Bernie Ecclestone relaxed about European Court ruling on television rights

Formula 1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone insists he is not worried about a ruling by the European Court of Justice that could have an impact on television rights income for sport in the future

Bernie Ecclestone relaxed about European Court ruling on television rights

An advisory decision relating to Premier League coverage stated that decoders for foreign satellite channels should be permitted - although the matter still needs to be defined by the British courts.

The green light for foreign decoders could leave the way open for British fans to follow F1 via foreign channels in the future - rather than paying for a subscription to Sky, which has secured the rights to show the sport until 2018.

But Ecclestone has said he is not worried by the possible commercial implications - and played down the idea that fans could watch the sport on foreign channels and listen to live coverage on Radio 5 Live.

"We'll wait and see what happens," Ecclestone told The Daily Telegraph. "It's not been signed off by the High Court yet. But we were ahead of the game a long time ago when we broke away from the European Broadcasting Union in the 1980s and started dealing with TV companies individually and we'll try to stay ahead in the future and find a way of maximising our revenues.

"As far as we're concerned the most important thing is to get the largest number of viewers possible to watch F1. We'll adapt."

Speaking about the idea of fans listening to Radio 5 coverage while watching on a foreign channel, Ecclestone said: "That's if 5Live still have the rights.

"We could stop that. Ultimately I think people want something they can see and listen to live with the commentary in sync. As for pubs, maybe what will happen is we'll give it to pubs for free in the future if that's what's needed."

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