NBC Sports’ first year as the exclusive media partner of INDYCAR resulted in a 9% viewership increase for the 2019 NTT IndyCar Series season vs. 2018, according to data from the Nielsen company and digital data from Adobe Analytics.
The 16* races in 2019 averaged a Total Audience Delivery (TAD) of 1.105 million viewers across NBC, NBCSN, NBCSports.com and the NBC Sports app, up 9% vs. 2018 (1.011 million on ABC, NBCSN, digital). Eight races were broadcast on NBC this season vs. five network-broadcast exposures last year on ABC. NBCSN televised eight races this year as compared to 11 last year.
The season was punctuated by the first-ever Indianapolis 500 on NBC. With a thrilling finish and 300,000+ fans in attendance, the “Greatest Spectacle in Racing” averaged a TAD of 5.475 million viewers, up 11% vs. the 2018 race (TV-only 4.913 million, ABC). Excluding the Indy 500, the seven remaining races broadcast on NBC averaged a TAD of 929,000 viewers, up 3% vs. ABC’s four non-Indy 500 races last year (906,000).
Other highlights include:
- The season-opening St. Petersburg race in March on NBCSN averaged a TAD of 499,000 viewers, making it the most-watched INDYCAR season opener in the network’s history. The TAD of 499,000 viewers was up 93% vs. NBCSN’s first race last season in Phoenix (primetime; 258,000).
- June’s Road America race on NBC posted a TAD of 1.108 million viewers to stand as NBC Sports’ most-watched INDYCAR race to date, excluding the Indy 500.
- NBCSN’s most-watched race of the 2019 season was at Pocono in August, which averaged a TAD of 553,000 viewers to stand as the most-watched INDYCAR race on cable since last season’s finale from Sonoma on NBCSN (638,000).
- The series finale Firestone Grand Prix of Monterey at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca in Monterey, Calif., averaged a TAD of 736,000 viewers on Sunday afternoon, up 15% vs. the 2018 series finale at Sonoma, which aired on NBCSN (638,000). The race averaged a household rating of 0.50 and a TV-only audience of 732,000 viewers.
Across NBC Sports streaming platforms, the 2019 NTT IndyCar Series season delivered a total of 12.9 million live minutes and an Average Minute Audience (AMA) of 6,300 viewers.
Following are the Top 10 markets for the 2019 NTT IndyCar Series season across NBC Sports:
|4||West Palm Beach||1.57|
*Note: NBC Sports is excluding weather-impacted races — Iowa in 2019 and Barber in 2018 — from all season averages.