Channel 4 secures Paralympic Games rights

Broadcaster’s “stunning success” in covering London 2012 Paralympic Games sees it awarded two-Games bundle from IPC

Hannah Cockroft (BPA)

The IPC has agreed a two Games deal with a TV station for the very first time in awarding Channel 4 the UK television rights for the Sochi 2014 and Rio 2016 Paralympic Games.

The lead-up to Rio 2016 will also see the broadcaster show coverage of July’s IPC Athletics World Championships from Lyon, France.

Wheelchair racer Hannah Cockroft (pictured), who stormed to T34 100m and 200m victory in the Olympic Stadium last summer, is one of the athletes to have welcomed the news, tweeting: “#ch4 announced to broadcast #Rio2016 and @IPCAthletics world championships this year! Brilliant news! #superhumans.”

The deal with Channel 4 will see the broadcaster look to build on its record-breaking coverage of London 2012 which reached 69 per cent of the population.

Peak figures saw 4.2 million tune in to watch Oscar Pistorius’ gold-medal winning performance in the T44 400m, with audiences also regularly reaching 2 million.

President of the IPC, Sir Philip Craven, commented on how signing up the broadcaster so soon after the conclusion of the London Games “underlines the growth of the Paralympic Movement and the significant impact London 2012 had”.

“With London 2012 Channel 4 created a blueprint for how a commercial broadcaster can raise the profile of Paralympic sport and its athletes to new levels,” he continued.

“They reached record audiences, in particular young people, identified and developed some fantastic new presenting talent and played a significant role in delivering seismic shifts in attitudes and perceptions towards people with an impairment in the UK.”

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