While Talks Continue With Major Distributors For FS1, Fox Unveils New Speed Schedule
Just five days before the launch of FS1, Fox Sports still has yet to cut deals with at least three of the four biggest distributors: DirecTV, Dish Network and Time Warner Cable. The three distributors said they are still in discussions with Fox to carry the channel, which launches Saturday. Distributors that do not cut a deal for FS1 by Saturday will continue to carry Speed, though it will be a stripped down version of the motorsports channel. Fox Sports provided the Tribune listings service with the programming lineup for Speed for the first nine days after FS1's launch, and it features a mix of re-runs and paid programming. In the week after FS1 launches, Speed will open primetime at 8:00pm ET with shows like "Faster Than," "Car Science" and "Pumped." The 9:00pm hour has shows like "Drag Race High," "Stuntbusters" and "Wrecked." The 10:00pm hour has shows like "Pinks," "Speedmakers" and "Hard Parts." Primetime for Aug. 17, when FS1 launches, will feature re-airs of "Pumped," "Wrecked" and "Hard Parts." Fox Sports has little reason to make Speed a high-quality channel after Aug. 17, since it wants distributors to agree to take the more expensive FS1. Distributors pay around $0.23 per subscriber per month for Speed, according to figures from SNL Kagan. Fox is seeking $0.80 per subscriber per month for FS1 initially -- a rate that would increase to around $1.50 toward the end of the multiyear carriage deals it is seeking.