11/10/2009 1:00AM

BC television ratings remain steady


National television ratings for the live broadcasts of 14 Breeders' Cup races over Nov. 6-7 were level with the ratings for the races over the past two years, according to figures provided by the parent company of the networks that televised the event.

The national rating for ESPN's nearly four-hour broadcast on Saturday from 3:30 p.m. Eastern to approximately 7:15 p.m. was a 0.9, identical to the rating for the same time slot last year, according to Mark Mandel, a spokesman for ESPN and ABC Sports, which are owned by the same company. The time slot included the live broadcast of the $5 million Classic, won by the undefeated mare Zenyatta.

The overnight rating for a two-hour broadcast on ABC prior to the ESPN Saturday broadcast was a 1.1, up 10 percent from the 1.0 rating for the same broadcast last year, according to Mandel. Overnight ratings are different from national ratings because they represent a smaller sampling of the television audience. The national rating for the ABC portion of the broadcast will be available on Thursday, Mandel said.

The national rating for the ESPN broadcast on Friday from 3:30 p.m. Eastern until 7 p.m. was a 0.3, also identical to the rating for a Friday broadcast the past two years. The Friday broadcast included live coverage of six Breeders' Cup races, whereas the Saturday broadcasts included live coverage of eight Breeders' Cup races.

Each national rating point equals approximately 1.13 million households.