Extreme E extends broadcast reach in Russia with TV Start deal

The Ocean X-Prix at Lac Rose on 30 May 2021. Photo: Charly Lopez/LAT Images

Electric SUV racing series Extreme E has confirmed that Russian broadcaster TV Start will air the Championship’s debut season as well as race highlights, review, preview and Magazine shows – in English and Russian – on its linear channel. The coverage will extend to TV Start’s regions in Ukraine, Latvia, Estonia, Lithuania, Moldova, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, Armenia and Georgia. In addition, Extreme E’s race coverage will be available to view on TV Start’s digital platform, www.tvstart.ru.

Russia is one of the most vulnerable countries to climate change, and this has been reflected by growing environmental awareness across its regions both according to polls and the number of observed campaigns in the country. However, a positive knock-on effect of this has been an increase in the population’s uptake of electric mobility which continues to rise.

Statistics show that for the second year running, Russia has set records for electric car sales that even outpace its eco-aware Scandinavian neighbours. In 2020, 95% more electric vehicles were sold in Russia compared to 2019 – due in part to customs duties being eliminated on EV imports as well as a general population response to environmental concerns.

Ali Russell, chief marketing officer at Extreme E, said: “Extreme E is delighted to be reaching Russian audiences through TV Start. Russia is a hugely important region for our series and coupled with the fact that there is an increasing awareness of environmental issues and interest in the EV sector here, it makes me even more pleased to be bringing viewers our unique and thrilling electric racing package.

“By shining a spotlight on the environmental crisis through our sport for purpose series, we hope to not only raise awareness among audiences, but also highlight changes that can be made to live a less carbon-intensive lifestyle and protect our planet.”

Vladimir Shirokov, chief producer at Start TV, said: “We are glad to partner with Extreme E and to be able to provide our audience with such a beautiful electric racing series of high quality, not just devoted to a very important matter of our time – environmental issues – but making a real impact in this area. All the X Prix events are certainly unique and picturesque. We are looking forward to our further co-operation and wish Extreme E every success and growth in its meaningful and not easy endeavour.”

Extreme E has already held four events this year. The first in April from the dramatic backdrop of AlUla in Saudi Arabia, Senegal’s stunner at Lac Rose in May, August’s X Prix in Greenland and October’s event on the beautiful island of Sardinia. One more X Prix is to follow in December in Dorset, UK.

However, there is a wider purpose to the championship apart from racing entertainment, and that is around the environment which is unfortunately under threat. The locations that the championship visits are all, in some way, ae affected by environmental issues such as desertification, deforestation, melting ice caps, plastic pollution and rising carbon emissions.

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