How is the BBC faring since taking over from ITV as Britain’s F1 broadcaster? Here’s its preliminary viewing figures for the first two races:
2009 Australian Grand Prix live: 2.1m average, 3.4m peak
2009 Australian Grand Prix repeat: 2.8m average
2009 Malaysian Grand Prix live: 4.4m average, 5.2m peak
Last year ITV’s replay of the Australian Grand Prix attracted more viewers (3.8m) but its live programme had far fewer. Its figures for the Malaysian Grand Prix were below 2.8m.
It’s important to remember that the BBC will have benefitted from the later start times of these two races as well as increased attention not only in Lewis Hamilton but also Jenson Button.
These are preliminary overnight figures – when the official data is available they will be added to the F1 TV audience figures page.