Breeders' Cup TV Ratings Stagnant

Ratings for ESPN's coverage of the Breeders' Cup improved only marginally from last year's low numbers.

National ratings for ESPN’s coverage of the Breeders’ Cup World Championships Oct. 27 from Monmouth Park in New Jersey show only marginal improvement over last year’s anemic numbers. The telecast, which aired from noon-6:15 EST, drew a .75 national rating, up slightly from 2006’s .7 number. The .75 translates to approximately 1.05-million viewers.

ESPN reports what is termed a cable rating, which is different from the national rating. The cable rating was .87 this year, compared to .85 in 2006, or a rise of 2%. ESPN reported that the 1,053,892 viewers represented a 6% improvement from 993,952 a year ago. Viewership peaked in the final hour, when 1,320,488 people tuned in.

The results of the last two years represent a roughly 50% decline in viewers from 2005, the last year that NBC aired the Breeders’ Cup.

The Breeders’ Cup telecast aired opposite college football coverage on CBS and ABC, and a Nancy Kerrigan ice-skating special on NBC. FOX did not air sports programming during that time.

ESPN reported a .3 rating for the Friday coverage of the Breeders' Cup from 4-6 p.m. EST.