Chris’s Sport on Freeview Guide – Issue 6

Hello all – this week we start off with an interview!  We’re speaking with Lisa Lewis, who has a brilliant blog site at – all devoted to the wonderful world of MOTO GP.


Picture – With kind permission of LisaLewisWrites (Twitter)

Chris – Moto GP coverage has switched from BBC to BT now – in your opinion how does the coverage fare on BT?


Lisa – The coverage BT Sport has provided, with practice, qualifying and the race all covered  for all three world championship classes and the supporting MotoGP tonight show in the  week is both in-depth and expert.  As the new broadcaster they are on a massive learning curve to find out what viewers want  from their coverage and more is expected as it is now a pay-to-view sport on the channel where the BBC was accessible to all allowing casual viewers to dip in and get interested.  They have had some well publicised problems, Melanie Sykes’ appointment and parting of  the ways being the most notable. Personally I would have liked them to have found a  permanent replacement by now and had more broadcasts like the first from Qatar where they  had a great trackside atmosphere instead of studio coverage.

Chris – ITV4 offers a highlights package on Monday evenings, am I right in thinking we only see snippets now of the Moto2 and Moto3 races on Freeview?

Lisa – That’s absolutely correct. It’s wonderful that ITV stepped in to create a free viewing alternative on Freeview keeping MotoGP available for all at the last moment but the future of the sport is really being hurt as it limits the interest in the young new talent in the lightweight and intermediate classes, where some of the best racing happens.  Following riders like current champion Marc Marquez or British future hope Scott Redding from their beginnings gives you a better understanding of their race mentality and struggles and is a great introduction to their personalities.

Chris – Tell us more about your blog – when did you start it, how did it come about?

Lisa – My blog, Survival of the Fastest, started in 2012, I was already writing about MotoGP in a professional capacity by then but as I picked up more work I wanted a place of my own on the internet to help grow interest in my race reports and news stories for the Moto2 and Moto3 classes; my specialist area; which could also function as a sort of CV via an ‘about me’ page and a home for all the bits of GP which I adore but don’t fit – I love to post about and discuss new helmet art there, for example.

Chris – So, for anyone new to MotoGP out there – what’s the difference between MotoGP, Moto2 and Moto3?

Lisa – MotoGP is the premier bike racing class, if you’re racing there then you’ve made it, though a few Superbike fans have been known to disagree with that notion! Moto3 and Moto2 are the supporting races every grand prix weekend, also acting as feeder classes for the best riders to work their way up to MotoGP.  It is rare in modern MotoGP for a future rider to have come to the championship from Superbikes, though a few of the British and most of the American riders in recent years have made the transition, U.S. Stars Ben Spies and Colin Edwards arrived after success there as did the Brits James Toseland and Cal Crutchlow, for example.  Sam Lowes is a particularly interesting prospect – having won last seasons Supersport title he has made the move over to Moto2 – it’s a big indicator of how crucial the traditional method to the top is to getting your abilities noticed.  Many of the MotoGP champions of recent years have already been champions of Moto2 and Moto3 or their predecessors 250cc and 125cc racing.

Chris – What’s the best race that you’ve ever seen?

Lisa – I was lucky enough to be at the Catalunya GP of 2009 for the epic Yamaha battle of the team-mates between Valentino Rossi and Jorge Lorenzo, a modern classic. I’d have the Rossi v Casey Stoner at Laguna Seca from the previous year as a close second. There are many, many excellent races back through the history of MotoGP, but I’ll stick with ones I saw live.

Chris – Who is your all time favourite participant in MotoGP and… why?

Lisa – I got into the sport when Rossi dominated so he’d have to be my choice, not just for his multiple title wins and race craft but everything he brings to the sport, his character and charisma changed MotoGP in a big way and is something the new crowd of riders strive to emulate.

Chris – How do you think MotoGP will change/develop over the next couple of years?

Lisa – There are many guaranteed changes coming to MotoGP. The calendar has already started to evolve with more races from outside Europe included. From a British perspective change means a grand prix moved from Silverstone to a yet to be built track in Wales.  There will also be team changes with Suzuki and Aprillia both set for a return, a control  ECU (computer) hardware is also imminent. Further in the future tyre changes are due when  Michelin return as tyre provider after Bridgestone announced 2015 will be their final season  as supplier.  Hopefully all these changes will give the MotoGP series a chance to open up and give us  some really competitive racing.

Thanks to Lisa for the interview and don’t forget to take a look at – it’s a brilliant site, I know there’s lots of people who used to love watching Moto2 and Moto3 on BBC Red Button and Lisa’s site will keep you up to date.

P.S  My complaint to BBC which I’ve sent today – trying to get them to show ScrumV rugby on Red Button on Friday… see below…

Scrum V season begins on Friday and The One Show, Eastenders means that the game cannot be shown live – fair enough, totally understand that.  However, the Eastenders extra scene is on for over 8 hours, and then a loop of CBBC programming follows.  Somewhere on Friday evening or Saturday, the rugby could be shown delayed, especially as there is no Final Score on Saturday due to international matches.  Please could BBC Red Button revise their schedule before the weekend, and cater for the millions of people who have access to just Freeview and allow the Scrum V rugby to be shown delayed at some point!  Even one showing in the early hours of the morning would allow people with hard drives to record the match.  Yes, the match can be seen on BBC2 Wales, yes, it can be seen online – but I think the Red Button schedule should accommodate the rugby somewhere, there’s certainly an audience for it.  My suggestion – how about 10am on Saturday, and cut short the CBBC programme which is on a six hour loop?

I’ll let you know if I get a reply 🙂  P.S  Come back later in the week, we’ll have an interview with Only Fools and Horses legend John Challis…  And don’t forget you will need to retune your Freeview boxes tomorrow (Wednesday!) – Red Button moves to Channel 601, other services moving too!  Chris

Saturday September 6th 2014:

05:40 – 06:05 Channel 4 General NFL Rush Zone – New series.  Animation.
06:05 – 07:00 Channel 4 General Trans World Sport
06:40 – 08:20 BBC2 Formula 1 Formula 1 – Italian Grand Prix Practice 1
07:00 – 07:55 Channel 4 General Great North Swim – Highlights from Windermere.
07:55 – 08:55 Channel 4 Horse Racing The Morning Line
08:20 – 09:55 BBC2 Formula 1 Formula 1 – Italian Grand Prix Practice 2
09:35 – 10:00 ITV4 Football Champions League Weekly
09:55 – 11:30 BBC2 Formula 1 Formula 1 – Italian Grand Prix Practice 3 LIVE
12:10 – 14:30 BBC1 Formula 1 Formula 1 – Italian Grand Prix Qualifying LIVE
12:25 – 16:00 601 General World Equestrian Games
13:40 – 16:10 Channel 4 Horse Racing Channel 4 Racing LIVE – From Haydock, Ascot and Kempton Park.
14:30 – 16:05 BBC1 Athletics The Great North City Games LIVE
18:00 – 19:00 ITV4 Motorsport Formula E Preview.
18:00 – 19:00 Quest Motorsport World Speedway Grand Prix.
19:00 – 20:00 ITV4 Cycling Vuelta a Espana – Stage 14 Highlights.

Sunday September 7th 2014:

07:05 – 07:30 Channel 4 General Motor Racing – Highlights of British GT Championship.
07:30 – 08:30 Channel 4 General Triathlon Highlights from Castle Howard.
08:30 – 09:30 Channel 4 General National Paralympics Day.
09:30 – 12:00 BBC1 Athletics Great North Run LIVE
10:45 – 17:45 ITV4 Motorsport British Touring Car Championship LIVE from Rockingham.
12:00 – 14:30 BBC2 Athletics Great North Run LIVE
12:10 – 15:30 BBC1 Formula 1 Italian Grand Prix – LIVE
14:00 – 17:00 ITV Cycling Tour of Britain LIVE – Stage 1
15:00 – 18:00 BBC2 General Equestrianism – World Equestrian Games in France.
17:45 – 18:50 ITV4 Motorsport Formula 4 – Round 6 action.
19:00 – 20:00 Channel 5 Cricket Twenty20 Highlights – England v India.
19:00 – 20:00 ITV4 Cycling Vuelta a Espana – Stage 15 Highlights.
20:00 – 21:00 ITV4 Rugby Union Premiership Highlights – Opening week of the season (Highlights repeated on ITV at 11:15pm)
21:00 – 22:00 ITV4 Cycling Tour of Britain – Stage 1 Highlights.
21:00 – 23:00 Challenge Wrestling TNA Wresting
23:00 – 23:30 Challenge Wrestling Wrestle Talk TV

Monday September 8th 2014:

06:10 – 07:00 ITV4 Football The Big Match Revisited – from 1979.
13:00 – 16:00 ITV4 Cycling Tour of Britain – Stage 2 LIVE
19:00 – 20:00 ITV4 Cycling Vuelta a Espana – Stage 16 Highlights.
19:15 – 22:00 ITV Football International Football LIVE – Switzerland v England.  England’s 1st Euro 2016 qualifying match.  (Highlights on ITV at 10:40pm).
20:00 – 21:00 ITV4 Cycling Tour of Britain – Stage 2 Highlights.
21:00 – 22:00 ITV4 Motorsport The Motorbike Show.
23:00 – 00:00 Channel 4 General The American Football Show.  New series.
23:35 – 00:20 BBC1 Rugby League The Super League Show (network repeat on BBC2 on Tuesday at 1pm).


Tuesday September 9th 2014:

06:10 – 07:00 ITV4 Football The Big Match Revisited – from 1979.
13:00 – 16:00 ITV4 Cycling Tour of Britain – Stage 3 LIVE
19:10 – 19:25 ITV4 Football Champions League Greatest Goals
19:25 – 22:00 ITV4 Football International Football LIVE – Czech Republic v Netherlands.
22:00 – 23:00 ITV4 Cycling Tour of Britain – Stage 3 Highlights.
23:30 – 01:00 ITV4 Football International Football Highlights – Euro 2016 Qualifying.


Wednesday September 10th 2014:

01:00 – 02:55 ITV4 General Motor Racing – Formula E, then Formula 4.
13:00 – 16:00 ITV4 Cycling Tour of Britain – Stage 4 LIVE
19:00 – 20:00 BBC1 General Invictus Games Opening Ceremony on the One Show
19:00 – 20:00 ITV4 Cycling Vuelta a Espana – Stage 17 Highlights.
20:00 – 21:00 ITV4 Cycling Tour of Britain – Stage 4 Highlights.
21:00 – 22:00 ITV4 General British Superbikes – Round 9 highlights from Donnington.
22:00 – 02:00 Challenge Wrestling TNA – World Cup of Wrestling. A team based combat tournament.


Thursday September 11th 2014:

13:00 – 16:00 ITV4 Cycling Tour of Britain – Stage 5 LIVE
13:30 – 16:00 Channel 4 Horse Racing Racing LIVE – St Leger from Doncaster
19:00 – 20:00 BBC2 General Invictus Games Highlights
19:00 – 20:00 ITV4 Cycling Vuelta a Espana – Stage 18 Highlights.
20:00 – 21:00 ITV4 Cycling Tour of Britain – Stage 5 Highlights.


Friday September 12th 2014:

13:00 – 16:00 ITV4 Cycling Tour of Britain – Stage 6 LIVE
13:30 – 16:00 Channel 4 Horse Racing Racing LIVE – St Leger from Doncaster
19:00 – 20:00 ITV4 Cycling Vuelta a Espana – Stage 19 Highlights.
19:25 – 21:30 601 Rugby Union Scrum V Live – Newport v Ospreys
19:30 – 20:30 BBC2 General Invictus Games Highlights
20:00 – 21:00 ITV4 Cycling Tour of Britain – Stage 6 Highlights.
21:00 – 22:00 ITV General Piers Morgan’s Life Stories – Andrew Flintoff


My TV pick of the week – Steptoe and Son starts from Series 3 on Drama on Monday (6pm) – black and white episodes not seen in years!



One thought on “Chris’s Sport on Freeview Guide – Issue 6

  1. Reblogged this on survival of the fastest and commented:
    Keeping a variety of sport on tv in a way it is accessible to all is key to development of future talent and gaining and keeping an audience. If you can’t see a sport you can’t expect a dedicated and growing following.

    So, as MotoGP was lucky to stay on Freeview on ITV4 in a last minute deal – they show the race in full the following day and highlights of the Moto3 and Moto2 support classes, it was a pleasure to discuss it’s presence on UK tv with Chris’s Sport on Freeview blog. Here’s how the conversation went.

    P.S. sorry international readers, I commiserate and am very aware that although we now do not have our main coverage in full on a main free-to-air channel many of you are much worse off, not just with MotoGP but with many sports, hopefully more sport will be accessible to all in the future.


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