IndyCar Opens Season with Three-Year High in Overnights


The 2011 IndyCar season raced to a strong start on ABC last weekend.

Sunday’s IndyCar Series Honda Grand Prix of St. Petersburg earned a 1.4 overnight rating on ABC, up 338% from the same race on ESPN last year (0.32), which was postponed from Sunday to Monday due to rain.

Excluding the Indianapolis 500, Sunday’s race ranks as the highest rated IndyCar telecast in the metered markets since the 2007 Honda 200 (1.9). The ’07 race had a lead-in from the final round of the British Open.

This is the second straight week ABC has drawn a decent overnight for one of the non-major sports. On March 20, the network drew a 1.3 overnight for the finals of tennis’ BNP Paribas Open.