06/08/2014 1:17PM

Belmont Stakes overnight ratings second highest ever


The overnight rating for the Belmont Stakes broadcast Saturday on NBC was a 12.9, the second-highest rating of all-time for the race, behind the 15.9 overnight rating posted for the 2004 race, when Smarty Jones was bidding for the Triple Crown, the network said on Sunday.

The broadcast, from 4:30 to 7:15 p.m. Eastern, had a 29 share, a measure of how many televisions in use were tuned to the broadcast, NBC said. The 2004 broadcast had a slightly higher share, at 31.

The rating was a 36 percent gain over the last time a Triple Crown was at stake, in 2008, when the overnight was a 9.5 and the share was a 21. In that year, Big Brown was bidding for the Triple Crown.

Compared with 2013, when no Triple Crown was on the line, the overnight rating this year was up 180 percent. The overnight last year was a 4.6 with an 11 share. Palace Malice, who won the nationally televised Met Mile on the Belmont undercard, won the 2013 Belmont.

Game 2 of the Stanley Cup finals between the New York Rangers and the Los Angeles. Kings, which immediately followed the Belmont broadcast, had a 4.6 overnight rating, nearly a third of the Belmont rating, according to NBC’s figures. The hockey game’s ratings were up 59 percent compared with Game 2 of the finals last year, which appeared on NBC Sports Network.

Anonymous More than 1 year ago
TV ratings were okay. Per capita wagering on-track was only 10% better than it had been for the Kentucky Derby. Young people there for the party; few knew anything about what they were betting their $5 on. Yesterday, Belmont returned to its' cavernous, empty self. Too bad.
russell More than 1 year ago
Nothing tops a horse going for the TC in NY. They bet $150 mill at NY today. It was a great card. NYRA finally got it right.
Quite A Dude More than 1 year ago
Look at the tremendous excitement this year's attempt at the Triple Crown created. Horse racing is on fumes in terms of popularity. Another couple of the Belmont/Triple Crown failures and the public will quit again, perhaps forever. Make the appropriate changes. Spread out the Triple Crown races so that horses shooting at the Triple Crown will have a fairer shot at accomplishing the fete... Don't lose this opportunity to rebuild fan base...
Marvin Friedman More than 1 year ago
Yo dude ,at its heart its still a gambling game ,the Belmont is open to anyone who thinks they got a shot,fairy tails don't always have a happy ending.The public loves not only a good horserace, but watching and wagering on good horses.We were lucky enough to enjoy the great drama cc provided