Channel 4 have confirmed that former BBC F1 commentator and pundit David Coulthard will form a major part of their on-air team when the commercial station begins airing Formula One in the UK this year.
Former F1 driver Coulthard who drove for Williams, McLaren and Red Bull Racing was part of the BBC’s Formula One coverage from 2009 when the corporation took over the broadcasting contract for F1 in the UK at the end of the 2008 season after retiring from Formula One at the end of 2008.
Coulthard along with his business partner and former BBC F1 colleague Jake Humphrey have in a major coup for the pair been awarded the production contract for F1 on Channel 4 through their production company Whisper Films.
While DC remained with the BBC throughout their F1 coverage, Humphrey an avid Football fan left the corporation to join BT Sport to front the Premier League coverage.
Speaking about Coulthard’s appointment, Channel 4’s head TV events and sport, Ed Harvard commented by saying:
We are delighted that David Coulthard will be at the heart of Channel 4’s coverage and look forward to announcing the full presenting team in the coming weeks.
Speaking about his new position, DC commented by saying:
The F1 world has been incredibly impressed with what Whisper has delivered over the last five years and Channel 4’s decision is testament to that, I’m looking forward to being part of an exciting new era for Formula 1, with Whisper Films and our proven level of creativity and innovation very much at the heart of that.
Whisper Films employs a number of former BBC production staff and it is possible that a number of Coulthard’s colleagues from the BBC F1 team could join him at Channel 4. North One Productions who produced ITV’s F1 coverage have teamed up with Channel 4 to produce a number of features for the F1 coverage throughout the season. C4 will show ten live races in 2016.
Speaking about the deal Whisper Films Executive Producer Sunil Patel who is also a partner in Whisper Films allow with DC and Humprey and a former BBC F1 producer commented by saying:
Whisper Films has an unrivalled production team with over 20 years’ experience in Formula 1 and unique contacts throughout the sport. Channel 4 and the sport have talked about a new approach and we believe we are ideally placed to deliver this.