Sky Sports F1’s extensive coverage of testing peaked with 119,000 viewers across two airings, overnight figures show. The two and a half hour show, also across two airings, averaged 65,000 viewers.
The live show, from 14:00 to 16:30, averaged 32,000 viewers (0.5%), peaking with 44,000 at the conclusion of the session. The repeat, from 18:30 to 21:00, averaged 33,000 viewers (0.2%), peaking with 75,000 at 20:30. At this point you are probably thinking “but isn’t adding up two separate airings at different times making the figures look better than what they really are?”. On the one hand, yes. But on the other hand, the amount of people that would have watched both airings is incredibly small meaning that at least 95 percent of the viewers will be unique. Another factor here is that not all of the 32,000 viewers that watched the live show will have watched it ‘live’ anyway, and instead will have watched it at some point before the 02:00 cut-off to be included in the BARB overnight ratings.
So to have a peak audience of 119,000 viewers in my opinion is extremely impressive, especially as that does not include Sky 3D which will probably add a few extra thousand onto that figure. Also, the BARB ratings do not include those that watched on Sky Go, meaning that you are looking at about a 140,000 peak across the two airings when you factor those two things in.
Below is a full round-up of yesterday’s ratings, excluding Sky 3D who’s figures are not publicly released:
14:00 – Live Testing: 32k (0.5%)
– peak: 44k (0.52%) at 16:00
18:30 – Testing Repeat: 33k (0.2%)
– peak: 75k (0.34%) at 20:30
21:00 – Testing Round-Up: 41k (0.2%)
– peak: 43k (0.19%) at 21:00
21:15 – Ted’s Notebook: 34k (0.2%)
– peak: 44k (0.2%) at 21:25
Heading into the weekend, there is not a significant amount of opposition for the testing, with no Six Nations and unusually only one Premier League game live on Sky, so testing might just pick up more viewers than many might expect into Saturday and Sunday with dry weather and a lot of running anticipated. If early figures are to go by, then Sky have made the right decision to broadcast testing live, and may well be pushing Formula One Management (FOM) to let them do it again in the future.