Motorsport News Ratings

RATINGS WATCH: Darwin

TV NUMBERS continue to climb for the Virgin Australia Supercars Championship as McLaughlin’s Top End Triumph got people watching.

WORDS: Richard Craill IMAGE: Mark Walker

Scott McLaughlin’s Race 16 victory that delivered him the BetEasy Triple Crown was the ninth most-watched Supercars race of the season.

176,000 tuned in to FOX Sports to watch the Shell V-Power Racing rout, the second-highest subscription TV only race of the year and a massive 22% higher than the equivalent race, seen by 144,000, in 2018.

According to ratings measurement agency OzTam, 10 of Sunday’s top-20 Subscription TV programs were Supercars-related programming.

Saturday’s race was viewed by 147,000 people, up from 139,000 (an increase of 6 per cent) on last year.

Ratings on FOX Sports are now up 16% year on year as the series reaches the half-way point, with an average audience of 152,000 people watching so far this year.

Interestingly, to date it is only races on Saturday that have lost viewers compared to 2018; every single Sunday race this year has shown an increase.

The next stop in the tour takes the series to Townsville and marks the return of Network 10 and free-to-air coverage.

10 has shown eight races to date this season (two more than at the same point as last season) with an average 5-capital city / metro audience of 255,000.

While 10 numbers are consistent overall with 2018, it is interesting to note that a majority of the audience growth has come from FOX Sports.

While that won’t please those who are not fans of the subscription-centric TV model embraced by a majority of sports these days, it will please the bean counters at both Supercars and Foxtel as they start thinking about the next TV rights deal, due within the next 18 months.

With numerous news reports suggesting a likely contraction in the sports media rights market – at least from a TV perspective – we suspect the fact that Supercars has significantly increased their FOX Sports Audience, and has had bigger gains this year than both the AFL and NRL, will be a topic of discussion around boardrooms in the next few months.

TOP 10 RACES OF 2019 / AFTER 16 RACES

PosRaceLocationTimeNumberNetwork2018% Change
1R2Adelaide Sunday PM574,000FOX, 10470,00022%
2R6Grand PrixSunday PM567,000FOX, 10554,0002%
3R12Perth NightSaturday Night444,000FOX, 10184,000141%
4R1Adelaide Saturday PM397,000FOX, 10336,00018%
5R11Perth NightFriday Night357,000FOX, 10120,000198%
6R5Grand PrixSaturday PM348,000FOX, 10384,000-9%
7R8TasmaniaSunday PM199,000FOX  161,00024%
8R3Grand PrixFriday Mid184,000FOX, 10170,0008%
9R16DarwinSunday PM176,000FOX144,00022%
10R10Phillip IslandSunday PM156,000FOX138,00013%

NOTE: Perth 2018 races were in daytime programming and FOX Sports only.

SOURCES: TV Tonight, Mediaweek, TV Black Box.

(NOTE: Numbers are overnight metro (5 capital city) and Foxtel ratings supplied by the ratings agency to media outlets and do not include any additional reporting including time shifted content or broader reach, unless released by the sport. They also do not include streaming numbers on Kayo or SuperView, etc).