Sky Sports to unleash major campaign for new F1 channel

BSkyB is to support the March launch of its dedicated Sky Sports Formula 1 channel with a multimedia ad campaign, which kicks off tomorrow (17 February).

The campaign, which includes TV, outdoor, press, digital and social media, will continue for the rest of the season.

The TV ad features high-definition footage from F1 racing, and when it is broadcast, Sky customers will be able to click on the red and green buttons on their remote controls to watch the full film or download extra content to their Sky boxes.

A nationwide outdoor campaign will include traditional posters, augmented reality ads and interactive ads on digital outdoor, as well as a 3D installation on Clear Channel Outdoor's 96-sheets on Cromwell Road, London.

In addition to print and inserts in consumer and trade press, Sky has created a new microsite for all its F1 content and will also use online takeover display ads and social media to drive awareness.

The campaign was created by ad agency Brothers & Sisters and the TV ad was directed by Ivan Bird at Rattling Stick. The creative directors were Mark Harris at Brothers and Sisters and Barry Skolnick at Sky.

Corin Dimopoulos, director of sports and news marketing at Sky, said: "This campaign is all about bringing Formula 1 to life. We're targeting new and existing audiences and the creative reflects Formula 1 being given the Sky Sports treatment.

"With stunning cinematic film, incredible close-up imagery and interactive augmented reality, the campaign reinforces the fact that the race is only part of the story on Sky Sports F1 HD."

Sky announced it had done a deal with the BBC to share the Formula 1 rights in July. Under the terms of the deal, the BBC, which used to have the rights exclusively, will only broadcast half the races, while Sky will broadcast every race live.

The Sky F1 channel, called Sky Sports F1 HD, will go on air on Friday 9 March and the first race of the Formula 1 season is the Australian Grand Prix the following weekend (16 to 18 March).

In addition to the Formula 1 races, Sky Sports F1 HD will include news, interviews and insight, as well as footage from the GP2 and GP3 series. Interviews and a weekly magazine show will be available on the Sky interactive service.

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