UK Television audience collapses for Singapore GP

italy f1 tv

The Singapore GP attracted the lowest number of viewers in the UK since its its inception. Combined SKY and BBC viewer numbers were just 3.45m, whilst ITV in the UK attracted 3.98 million for its coverage of the Rugby World Cup game between New Zealand and Argentina.

ITV’s broadcast was at the time of the BBC’s F1 highlights.

BBC’s audience fall year on year for the event was 25%, whilst SKY who had the race exclusively live saw their viewing figures fall by 32% year on year.

An average of just 681,000 (6.6% of the TV audience) watched the live Sky broadcast, further evidence the SKY F1 channel is failing to gain traction (viewer numbers from The F1 broadcasting blog).

Meanwhile in Germany-land – home of Mercedes and Sebastian Vettel, viewing figures for the race rose. In 2014, 4.32 million watched the race, whereas on Sunday this number climbed to 5.26 million (32% of the TV audience).

In Austria, Broadcaster ORF is reported to not be renewing its contract to broadcast Formula One at the end of 2016. This TV broadcaster has been with the sport for decades, popularising the sport in the era of Jochan Rindt and Niki Lauda.

A recent Italian publication produced the above graph which shows the fall in Italy’s F1 TV audience from 2000-2014.

16 responses to “UK Television audience collapses for Singapore GP

    • You say that but global viewership slipped steadily from 600 million viewers in 2008 to 425 million in 2014.

      • And it’s the main era with transition to pay tv. What’s the excuse for drop before that or even after? FIA/FOM doing a great job (!)

      • I’m confused. Singapore has only started holding races in 2008, This chart makes it seem like it’s only for the Singapore race, since there are no fluctuations during a year, just a single data point.

        • From the post:

          “A recent Italian publication produced the above graph which shows the fall in Italy’s F1 TV audience from 2000-2014.”

          Looks like the chart is yearly Italian F1 viewers, not the Singapore race.

  1. way too many drunken, delusional, whacko Brits gracing Silverstone/Hockenhiem/Sepang.

    haha. just kidding…
    the FIA in its’ infinite wisdom needs to write a rule that the leader needs to “take out” any such offender for the sake of the show 🙂

    I watch sky streaming for free here in ‘Murica but am willing to pay a bit…. they are good! but they cannot sustain this sorta dis-interest forever.

    am guessing I will see only the Monaco GP only on ABC Wide World of Sports (oops) in a couple of years. – like it was in the mid ’60’s….

  2. I think FOM and Bernie need to take the example set by MotoGP and put it all online on a subscription basis.

    Most of us would pay fifty to a hundred bucks a year to watch F1 without commercial interruptions. Get some dedicated commentators, throw in the feeder races and a few levels of access for variety.
    If anyone disagrees with me, just sign up on and see what you’re missing, what F1 is missing.

    • Totally agreed. I’m in Malaysia and we paid a lot of money for pay tv but the commercials are killing it. It seems like there are more commercials in pay tv station than free to air tv.. shameful greedy capitalist

  3. Well since the BBC didn’t do it live and I really didn’t want to watch commercial infested (german) RTL i switched to streaming sky. Unfortunately the stream broke down halfway trough so I did watch the rest at RTL. But only because there was no better option. Belgian coverage has to be the worst in the world, so going there was a big no no. Next time I try using acestream, apperently they even do HD streams of the sky Programms.

    • I am lucky, being in the UK I have access to all feeds from F1 and pay for the sky channel but (and here is the big one) given the choice I always watch the BBC. I find sky so…football (if you know what I mean) daft stories of what the drivers have for lunch or stupid cut aways and ad sections,I expected more from sky than what we get, I really wanted details of the cars/tyres/workings of the sport but we get the washed out,low brow korma flavour transmission think what you could do with a whole channel dedicated to F1..go into detail of past cars/races/drivers maybe a slot for designs that never raced or even a materials section on how parts are cast and machined. Most ,if not all, fans have some education and we know our sport so I really wish they would stop dumbing it down then maybe it would be worth £100 a year subscription but until the BBC renew a free deal then as true fans we are over a barrel with our pants down. Now the tin foil hat time…wait until Mr Button gets his slot with MB, I tend to switch off to the Martin talk during the race and would love to have a JB feed a bit like the murry/hunt days of old

      • Well, on Belgian tv you get virtually no pre show, nor is there much of an after. Coupled with a member of a popular boy band who does the commentary (and knows little about it) and a has been who’s only connection to f1 is that he bought a test once from minardi, who still talks in the way as if he’s a current member of the drivers. I get your point but I’ve had worse so sky wins for me… (but if the beeb does show it full I’ll always watch them.)

  4. It doesn’t matter how competitive a sport is, if it isn’t on free-to-air TV, it’ll suffer. Especially at times as this with the global crisis which makes people think twice about how they go about spending their money.

    As for this race in particular, I read that McLaren were nowhere, that Hamilton/Merc retired and that Ric never managed to challenge Vettel. So it was a bit of a procession at the front. So why watch the highlights? I also watched NZ-Argentina.

  5. F1 isn’t that exciting at present, that’s a big issue for the sport. Why isn’t it exciting? Because it’s not really competitive, Mercedes drive off (apart from the odd race where they balls it up) and that’s it. For the past 18 months you’ve had a pretty solid idea it’ll be one of the two Mercs winning, and as Hamilton mentioned the other day, they’ve not had to push flat out. So why watch someone cruising round for two hours? It’s about as interesting as 2011 or the latter half of 2013.

    All that said, Singapore wasn’t that bad a race and with a wet weekend predicted in Japan maybe that’ll be a little more exciting than many Merc demonstration races of this season. Fingers crossed!

    • However, I am really surprised that so few people watched the Singapore GP considering what happened in qualifying. I guess the Britons simply didn’t like the idea of watching another fellow brit lose so badly.

  6. Has anyone had a look at how many people are watching illegal streams of F1 races and if that’s had any significant impact on the viewing figures for F1 ?

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