THE SUPERCHEAP Auto Bathurst 1000 was the most-watched show on both free-to-air and Subscription TV on Sunday – even knocking reality TV behemoth The Block from the number one spot.
WORDS: Richard Craill IMAGES: Mark Walker.
ANOTHER classic Great Race finished that pushed well into prime time – a welcome side effect of the later start time – helped Sunday’s broadcast to it’s biggest numbers in three years.
Nearly 1.2 million people watched Scott McLaughlin and Alex Premat spray the champagne on Channel 10 alone on Sunday afternoon, with more than 400,000 watching on FOX Sports 506.
It capped off a strong week that saw 10’s Sunday ratings improve significantly year-on-year, and FOX Sports record significant gains across their entire slate of programming from the moment they went on air Thursday culminating in a record Great Race audience for them on Sunday.
FRIDAY afternoon’s wet-weather qualifying was watched by 290,000 on FOX and 10, with a further 121,000 watching in regional markets.
That was up 5% year on year however the bulk of the gain came from FOX, who had a massive audience of 141,000 for the session – up 19% from 118,000 in 2018.
Showing that perhaps qualifying is more for the die-hard fans, there was only 8,000 difference between the 10 and FOX Audiences on Friday, the free-to-air coverage down 6% on last year.
THE stunning top-10 shootout on Saturday evening drew 775,000 across both platforms with another 346,000 watching regionally to take the total to over 1 million.
10’s audience of 461,000 was to that point their largest of a Supercars race or session for the year, though down 8% on the nearly 500,000 who watched 12 months ago.
Once again it was FOX who showed the biggest gains with 314,000 watching on 506, up 6% year on year.
Overall the total Shootout audience was within 3% of 2018, making it the second most-watched Shootout since the new TV deal came into effect in 2015.
1.2 Million people watched a majority of the Great Race unfold, a growth of 12% from 2018.
10s audience of 818,000 was 10% larger than 2018 while FOX drew their largest ever Bathurst ratings with 469,000 watching on 506.
It’s the most watched race in Fox Sports history. FOX Sports Bathurst ratings have neatly doubled in their five years covering the sport; their 2015 race coverage drawing just 244,000.
The regional audience for the race was 561,000 on 10 meaning the combined race audience was 1.84 million people.
There was even better news to come with the podium drawing a metro audience of 911,000 on 10 and a further 731,000 in regional areas for a total of 1.642m.
Adding the FOX Sports audience it takes the total for the podium celebrations to over 2.2 million people. It’s the largest audience since 2016.
More people watched the race on FOX and 10 this year than they did in 2014 when the race was shown solely on Channel 7 (1.224m).
6 of the Top 20 shows on Free-to-Air on Sunday were Bathurst-related, while 10 of the top 20 in the Subscription TV numbers were on FOX 506.
THE BATHURST classic continued the upward climb of Supercars TV numbers, led primarily by FOX Sports impressive growth.
Of the 27 FOX Sports races / sessions we’ve logged (25 Races plus Bathurst’s shootout and qualifying sessions), 20 have been larger than 2018s equivalent.
The average audience on FOX has grown to 167,000, up 12% on the same time as last year. 10 are marginally down on last year however have had two additional free-to-air races (Perth SuperNight) than at the same time as last season.
Average audiences have climbed to 285,000 across both 10 and FOX – up 15% on 2018.
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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, regional ratings or broader reach, unless released by the sport. They also do not include streaming numbers on Kayo or SuperView, etc).