Formula 1 launched its season on ESPN in the early hours of Sunday morning with the Australian Grand Prix, and the live telecast scored strongly despite the 1 a.m. Eastern start time, garnering a 0.40 rating and averaging 649,000 viewers. That’s up significantly in audience from last year (175,000 viewers) when the race aired on ESPN2 and from the last time the race aired on NBCSN in 2017 (238,000).
NASCAR’s run of year-on-year gains extended to three at Fontana’s Auto Club Speedway. Sunday’s Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race scored a 2.51 rating on FOX, averaging 4.2m viewers. That’s up from a 2.42/4.0m last year, also on the FOX broadcast network.
The NASCAR Xfinity Series from Fontana on Saturday afternoon was down a tick, though, scoring a 0.61/993,000 on FS1, compared to a 0.75/1.2m last year, also on FS1.
The NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series scored a 0.24/385,000 for its finals from Gainesville Sunday evening on FS1, down slightly from 2018’s 0.29/420,000.