Race Weekend Central

O’Reilly Auto Parts 500 TV Ratings Low, but Flat

The overnight ratings are in for Sunday’s O’Reilly Auto Parts 500 at Texas Motor Speedway, and they’re not great.  The race earned a 2.5 overnight rating, one of the lowest ratings of the 2017 season.  The good news here is that the rating is flat with last year, meaning that it did not decrease.  However, the rating is still at an historically low level for a race airing on the FOX Broadcast Network as opposed to FOX Sports 1.  It is 14 percent lower than the 2.9 rating the race drew in 2015 on Saturday night.

Part of the reason for the low rating was the fact that the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series was up directly against CBS’ broadcast of the Final Round of The Masters from Augusta National Golf Club on Sunday.  The Masters earned a 7.6 overnight rating, the lowest since at least 2005.  However, that was still enough to lure potential race viewers away from the Cup race.

Final ratings for the race will be released later this week.

About the author

Phil Allaway has three primary roles at Frontstretch. He's the manager of the site's FREE e-mail newsletter that publishes Monday-Friday and occasionally on weekends. He keeps TV broadcasters honest with weekly editions of Couch Potato Tuesday and serves as the site's Sports Car racing editor.

Outside of Frontstretch, Phil is the press officer for Lebanon Valley Speedway in West Lebanon, N.Y. He covers all the action on the high-banked dirt track from regular DIRTcar Modified racing to occasional visits from touring series such as the Super DIRTcar Series.

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Never mind that the last time this race opposed the Masters in 2006, it had a 4.8 overnight/5.4 final rating. The Masters that year drew a 9.0 rating, so the math is certainly not in NASCAR’s favor.
I guess it’s either run it Sunday afternoon and have some semblance of a race or run it Saturday night like in the past as a lesser alternative to paint drying and grass growing.


Isn’t it time to stop making excuses? The Masters is worth watching. Anything else is worth watching. Brian’s product isn’t. And the “expert” analyst doesn’t help.

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