Found September 25, 2012 on Awful Announcing:

A sport we don't talk about too much is auto racing.  However, the popularity of IndyCar in America took a harsh step back in 2012 that's worth taking notice. The racing league posting its lowest ratings ever on NBC Sports Network, a drop of 27% from last season according to Sports Media Watch. The races didn't even average 300,000 viewers on NBC Sports after topping 400,000 in 2011. NBC Sports started airing IndyCar in 2009. ABC also saw ratings drop 17% from last year's season, although the Indy 500 was only down 5% from last year.

There are plenty of reasons to get into for the waning popularity for IndyCar, and perhaps the most significant is the full-time departure of Danica Patrick to the NASCAR Nationwide Series. Regardless of how you feel about Patrick's skill on the racetrack, she draws eyeballs to the sport, and that's an inarguable fact.

Another reason for IndyCar's struggles this year could be tied to the tragic death of Dan Wheldon in the final race of the 2011 season. Wheldon's death cast a shadow over the entire sport, and may have disenfranchised fans after last season's final race in Las Vegas. 

IndyCar has lost tons of fans to NASCAR over the last couple decades, but this latest news may be even more concerning because this is one unified series we're talking about. A drop of over a quarter of your television viewership is staggering and the brass is going to need to seriously consider some big changes for the 2013 season to draw some viewers back in to open wheel racing.

[h/t: Sports Media Watch]


9/27/12 - Danica Patrick

Danica Patrick on FOX Sports DayBreak

Danica Patrick AAA 400 Race Preview

KANNAPOLIS, N.C., – Danica Patrick has raced on concrete surfaces many times during her career, having done so in IZOD IndyCar Series, NASCAR K&N Pro Series East, NASCAR Nationwide Series and even NASCAR Sprint Cup Series competition. But she knows as well as anyone that her concrete starts in four different racing series can’t fully prepare her for Sunday’s NASCAR Sprint...

JR Motorsports OneMain Financial 200 Race Preview

JR Motorsports director of competition, Ryan Pemberton, will serve as interim crew chief for Danica Patrick’s No. 7 team for the remainder of the 2012 season. Pemberton occupied the position last weekend at Kentucky Speedway where Patrick finished 14th. CONCRETE STATS - In three races on concrete surfaces this year, the JRM teams have amassed one top-five and three...

SBD Interview: NASCAR Driver Tony Stewart

Tony Stewart is one of the most popular and recognizable drivers in NASCAR. He currently is caught up in NASCAR's playoffs, otherwise known as The Chase. He also serves as a co-owner of Stewart-Haas Racing, a racing team that consists of himself, Ryan Newman and Danica Patrick. I had the opportunity to interview him, and we discussed the state of NASCAR, the challenges he...
All Sports News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.