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ESPN secures U.S. Formula One rights from 2018

Formula One and ESPN have agreed to a multi-year linear and digital partnership to broadcast every race live in the U.S. from the start of the 2018 season.

Beginning with the Australian Grand Prix in March, every race will air live on the ESPN, ESPN2 or ABC. The package will include every practice and qualifying session and involve more than 125 hours of F1 programming across the first season.

"ESPN has had a long commitment to motorsports, and Formula One is a crown jewel in the sport," said Burke Magnus, ESPN executive vice president of programming & scheduling. "There are many passionate Formula One fans in the U.S. and we look forward to bringing the pageantry, spectacle and excitement of F1 to viewers across the ESPN platform."

Among the highlights will be the Monaco Grand Prix, which will air live on ESPN in the morning, followed by the Indy 500. The race will then be re-aired in the afternoon on ABC after the famous oval race has concluded. The U.S. Grand Prix of October 21 will be broadcast live on ABC.

"We are excited about the return of the world's foremost motor racing platform to the ABC and ESPN platforms," said Sean Bratches, managing director, commercial operations at Formula One. "ABC's Wide World of Sports first started airing live grands prix in the early 1960's and this linear and digital partnership with ESPN represents a significant step forward in achieving Formula One's aim of broadening the sport's appeal.

"The U.S. market is a very important growth opportunity for Formula One and we are looking forward to working with ESPN to ignite the growing fan interest."

ESPN affiliate ABC broadcast the first race aired in the U.S., the 1962 Monaco Grand Prix, shown on its Wide World of Sports programme. Select races continued to appear on the network until 1988.

ESPN began televising F1 races in 1984 with a 10-race deal, expanding to 14 races for the next four seasons and 15 from 1989-1993. The number continued to rise each season until 1997, the last year F1 appeared on ESPN.

Full 2018 broadcast schedule: