 had been a "soft launch" and have vowed a bigger and better product for next year, with reports claiming that more territories – including a potentially lucrative UK market – will be added to the full-feature platform in 2019.
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