The Spanish Grand Prix dropped to its lowest rating since 2009, overnight figures show. BBC One’s programme from 12:10 to 15:15 recorded an average of 3.285 million viewers, a 29 percent share. Sky Sports F1’s exact programme figure is unknown, however, it failed to make ITV Media’s top 10, meaning it had under 483,000 viewers from 11:30 to 16:20.
The joint average is therefore around about 3.77 million viewers – however that is an estimate and could be slightly lower depending on Sky’s exact figure. Either way, using my usual ‘35 percent theory‘, applied to Sky Sports F1 only to account for its longer run-time, brings the average up to 3.94 million.
Spanish Grand Prix – Official Ratings
2002 – 3.72 million
2003 – 3.20 million
2004 – 3.04 million
2005 – 2.72 million
2006 – 2.33 million
2007 – 3.15 million
2008 – 3.51 million
2009 – 3.89 million
2010 – 4.04 million
2011 – 4.75 million
2012 – 4.09 million / 4.28 million
2013 – 3.77 million / 3.94 million*
* overnight figure and approximation of Sky Sports F1 figure
The figures unfortunately do not point to a positive trend. The combined factors of lack of British success and football competition will not have helped. In 2011, Sebastian Vettel was fighting Lewis Hamilton for victory until the last lap, whereas in comparison yesterday was a Fernando Alonso dominating performance, a relative turn off for the British audience.
The peak figures are again not the greatest, a combined peak of 4.83 million viewers, with a 36.1 percent share. BBC had 4.13 million at its peak, with Sky recording 703,000 viewers. The split was 86 percent versus 14 percent, which compared to last year is bigger in BBC’s favour. BBC’s peak is down 470,000 year-on-year, with Sky’s peak down 350,000, despite having a much lower audience reach. The 2011 peak was 6.2 million, so the difference of having a last lap showdown can account for an extra 25 percent of your audience.
Monaco should be interesting from a ratings perspective, as it is a Sky exclusive race. Given that it is considered one of the ‘crown jewels’, surely Sky must see some kind of uplift from its usual exclusive race weekend ratings. I imagine they will be hoping for more viewers, at least a peak of nearly 2 million if the weather in the UK plays in their favour.