It has emerged that British Formula One fans will have to be in possession of a digital television receiver if they are to watch the American Grand Prix live next weekend.

Although the national ITV channel holds the contract to broadcast each and every race live, it has decided that the early evening slot occupied by the Indianapolis event interferes with its usual Sunday night schedule, and terrestrial viewers will have to wait until 2245 to watch the race. It will still be shown in its entirety, but almost two hours after the scheduled finish.

Digital viewers who can receive ITV2, however, will be able to follow the action as it happens at the Brickyard, with coverage starting at 1800.

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Qualifying, as it was for the Canadian Grand Prix in June, will also be shown 'as live' on the terrestrial channel, starting at 2325.

The official ITV-F1 web-site continues to bill the event as 'one of the most eagerly awaited races in years'.