I seem to remember Central did quite a large chunk of sports programming in the 1990s, in fact there wasn't much Central wasn't doing for the network (or Channel 4 for that matter with ITV Schools) in the late 1980s and 1990s.
The contract for network football coverage changed in 1993, LWT had been in charge since they arrived but in 1993 it was won by Central, hence the rather abrupt change to network coverage in that year with the departure of the likes of Saint and Greavsie and the arrival of the hapless Matthew Lorenzo. But in these cases the individual ITV regions would have a role to play as well. In the case of something like The March, LWT would be responsible for the look of the coverage and hiring the presenters and so on, but there'd probably be a crew and director from the specific region. Indeed I have a Match Annual which had a behind the scenes feature and in one picture you can see technical equipment clearly labelled "THAMES OBs".
I think in the eighties LWT oversaw network football coverage, while Yorkshire did golf and I think Central were responsible for network snooker coverage. And it's been said here before that C4 Racing was initially a Three On Four production, a consortium of Thames, Anglia and Yorkshire.
As I said, I'm pretty sure the IBA didn't (and couldn't) get involved in where various programmes were made etc ?
Auf Wiedersehen Pet wasn't a Tyne Tees production, but ATV/Central's EFP unit shot scenes in Newcastle
Well, indeed, and by that regard it would have meant World in Action wouldn't have been able to do any political coverage as Westminster is in the Thames region, and so on. All the big ITV regions filmed around the UK quite happily. I think the STV example might have been a case of STV expecting to film it, and perhaps previously doing so.
Whether the editor had a list of events and cherrypicked them and then 'commissioned' the lTV company local to that event to park up the scanner for WOS.
Or, something like the daily editorial meeting that Nationwide used to have at 10.30am where the regions would 'offer' a piece/report for inclusion between on that nights show, ITV companies would 'offer' a sporting event for that Saturday's WOS.
Hence, how you got into the 'Thirsk' mess, where WOS/LWT took YTV's offer of racing at Thirsk, but then hit the TTTV juice cable issue on the day of TX.
I don't think the latter would have been the case - something like the racing calendar would have been worked out on a network basis, and via long term planning. There were probably some examples of sports where regions would film them off their own back - for example, the Lada Classic in snooker was originally only shown in Granadaland before being "promoted" to the network - but racing was a high profile sport which would have been managed at network level and the calendar mapped out over the entire year. Like football you had the added complication of sharing the coverage with the BBC.
A lot of stuff would be pooled between the regions anyway because it was too big for one region to do. In one of the IBA Yearbooks they talk about the 1975 European Cup Final at Hampden Park which was an enormous event, so while STV provided the main coverage there were also OB trucks from ATV, LWT and Tyne Tees at the venue to provide additional resources. There's a World of Sport on YouTube from 1985 where there's racing from Newcastle and athletics from Gateshead and Tyne Tees wouldn't have had the resources to cover both using only their facilities.
It's not like this was the first time they'd have shown racing from Thirsk so it's unlikely to have been a basic argument about whose course it was. I don't know what it was but it would seem more likely that Yorkshire were covering it but there was some kind of technical issue and nobody could decide if they should use a Yorkshire or Tyne Tees employee to fix it. Something like that. A lot of these disputes were about the smallest things.