Monday February 12th, 2001
The British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) has secured the exclusive radio rights to cover Formula One in the United Kingdom for the next five seasons.
The BBC's current deal was set to end after the 2001 season but Formula One ringmaster Bernie Ecclestone, who owns the commercial rights to the sport, said it was an easy choice to extend the contract.
"The massive radio following for Formula One has been very well served by BBC Radio 5 Live in the United Kingdom," said Ecclestone. "And when something works that well it's best left in place."
Controller of Radio 5 Live, Bob Shennan, said: "Jonathan Legard and the Five Live approach to Formula One has spawned a strong following among Formula One fans."
Legard is now expected to continue with radio commentary, rather than move to ITV as a replacement for Murray Walker, who retires at the end of this year.
Peter Salmon, BBC Director of Sport, was delighted that the "high calibre sport" would remain on Radio 5 Live.