Predicting the 2015 calendar pick order

A yearly tradition on The F1 Broadcasting Blog is to predict how the BBC and Sky may play their cards where the Formula One calendar is concerned. The good news, for me, is that a first version of that calendar has been released. The main change is that Mexico returns to the calendar, at least for the moment, India was meant to return but that hasn’t happened. 2015 is a significant year, as it marks the halfway point in the current BBC and Sky broadcasting contract that was announced back in 2011, the deal running from 2012 to, and including, 2018. So, the calendar, provisionally, is therefore as follows:

March 15th – Australia (Melbourne)
March 29th – Malaysia (Sepang)
April 5th – Bahrain (Sakhir)
April 19th – China (Shanghai)
May 10th – Spain (Barcelona)
May 24th – Monaco (Monaco)
June 7th – Canada (Montreal)
June 21st – Austria (Red Bull Ring)
July 5th – Britain (Silverstone)
July 19th – Germany (Hockenheim)
July 26th – Hungary (Budapest)
August 23rd – Belgium (Spa)
September 6th – Italy (Monza)
September 20th – Singapore (Marina Bay)
September 27th – Japan (Suzuka)
October 11th – Russia (Sochi)
October 25th – USA (Circuit of the Americas)
November 1st – Mexico (Mexico City)
November 15th – Brazil (Interlagos)
November 29th – Abu Dhabi (Yas Marina)

Because of the way the BBC and Sky deal works, both sides have to ‘pick’ races. The races that BBC pick will be shown live on BBC One and Sky Sports F1, while the races that Sky pick will be shown exclusively live on Sky Sports F1, with highlights on BBC One. The picks go as follows:

– BBC pick three races (pick 1, 2 and 3)
– Sky pick three races (pick 4, 5 and 6)
– BBC pick one race (pick 7)
– Sky pick one race (pick 8)

This continues until every race has been picked. As there’s twenty races on the calendar, it is a 50/50 split, with BBC screening ten races live, and Sky screening the other ten races exclusively live. It goes without saying that both sides will want the high profile races (exclusively in Sky’s case), and may not want any ‘duds’, but it doesn’t work like that. I imagine Sky will go into the process looking for as many primetime races as possible towards the back end of the year, whilst BBC will want a more even distribution of races across the entire year. As always, this post is only a bit of fun, and good for discussion too as the calendar moves forward. Disappointingly, I only got nine out of 19 correct for 2014, compared with the real thing. Must try harder!

BBC pick Britain, Abu Dhabi and Brazil – Brilliant news for the BBC, as the British Grand Prix will not clash with the Wimbledon final! From 2015, the tennis competition will be held a week later, which is good news all around for Silverstone. Abu Dhabi is again the last race, so that will be picked. I was really confused to see that BBC did not pick Brazil as a live race this season, which could well turn out to be a very costly decision if either Nico Rosberg and Lewis Hamilton gain some momentum in the next few races. Either way, whichever one of the American timezone races that the BBC chooses, Sky will immediately go for the other three, it is a no brainer in my eyes. Therefore Sky pick USA, Mexico and Canada. I don’t think Mexico would be as set in stone as the other two, but we will know more as things unfold in the next few months as to whether 2015 is a definite, it looks that way at the moment.

Surprisingly, thanks to there being four American timezone races, Monaco is still on the table after six picks. The only thing that may prevent BBC picking Monaco is that it will clash with the final day of the Premier League season, the top-tier flight finishing unusually late this season. I think the positives outweigh the negatives here though, Monaco traditionally can bring big numbers and it is too good to turn down when you consider what has already been picked. Bahrain I think will be further up Sky’s agenda than perhaps previously, due to its new mid-afternoon timeslot, meaning that it is able to pick up a higher audience than before. Therefore BBC pick Monaco and Sky pick Bahrain.

Which leaves us in this position:

March 15th – Australia (Melbourne)
March 29th – Malaysia (Sepang)
April 5th – Bahrain (Sakhir) – Sky
April 19th – China (Shanghai)
May 10th – Spain (Barcelona)
May 24th – Monaco (Monaco) – BBC
June 7th – Canada (Montreal) – Sky
June 21st – Austria (Red Bull Ring)
July 5th – Britain (Silverstone) – BBC
July 19th – Germany (Hockenheim)
July 26th – Hungary (Budapest)
August 23rd – Belgium (Spa)
September 6th – Italy (Monza)
September 20th – Singapore (Marina Bay)
September 27th – Japan (Suzuka)
October 11th – Russia (Sochi)
October 25th – USA (Circuit of the Americas) – Sky
November 1st – Mexico (Mexico City) – Sky
November 15th – Brazil (Interlagos) – BBC
November 29th – Abu Dhabi (Yas Marina) – BBC

If we are to continue looking at the early races, I think we will see BBC pick Malaysia and Sky pick Australia. In reality, I do feel that BBC need to pick the opening round next season, because it seems to be a trend now that, since the new deal, the opening round has struggled as a result of it being exclusively live on Sky. If BBC had the opening race, they’re more likely to promote that fact more, resulting in higher viewing figures all around, but I don’t see it happening. Following that, BBC pick Belgium, Sky pick Italy, BBC pick Singapore and Sky pick Austria. Closing off the European rounds, we have BBC pick Hungary and Sky pick Germany. Germany would again be a no-go for the BBC as it clashes with The Open Golf championship.

Which means we are left with this:

March 15th – Australia (Melbourne) – Sky
March 29th – Malaysia (Sepang) – BBC
April 5th – Bahrain (Sakhir) – Sky
April 19th – China (Shanghai)
May 10th – Spain (Barcelona)
May 24th – Monaco (Monaco) – BBC
June 7th – Canada (Montreal) – Sky
June 21st – Austria (Red Bull Ring) – Sky
July 5th – Britain (Silverstone) – BBC
July 19th – Germany (Hockenheim) – Sky
July 26th – Hungary (Budapest) – BBC
August 23rd – Belgium (Spa) – BBC
September 6th – Italy (Monza) – Sky
September 20th – Singapore (Marina Bay) – BBC
September 27th – Japan (Suzuka)
October 11th – Russia (Sochi)
October 25th – USA (Circuit of the Americas) – Sky
November 1st – Mexico (Mexico City) – Sky
November 15th – Brazil (Interlagos) – BBC
November 29th – Abu Dhabi (Yas Marina) – BBC

For those wondering, why Spain has been left until nearer the end as it falls on the weekend after the General Election (which did result in some slight schedule changes for the F1 in 2010) and the 5 Live team might be depleted that weekend due to Formula E. We also have China, Japan and Russia. The issue for BBC too is that China falls on The FA Cup semi-final weekend. Again, at a time when BBC’s live sport portfolio is not the largest, it makes no sense to make one weekend ‘top heavy’ with another weekend featuring no content at all. With that in mind, BBC pick Russia and Sky pick Japan. General election or not, Spain is much more attractive than China, so BBC pick Spain and Sky pick China. Which leaves the final calendar as follows:

March 15th – Australia (Melbourne) – Sky
March 29th – Malaysia (Sepang) – BBC
April 5th – Bahrain (Sakhir) – Sky
April 19th – China (Shanghai) – Sky
May 10th – Spain (Barcelona) – BBC
May 24th – Monaco (Monaco) – BBC
June 7th – Canada (Montreal) – Sky
June 21st – Austria (Red Bull Ring) – Sky
July 5th – Britain (Silverstone) – BBC
July 19th – Germany (Hockenheim) – Sky
July 26th – Hungary (Budapest) – BBC
August 23rd – Belgium (Spa) – BBC
September 6th – Italy (Monza) – Sky
September 20th – Singapore (Marina Bay) – BBC
September 27th – Japan (Suzuka) – Sky
October 11th – Russia (Sochi) – BBC
October 25th – USA (Circuit of the Americas) – Sky
November 1st – Mexico (Mexico City) – Sky
November 15th – Brazil (Interlagos) – BBC
November 29th – Abu Dhabi (Yas Marina) – BBC

I will update this post periodically like I did last year as the calendar changes. But this is how I imagine the pick order progressing.

Updated on September 18th, 2014.

Advertisements

15 thoughts on “Predicting the 2015 calendar pick order

  1. I think the Pick Order will fall like this:
    Australian GP – Sky
    Malaysian GP – BBC
    Bahrain GP – BBC
    Chinese GP – Sky
    Spanish GP – Sky
    Monaco GP – BBC
    Canadian GP – BBC
    Austrian GP – Sky
    British GP – BBC
    German GP – Sky
    Hungarian GP – Sky
    Belgian GP – BBC
    Italian GP – Sky
    Singapore GP – BBC
    Japanese GP – Sky
    Russian GP – BBC
    US GP – Sky
    Mexican GP – Sky
    Brazilian GP – BBC
    UAE GP – BBC

  2. I personally think BBC would pick Canada again over Brazil. Canada generally brings in the highest viewing figures of the year on the BBC so they would be foolish not too. Then I think Sky would pick Monaco, Australia and Brazil.

    Over the season I think it would go:
    Australia – Sky (2)
    Malaysia – BBC (4)
    Bahrain – Sky (4)
    China – Sky (5)
    Spain – BBC (10)
    Monaco – Sky (1)
    Canada – BBC (3)
    Austria – Sky (6)
    Britain – BBC (1)
    Germany – Sky (8)
    Hungary – Sky (10)
    Belgium – BBC (5)
    Italy – BBC (6)
    Singapore – Sky (9)
    Japan – BBC (8)
    Russia – BBC (9)
    USA – Sky (7)
    Mexico – BBC (7)
    Brazil – Sky (3)
    Abu Dhabi – BBC (2)

  3. I think the best way for the BBC to go is for minimum 90 minute highlight shows as possible which is 3, this is how the picks would go:

    Australian GP – Sky
    Malaysian GP – Sky
    Bahrain GP – BBC
    Chinese GP – Sky
    Spanish GP – BBC
    Monaco GP – BBC
    Canadian GP – Sky
    Austrian GP – Sky (1)
    British GP – BBC
    German GP – Sky (2)
    Hungarian GP – BBC
    Belgian GP – BBC
    Italian GP – Sky (3)
    Singapore GP – BBC
    Japanese GP – Sky
    Russian GP – BBC
    US GP – Sky
    Mexican GP – Sky
    Brazilian GP – BBC
    Abu Dhabi GP – BBC

  4. This is my predictions of how Sky and BBC will choose the pick order:

    Austrailia – BBC
    Malaysia – Sky
    Bahrain – BBC
    China – Sky
    Spain – Sky
    Monaco – BBC
    Canada – BBC
    Austria – Sky
    Britain – BBC
    Germany – Sky
    Hungary – BBC
    Belgium – BBC
    Italy – Sky
    Singapore – BBC
    Japan – Sky
    Russia – Sky
    USA – BBC
    Mexico – Sky
    Brazil – Sky
    Abu Dhabi – BBC

  5. I like this game..

    I’ve got…

    Aus – BBC
    Mal – Sky
    Bah – Sky
    Chi – BBC
    Spa – Sky
    Mon – Sky
    Can – BBC
    Aust – Sky
    Bri – BBC
    Ger – BBC
    Hun – Sky
    Bel – BBC
    Ita – BBC
    Sin – Sky
    Jap – Sky
    Rus – BBC
    USA – BBC
    Mex – Sky
    Bra – Sky
    Abu – BBC

    Could be a good bet considering Sky go very heavy at the beginning of the season (5 of the first 8 in 2014)

    Britain – Italy, 4 of 5 on the BBC might not work though.

  6. I have changed my opinion on how the pick order will fall:
    Australian GP – Sky
    Malaysian GP – Sky
    Bahrain GP – BBC
    Chinese GP – Sky
    Spanish GP – Sky
    Monaco GP – BBC
    Canadian GP – BBC
    Austrian GP – Sky
    British GP – BBC
    German GP – Sky
    Hungarian GP – BBC
    Belgian GP – BBC
    Italian GP – Sky
    Singapore GP – BBC
    Japanese GP – Sky
    Russian GP – BBC
    US GP – BBC
    Mexican GP – Sky
    Brazilian GP – Sky
    U.A.E GP – BBC

  7. Sky will always want Monaco, and to be honest they put on a great show for the paying public all weekend long, and their presenters love the whole race weekend and the build up too, just like us ! paying for quality is what it is i’m afraid ! BBC lost me three years ago, sad but true.

  8. What do you think will happen with the revised calendar of 21 races?

    Australia – March 15th
    Malaysia – March 29th
    China – April 12th
    Bahrain – April 19th
    Korea – May 3rd

    The rest of the calendar is the same.

    • Korea won’t happen, so I’d wager on that being left until the every end, therefore Sky exclusive.

      Given that I said at the very end “so BBC pick Spain and Sky pick China”, this would simply be reversed, so BBC pick China, Sky pick Spain and then Korea as the 21st race.

  9. To be honest i think it will look very similar to this year, only with Brazil and Germany back on BBC and Japan going Sky. As Korea won’t happen, i’ve left it out:

    March 15th – Australia (Melbourne) – Sky
    March 29th – Malaysia (Sepang) -Beeb*
    April 5th – Bahrain (Sakhir) – Sky*
    April 19th – China (Shanghai) – Sky
    May 10th – Spain (Barcelona) – Beeb
    May 24th – Monaco (Monaco) – Sky
    June 7th – Canada (Montreal) – Beeb
    June 21st – Austria (Red Bull Ring) – Sky
    July 5th – Britain (Silverstone) – Beeb
    July 19th – Germany (Hockenheim) – Beeb
    July 26th – Hungary (Budapest) – Sky
    August 23rd – Belgium (Spa) – Beeb
    September 6th – Italy (Monza) – Beeb
    September 20th – Singapore (Marina Bay) – Sky
    September 27th – Japan (Suzuka) – Sky
    October 11th – Russia (Sochi) – Beeb
    October 25th – USA (Circuit of the Americas) – Sky
    November 1st – Mexico (Mexico City) -Sky
    November 15th – Brazil (Interlagos) – Beeb
    November 29th – Abu Dhabi (Yas Marina) – Beeb

    *Could switch but unlikely

  10. Formula 1 should be a free to air sport and Live on the BBC. Other broadcasters have tried to show it, ITV and Sky Sports and both have failed in my opinion. Formula 1 commisioners have a deal with terrestrial broadcasting but Bernie Ecclestone started chasing money, which was provided by Sky. Sports such as Football and Rugby should be on Pay to View TV with Highlights on terrestrial TV. F1 and Tennis are sports that should stay with the BBC. Also, I think BT Sport will fail and Moto GP could return to the BBC in 2019 or be shown on ITV 4 Live which is more likely.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s