During the Melbourne Formula 1 Grand Prix Channel Ten put a lot of effort into advertising it would be broadcasting this year’s F1 season live instead of just the old 11:00pm delayed coverage. It was great news, right? Turns out that maybe they were a little misleading.

Here at EFTM we’re big fans of the Ten Sport team, and in particular Rusty, Darryl and Craig who front the coverage of F1 and MotoGP week in and week out. Sadly though, those boys are copping flak online from fans who are starting to check the TV schedule and realise a few home truths.

Ten are broadcasting the F1 live… But only in the Eastern states. That means South Australian, Northern Territory and West Australian viewers only get to watch the races on delay. That sucks.

Historically, when Ten was broadcasting a delayed race, One would offer it live, giving digital viewers the chance to enjoy it as it happened. But the disappointing news is that One will no longer carry the F1 live when Ten is in delay.

Even more disappointing is the realisation that without One’s coverage, there will be no HD coverage of F1 at all.

This is a real slap in the face of F1 fans – who unlike NRL and AFL fans have not been disappointed by the HD channel allocations over recent years. OneHD brought great benefits to Ten’s sports catalogue which now seems to have disappeared into the ether for the fans.

It’s a big call from Network Ten. Without the F1 being broadcast live, they’ll see a big switch off from One on Sunday night as passionate motorsports fans decide that “Domestic Disturbance” and the “ANZ Netball Championships” aren’t as entertaining as the F1 in HD.

Considering there are two Aussies racing in the 2012 F1 Championship, the lack of a live HD broadcast is almost unforgivable. Even worse is the decision to cut the pre-race show to just 30 minutes.

Hopefully Channel 10 will see the error of its ways before the sport doesn’t get relegated any further down the priority list in the future.

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