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BBC loses horse racing rights to Channel 4

UK public broadcaster the BBC has lost the TV rights to several high-profile horse-racing events after being outbid by Channel 4. The commercial broadcaster has won TV rights to several premium UK horse racing events including the Grand National, the Derby and Royal Ascot. It has secured the rights in a four-year deal, starting in 2013.

The BBC’s budget for sports rights has been cut as part of a wider cost-cutting exercise. The crucial Premier League soccer rights highlights package held by the BBC expires next year.

“The BBC are proud of their long heritage of broadcasting horse racing and did put in as competitive a bid as possible in the current climate. We are of course disappointed that we have lost the rights, but we are pleased that all the races in the contract remain free to air,” the BBC said in a statement.

Tags: BBC, Channel 4, UK