The postponement of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Pocono Raceway allowed the Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio to air simultaneously on both NBCSN and CNBC, garnering the highest viewership of any Verizon IndyCar Series race shown on cable television since 2008.
The simulcast of the 90-lap race was watched by 929,000 viewers, marking the most for any race aired by NBC Sports Group since it began airing IndyCar events in 2009. The 2008 race at Richmond holds the record for cable telecasts, viewed by 947,000 on ESPN prior to NBC’s involvement with the series.
With NASCAR’s postponement, the Honda Indy 200 aired on two channels, earning a 0.64 rating in a year when NBC Sports Group is on pace to achieve its most-watched IndyCar season to date. After seven races aired by the family of networks, viewership is considerably higher than previous years, averaging 505,000 and marking a 28 percent increase over 2015.
The 2016 Mid-Ohio race now stands atop a group of events that have ranked as the most-watched races on the NBC Sports Group networks. The list also includes the 2015 GoPro Grand Prix of Sonoma (841,000 viewers), last year’s Honda Indy 200 (666,000), the 2011 Edmonton Indy (642,000), and the 2015 ABC Supply 500 (635,000).
Aiming to build on the gains made in television viewership, the series returns to Pocono Raceway on August 21 for the 2016 edition of the ABC Supply 500. The series will then complete the red-flagged Firestone 600 on August 27 before moving on to the final two events at Watkins Glen and Sonoma Raceway where the series will crown its 2016 champion.
All of the final four Verizon IndyCar Series races will air live on NBCSN.