BBC says it will make £35million cuts to its sports rights after having to make overall savings of £150million. Cycling could vanish from its transmissions

Cycling could be one of the sports that vanishes from the BBC after the British television broadcaster announced it is to make £150million of cuts.

The BBC announced on Wednesday that £35million will be cut from its sports rights budget, with ‘minority’ sports, such as athletics and cycling, likely to be hit.

In the past year, the BBC has broadcast coverage of the RideLondon-Surrey Classic, the UCI Road World Championships and Track World Cup. Much of the coverage has been available via the Red Button service, which is now also facing the axe.

The BBC has already lost the overall rights to broadcast the Olympic Games from 2022 onwards after Eurosport parent company Discovery signed a European broadcast contract for the rights, worth £920million.

The exact list of sports that may be affected has yet to be announced by the BBC, and we may have to wait until new deals are made for cycling broadcast rights until we know the fate of cycling coverage on the BBC. Formula 1, darts and snooker are also likely to be lost by the corporation.

The £150million cuts are being made to make up a shortfall in licence fees.

  • J1

    Ah yes all those races the BBC cover….ehhh….

    Does this mean they won’t show it during the Olympics then? That’ll be something that as a whole will be much worse now too, because they’ve stopped the red button service, which was one of the better things they had. They should stop spending money on awful shows and presenters and they might be a bit better off.

    I hope Eurosport pick up the dropped races anyway.

  • Richard Marston

    Exactly. Eurosport Player: £4 a month and you can watch on any gadget
    capable of accessing the internet. I just don’t need to see cycle sport
    “validated” by the BBC.

  • Larigos

    Numbers in cycling are apparently falling according to British cycling. But heh cut out the under 13’s from competition, removal from BBC and guess what it will keep dropping.


  • barraob1

    With Clarkson getting sacked surely they should be up this year?

  • Rupert the Super Bear

    Laughable really. So in the BBC’s 93 year history, it only lowered itself to cover cycling for about 3 years then?

  • Dabber

    The BBC show so little cycling that I don’t think I’d notice any reduction. They’re not exactly my channel of choice to watch cycling on.

  • Gary Jogela

    If there is a tv in your house (a television that is) you pay the licence fee

  • Edvid

    Apparently the shortfall is down to viewers watching more of their programmes on iPlayer, for which you don’t have to pay a licence fee (unless you’re watching programmes as they’re broadcast).

  • Tom Reilly

    Wonder why there’s a short fall on license fees? And how there’s a £150m shortfall? Does no one pay anymore? As our population grows, more TVs are bought, more licenses are purchased. There must be big gaps in that logic.