ESPN Star Sports acquires MotoGP for Asia

MUMBAI: ESPN Star Sports today concluded a multi-year broadcast agreement for the MotoGP World Championship. The broadcaster has been showcasing the MotoGP for 10 years and will continue to bring the races in the coming years under the renewed contract.


Under the terms of agreement with Dorna Sports, exclusive holder of all commercial and TV rights of the MotoGP World Championship, ESPN Star Sports will broadcast all 17 races of the Championship live for the next three seasons from 2006 to 2008, across all Asian markets including India, Hong Kong, Indonesia and Malaysia.

Together with this renewal in the East Asian and Southeast Asian markets, MotoGP will also continue to be broadcasted in Korea and China.


Prior to this, ESPN Star Sports had also secured the telecast rights for Formula One and A1 Grand Prix.

Dorna Sports MD Manel Arroyo said, "We are indeed very pleased to have renewed our agreement with ESPN Star Sports and continue to bring the excitement of the Championship to the viewers of ESPN Star Sports' channels. Through years of partnership with ESPN Star Sports, viewers have followed the evolution of the sport and we are sure that they have even greater moments to watch on ESPN screens during the coming seasons."

ESPN Star Sports senior vice president, programming and event management Manu Sawhney said, "Over the years, we have focused on growing motor sports content on our networks across Asia. We have done so by recently reacquiring Formula One and purchasing A1 GP in its debut season. These sports have been pushed strongly with marketing investments and thus witnessed a steady growth. Our continuation of a relationship with Dorna Sports represents the strong partnership we have built with the rights holder and reaffirms our commitment to our motor sports viewers. We have witnessed and have been a part of the Championship's growth from 14 to 17 events. Our MotoGP coverage now reaches 59 million households across Asia and we have provided our viewers over 550 hours of MotoGP action over the last 10 years. With our continued efforts we will keep increasing the viewership for MotoGP."

MotoGP is the premier motor bike racing circuit in the world. The Championship covers 17 races held in five continents every season and has 54 years of racing history to its credit.

MotoGP continues to attract serious talent to its fold. Some of the most popular drivers include the reigning world champion Valentino Rossi who continues to set new records and reach new milestones as he closes in on the 2005 MotoGP championship title. The Italian rider has the chance to seal the crown at the coming round in the Motegi Circuit in Japan (18 September).

He will also be the man to watch next year as he continues to race in Yamaha's MotoGP line-up riding the Yamaha YZR-M1 in the 2006 MotoGP World Championship. Rossi won the 2004 MotoGP World Championship with Yamaha and is currently competing in his second season with the Japanese manufacturer's factory team. Racing fans will also be keeping their eye on Marco Melandri, who made his debut in the MotoGP category in 2003, after winning the 250cc world championship the year before.

Remaining races in the 2005 racing calendar:

Grand Prix
18 September Japan Motegi
25 September Malaysia Sepang
1 October Qatar Doha
16 October Australia Phillip Island
23 October Turkey Istanbul
6 November Valencia Valencia

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