Daytona and Texas Races Score Big Television Ratings for NASCAR
19 August 1997Daytona and Texas Races Score Big Television Ratings for NASCAR
CONCORD, N.C., Aug. 18 -- A review of the record-setting television ratings during the first half of the 1997 NASCAR Winston Cup season shows that events at Daytona International Speedway and Texas Motor Speedway rank as the top two favorites with sports fans across the nation. The Daytona 500 drew an 8.6 rating, while Texas Motor Speedway's Interstate Batteries 500 scored a 6.6 rating, the highest in history for any NASCAR racing event other than the Daytona 500. Both races were televised on CBS. More importantly, the Daytona 500 was seen by 8,342,000 households and Texas' Interstate Batteries 500 was seen in 6,416,000 households. Traditionally, it is estimated that 2.5 people per household watch sporting events on television. Based on that formula, 20,855,000 people saw Daytona and 16,040,000 watched the Interstate Batteries 500. "The record ratings show just how important Texas Motor Speedway is in spreading the popularity of NASCAR Winston Cup racing to fans around the country," said Texas Motor Speedway general manager Eddie Gossage. "The anticipation leading to the inaugural race here at Texas was unprecedented in motorsports and that's why we were fortunate in scoring higher ratings than recent inaugural races in Indianapolis and Fontana, Calif. The national sports fan anticipated the opening of Texas Motor Speedway with great interest and tuned in to the action. Texas is a great sports market." Atlanta Motor Speedway and The California Speedway tied for third with a 5.5 rating for their events, although Atlanta Motor Speedway was seen in approximately 15,000 more households. Both of those events were on ABC. Speedway Motorsports , the owner and operator of Atlanta, Bristol, Charlotte and Texas Motor Speedways and 600 Racing and the operator of Sears Point Raceway, is a leading marketer and promoter of motorsports in the United States. 1997 NASCAR Winston Cup First Half-Season Television Ratings Rank Date Event/Location/Network Rating Households Est. Viewers 1. 2/16 Daytona 500/Daytona/CBS 8.6 8,342,000 20,855,000 2. 4/6 Interstate Batteries 500/ Texas/CBS 6.6 6,416,000 16,040,000 3.(tie) 3/9 Primestar 500/Atlanta/ABC 5.5 5,335,000 13,337,500 6/22 California 500/California/ ABC 5.5 5,320,000 13,330,000 5. 2/23 Goodwrench 400/Rockingham/ TNN 5.4 3,685,000 9,212,500 6.(tie) 3/2 Pontiac 400/Richmond/ESPN 5.3 3,752,000 9,380,000 8/2 Brickyard 400/Indianapolis/ ABC 5.3 5,180,000 7,790,300 8. 3/23 TranSouth 400/Darlington/ ESPN 5.2 3,728,000 9,320,000 9. 5/25 Coca-Cola 600/Charlotte/TBS 5.0 3,542,000 8,855,000 10.(tie)4/13 Food City 500/Bristol/ESPN 4.8 3,405,000 8,512,500 4/20 Goody's 500/Martinsville/ ESPN 4.8 3,438,000 8,595,000 6/1 Miller 500/Dover/TNN 4.8 3,309,000 8,272,500 6/8 Pocono 500/Pocono/TNN 4.8 3,342,000 8,355,000 14. 6/15 Miller 400/Michigan/CBS 4.4 4,279,000 10,697,500 15. 5/10 Winston 500/Talladega/ESPN 4.1 2,914,000 7,285,000 NOTE: The number of households capable of receiving broadcast network (CBS & ABC) coverage in the United States totals 100 million homes. The number of households capable of receiving cable (TNN, TBS, ESPN) coverage in the United States totals 70 million homes. Ratings equal the average percentage of homes that have tuned in to watch the broadcast, and the number of households can vary significantly based on broadcast coverage versus cable coverage. SOURCE Speedway Motorsports, Inc.