The Victoria Racing Club (VRC) and TEN have now confirmed a $100 million, five-year agreement for the Melbourne Cup from 2019 to 2023.
TEN will broadcast Live the four days of the Melbourne Cup Carnival – Victoria Derby Day, Melbourne Cup Day, Oaks Day, and Stakes Day.
The agreement comprises a suite of Melbourne Cup Carnival media rights, including free to air TV, internet, social media, mobile, OTT (Over-The-Top) and HbbTV (Hybrid Broadcast Broadband TV) within Australia.
The deal is twice the size of rumours that were running rampant on Friday of $5-10m annually.
VRC Chief Executive Officer Neil Wilson said, “During the comprehensive tender process Network TEN proved themselves to be the best partner to take us into the future. This partnership will extend the Melbourne Cup Carnival to be visible across the network, across platforms and across the full year. In addition, it gives us the opportunity to engage new and growing audiences to our Carnival and to the sport of racing.
“These are the broadest set of rights that the VRC has ever offered around the Melbourne Cup Carnival and is a significant expansion on previous agreements. The process highlighted that Network TEN’s energy and commitment to showcasing the Melbourne Cup Carnival throughout the year best aligned to our strategy.”
“This is transformational for us and for the racing industry,” said VRC Chairman Amanda Elliott. “Through this partnership with TEN, the VRC’s diverse range of content, including world-class racing, the vibrancy of the Birdcage, Myer Fashions on the Field, the colour and entertainment in The Park and all facets of our new world-class Club Stand will be leveraged via a whole of network approach throughout the year.
“While we are excited about this new stage for the Club, our heartfelt thanks go to the Seven Network, a valued and close Cup Week partner of ours for 16 years. Seven has broadcast the Melbourne Cup Carnival to millions of Australians and has played a pivotal role in assisting in growing the event into the global phenomenon it is today.”
TEN previously held the television rights to the Melbourne Cup for 24 years from 1978 until 2001.
Network TEN CEO Paul Anderson said: “We are extremely excited that the Melbourne Cup Carnival is coming home to Network TEN. Our Network has a rich history with this world-class event having been the broadcaster of the race that stops a nation for over two decades. The Melbourne Cup Carnival is one of the most prestigious horseracing events in the world, and Cup Day is iconic, not just in the sporting calendar, but for all Australians.
“TEN is home to some of Australia’s most loved programming and talent. As part of this landmark media rights partnership, all the thrill and excitement of the Melbourne Cup Carnival story will live on Network TEN across the entire year, and be showcased in new ways across our various platforms, including those of our parent company CBS.
“We have a clear alignment between our audiences and everything the Melbourne Cup Carnival has to offer. We are looking forward to working with the Victoria Racing Club and establishing one of the best sporting partnerships in the world,” Anderson said.
TEN has also agreed terms with Racing.com to provide Live coverage of all races across the Melbourne Cup Carnival on its channels and the Racing.com app. The live vision streaming rights for Wagering Service Providers are excluded from the deal with Network TEN.
Outside Melbourne Cup Carnival, Group 1 racing from Flemington can continue to be viewed on the Seven Network until at least the end of June 2020.
“We look forward to working with Seven on another outstanding Melbourne Cup Carnival in 2018.”