Austrian commercial TV channel Servus TV has acquired the TV broadcast rights of motor sports series MotoGP for Austria.
From the season start on March 20, 2016 in Qatar, the free-to-air channel will show all races live – but will encrypt its satellite signal on Astra (19.2° East) in return to restrict reception to Austrian DTH households.
The move only affects the Servus TV version for Austria which will be encrypted 24 hours per day. The German version which is also offered on cable networks in Germany will not transmit the races and continue to broadcast unencrypted on Astra.
For reception, the ORF SAT smartcard is needed which is only issued to Austrians living in the Alpine republic, a Servus TV spokeswoman told Broadband TV News. As practically all Austrian DTH households have this smartcard, domestic access to the channel is ensured, she added.
The 3-year contract with rights holder Dorna Sports covers all MotoGP races, qualifiers and the Moto2 and Moto3 competitions. Servus TV will transmit all competitions live and in HD quality. The channel also secured the mobile TV and internet rights and will screen the races as livestreams on a dedicated website in Austria.
A special highlight: MotoGP will return to Austria this summer after 19 years. The race will take place on August 14, 2016 at the Red Bull Ring in Spielberg.