Italian Grand Prix hits six year ratings low

The Italian Grand Prix hit a six year ratings low yesterday, overnight ratings figure suggest. Whilst Sky Sports F1 figures are unavailable, the BBC’s figures give a clear indication of the overall figures. Live coverage on BBC One, from 12:10 to 15:15 averaged 2.85 million viewers, a 26 percent share according to ITV Media. The figure is nearly identical to their Belgian Grand Prix viewership figure. The BBC’s race programme recorded a 15-minute peak figure of 3.90 million viewers at 14:00.

Despite BBC’s figures being identical to Belgium, Sky Sports F1’s figures increased by 36 percent. Whilst the channel averaged 336,000 for their Belgium programme, their Italian programme from 11:30 to 16:15 averaged 457,400 viewers. The lack of rise makes me wonder if Sky F1 was dented significantly more for BBC during the Belgian race day when the race went against two big Premier League games. After all, it is unusual to see Sky increase, but BBC stable. This is how things turn out…

Italian Grand Prix – Official Ratings
2002 – 2.85 million
2003 – 2.96 million
2004 – 2.63 million
2005 – 2.21 million
2006 – 1.89 million
2007 – 2.61 million
2008 – 3.55 million
2009 – 3.69 million
2010 – 3.51 million
2011 – 4.23 million
2012 – 4.39 million / 4.64 million (using ‘35 percent theory‘)
– overnight figures were 4.22 million / 4.46 million
2013 – 3.31 million / 3.47 million (overnight rating)

The official figures may push 2013’s rating above 2010, but it will be very tight. Apart from 2011 and 2012, it has to be said that the Italian race has historically rated low, the shorter race duration does not play in its favour. To quote something someone said last year, I have to say that yesterday’s race was probably one that was also “made for highlights“. Nevertheless, I do think yesterday’s figure is quite disappointing, there was no Premier League football on Sky to dent the F1, so I would have hoped for it to have been considerably above the Belgian figures from two weeks ago.

From here we move to Singapore, which has traditionally done very well, last year’s low was still 700,000 above yesterday’s rating. The fly-aways can vary, and this year it will depend too on which way the championship swings as to whether more lows are recorded, or whether Formula 1 does bounce back as the season marches towards the finale.

The 2012 Italian Grand Prix ratings report can be found here.

Update on September 13thBroadcast magazine have reported the Italian Grand Prix ratings for Sky Sports F1, as thus I have amended the report above.

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7 thoughts on “Italian Grand Prix hits six year ratings low

  1. Doh!

    What a mess. Singapore is Sky exclusive, autumn weather is here, so the figures should be good for this high profile race. If not, FOM only has itself to blame.

      • Precisely why it is even more worrying for Sky, when people have a choice, a significant proportion of those that pay for Sky F1 (about 1 third) choose to watch the BBC instead.

        One wonders what is putting people off Sky’s coverage.

        Is it the presenters?
        The skits?
        The repeated VTs?
        The lake of originality?
        The adverts?
        Etc
        Etc

        It seems even paying for something isn’t a strong enough reason to make people watch when they have a choice.

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