BBC will win the TV rights for the London Marathon despite tempting bid from Channel 4 – as sprint star Dina Asher-Smith urges UK Athletics to maintain their foothold in London
- BBC are set to win the race to broadcast the London Marathon from Channel 4
- The Beeb persuaded race bosses rights should remain with them after C4’s bid
- Meanwhile, Dina Asher-Smith has urged UK Athletics to keep a London foothold
The BBC are set to win the race to broadcast the London Marathon — and extend their decades-long coverage of the event.
In February, Sportsmail revealed that Channel 4 had submitted the most compelling offer for a multi-year deal that would begin with the next race, which takes place on October 2.
However, it is understood that the panicked Beeb — who have shown the event since its debut in 1981 — have now managed to persuade race bosses that the rights should remain with them for the foreseeable future.
BBC are set to win the race to show the London Marathon, extending decades of covering it
There is a view that a lax approach, having allowed a four-year contract to lapse, opened the door for Channel 4 to present a tempting multi-year bid to broadcast the famous competition
The prospect of losing the rights was deemed ‘unthinkable’, according to insiders at the broadcaster.
There is a view that a lax approach, having allowed a four-year contract to lapse, opened the door for Channel 4.
‘There’s a huge deal of relief in the building that they have managed to avert a disaster,’ a BBC source explained.
Meanwhile, Dina Asher-Smith called for UK Athletics to retain their foothold in the capital amid talks that could see the cash-strapped governing body sell its rights to the London Stadium
Meanwhile, Dina Asher-Smith has called for UK Athletics to retain their foothold in the capital amid talks that could see the cash-strapped governing body sell its rights to use the London Stadium.
Asher-Smith said: ‘I always think London is the centre of sport in the UK and it would be amazing to really use the London Stadium.’
The 200metres world champion also confirmed she intends to contest the World Championships, Commonwealth Games and European Championships, which fall within six weeks of each other this summer.