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IMG Sports Media have been announced as the new producers of Channel 4’s racing coverage from January.

The new four-year agreement will see former BBC racing presenter Clare Balding take a leading role in coverage of meetings such as the Cheltenham Festival, Royal Ascot and the Grand National.

The deal, in operation from January 2013 until December 2016, runs alongside Channel 4’s four-year media agreement with Racecourse Media Group.

In addition, Channel 4 Racing sponsors, Dubai, have signed a new four-year extension deal until 2016.

Balding will be the lead presenter from January 1, with both familiar and new faces forming a team which will be announced later in the year.

“I am absolutely thrilled that Channel 4 has asked me to be a part of their new racing team,” Balding said.

“Racing is my ‘home’ sport and I am delighted that I will still be part of its coverage on TV.

“I am excited by Channel 4’s plans for their coverage and the way in which they have committed to expanding the profile of jockeys, trainers and horses.

“I look forward to working with IMG Sports Media who have a high quality reputation for sports programming.”

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