Australia’s popular RPM has been axed by Network Ten, bringing down the curtain on the show’s twelve-year stint as Australia’s premier motorsport magazine TV show.
RPM was born when Network Ten acquired hosting rights to the V8 Supercars Championship in 1997, and it ran until the championship’s broadcasting rights moved to Channel 7 at the end of 2008. It was brought back from hibernation last year on Network Ten’s sister station OneHD, with motorsport anchor Greg Rust hosting the show alongside former motorcycle racewinner Daryl Beattie and former endurance racer Craig Baird.
While popular with motorsport fans nationwide for the panel show’s mix of news, interviews and feature pieces, its future was brought into question with several timeslot changes last year as OneHD moved away from being primarily a sports-focused channel.
“Network Ten can confirm that RPM will not be on ONE in 2012,” a statement from the TV group reads.
“Greg Rust, Daryl Beattie and Craig Baird will continue to host Network Ten’s coverage of the 2012 Formula One and MotoGP seasons.”
The station will continue to hold exclusive rights over its Formula 1 broadcasts under its current five-year deal (which ends in 2015), it is still not known whether Australian audiences will receive the BBC or Sky Sports commentary feeds in 2012.
After having its budget slashed, the BBC was forced into selling part of its exclusive broadcasting rights to its pay-TV rival, giving Sky exclusive live broadcasting rights at ever event, while the BBC will show ten races live, with the rest as delayed highlights packages.
Former BBC commentator Martin Brundle jumped ship to Sky, where he will be joined by former BBC Radio 5 Live commentator David Croft.
Brundle’s co-commentator David Coulthard will remain with the BBC, sharing commentary box duties with former ITV touring car commentator Ben Edwards
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