horse racing

Preakness ratings rise

NBC’s overnight ratings (which measure the nation’s top 55 TV markets)  for Saturday’s Preakness telecast were up 24 percent over last year with a 6.3, and the race portion (the last 45 minutes)  was up 27 percent at 7.9. The ratings were the highest since Smarty Jones won in 2004.

Here are the top 20 markets (race portion ratings):

1.  Baltimore               25.1

2.  Louisville               21.3

3.  Fort Myers                17.3

4.  West Palm Beach   14.8

5.  Columbus               13.3

6.  Buffalo                   13.0

7.  Dayton                    11.7

8.  Providence             11.5

T9.  Tampa                  11.2

T9.  Orlando                11.2

11.  Albuquerque         10.9

12.  Richmond             10.8

13.  Pittsburgh             10.7

T14.  Indianapolis       10.5

T14.  Hartford             10.5

16.  Nashville              10.4

17.  Knoxville             10.0

18.  Memphis              9.6

T19.  Cincinnati          9.3

T19.  Greenville          9.3

Note how Albuquerque broke into the top 20 as people tuned in to check out the hometown horse, Derby winner Mine That Bird.

Chicks dig the horses

 derbyhat

Is it the hats?

NBC’s latest news release on its Kentucky Derby ratings contained this tidbit: The telecast drew 2 percent more female viewers than male viewers. The Derby is one of just three major sporting events, along with the Winter and Summer Olympics, that draw a bigger female component, NBC reports.

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Baltimore-centric entry: ESPN’s Quint Kessenich predicts his NCAA lacrosse final four in news release today, and he says the Division I semifinals will be without a team from Maryland. The former Johns Hopkins goalie goes with Virginia, Princeton, Duke and Syracuse.

ESPN also sent out a short Q&A with Kessenich. Read it below. (more…)