Sunday’s Daytona 500 on Fox drew 8.9 million viewers, topping every primetime entertainment show on television to date this year.
For comparison, Daytona beat the NBA All-Star Game, which aired on TNT later that evening, by over 41%. That’s the largest gap between the two events in five years, says research guru Michael Mulvihill.
You’d never know that more viewers chose NASCAR than the NBA on Sunday. After all, ESPN and TNT spent the entire week promoting LeBron James’ return to Cleveland, the site of the All-Star Game.
Daytona also topped the same-day coverage of the Olympic closing ceremonies on NBC. Here’s how they compare:
The Daytona 500 (8.9m viewers) beat same day coverage of the Olympic closing ceremonies (6.6m) by 35%.
The last time the two went head to head in 2018 the closing ceremonies outrated Daytona by 59%.
— Michael Mulvihill (@mulvihill79) February 23, 2022
NASCAR is quietly experiencing significant year-over-year growth. FOX’s half of the NASCAR season, through two events, is up 94%.
I, too, choose NASCAR over LeBron.