New global sailing series SailGP is gearing up for its inaugural event in Sydney with the announcement of Rolex as presenting partner and a wave of broadcast deals.
In the UK and Ireland, the series is set to be broadcast by BT Sport - one of number of multi-platform rights agreements revealed by organisers ahead of the 15-16th February event in Australia.
A comprehensive global distribution plan includes broadcast agreements across five continents, ensuring coverage in 90 countries.
Coverage will be supplemented by SailGP’s mobile application, to be released this week. The app will offer a multi-feed service that will allow viewers to watch the host broadcast with 11 feeds, including onboard coverage from each boat.
Whisper Films will work alongside SailGP to create the world feed, using drones and LiveLineFx technology to offer fans “the most immersive multi-platform broadcast experience the sport has ever seen.”
Commenting on the broadcast agreements, New Zealand yachtsman Sir Russell Coutts, SailGP CEO, said: “We’re very fortunate to have such a dynamic group of broadcast partners that will bring our new and redefined form of sailing to expanded audiences around the globe.
“Using the latest technology and through these valuable partnerships, we will deliver a broadcast and digital product that caters to modern consumption habits and brings our sport to life in a way that hasn’t been done before.”
The annual global series will see rival national teams from Great Britain, Australia, China, France, Japan and the United States compete in supercharged F50 catamarans.
Following Sydney, the championship will then move to San Francisco in May, New York in June, Cowes in the UK in August, before culminating in a $1m winner-takes-all match race in Marseille, France in September.
News of the SailGP broadcast programme coincided with the announcement of Rolex as Presenting Partner and Official Timepiece for the global sports championship.
As part of the agreement, Rolex timepieces and clocks will be visible throughout all SailGP events, as well as the six competing F50 catamarans.
Rolex has a long heritage with sailing, including sponsorship of the World Sailor of the Year award.
Arnaud Boetsch, Rolex Communication and Image Director, said: “SailGP marks an evolution in yachting and enables Rolex to further strengthen its 60-year relationship with the sport.
“As a brand, we have always appreciated endeavours and sporting disciplines that combine the highest levels of technology with the most talented individuals.
“SailGP meets such a vision, while the art of foiling perfectly illustrates the sport’s constant desire to innovate and improve efficiency, objectives that align with Rolex’s own quest for Perpetual Excellence, in all its activities.”