The NTT IndyCar season got off to a good ratings start for NBC and Peacock Sunday. Their coverage of the season-opening Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg (won by Team Penske’s Scott McLaughlin, seen at center above) averaged 1.429 million viewers across NBC and Peacock, the highest number for an IndyCar opener in 11 years and a large boost over last year’s season-opener. Here’s more on that from a NBC release:
The GPSP averaged a Total Audience Delivery (TAD) of 1.429 million viewers on NBC and Peacock, making it not only the most-watched INDYCAR season opener in 11 years (St. Pete, 2011, 1.840 million, ABC), but also the most-watched non-Indy 500 INDYCAR race in 11 years.
Sunday’s GPSP was up 53% compared to the 2021 INDYCAR season opener at Barber (932,000 viewers; April 18) and up 15% vs. last year’s St. Pete race (1.246 million; April 25), both on NBC.
Bolstered by streaming on Peacock, the race delivered an Average Minute Audience (AMA) of 23,800 viewers, the largest streaming audience on record for an INDYCAR race, excluding the Indy 500. The AMA also includes streaming on NBCSports.com and the NBC Sports app via authentication.
Viewership for the race peaked with a TV-only audience of 1.509 million viewers and averaged a household rating of 0.89. TAD is based on data from Nielsen and Adobe Analytics.
As noted with Super Bowl ratings discussion, NBC is doing their streaming metrics a little differently than others this year, especially when it comes to factoring in co-viewing. However, that isn’t as large of a factor in this case as it was with the Super Bowl, as this streaming audience is quite a small portion of the overall audience; the TV-only broadcast averaged 1.405 million viewers 2+, as per Mitch Metcalf at ShowBuzz Daily, which lines up with that 23,800 AMA streaming audience to give the overall 1.429 million number.
In any case, these are solid numbers for both this race and for any IndyCar season opener. We’ll see where the numbers go for NBC and Peacock in their next IndyCar broadcast, which will be from Texas Motor Speedway on Sunday, March 20, at 12:30 pm ET on NBC and Peacock.