Women-only racing championship woos brand partners with Channel 4 deal
A new women-only car racing championship has given away its first broadcast rights in an attempt to secure brand sponsorship.
W Series, a new motorsports event featuring only women drivers, has agreed a deal with Channel 4 in which the first six races of the series will be broadcast live on the station.
W Series will receive no payment from Channel 4 for the broadcast rights, which are a hugely lucrative revenue stream for the governing bodies of other sports such as Formula One and football, with the organisation saying the decision to give them away is part of a strategy to secure prestige ongoing sponsors for the championship.
Speaking to the Financial Times, W Series chief executive said: "Channel 4 will be the first of many broadcast deals that we are currently agreeing. We need these deals in place before we can attract the best sponsors."
Channel 4's head of sport Pete Andrews added: "We are hoping this will bring more motorsport fans to women's sport and more women to motorsport."
The W Series will see drivers race identical Formula 3 cars, with a $1.5 million prize fund on offer for the first season.
The 2019 championship begins on 3 May in Hockenheim, Germany.