IndyCar tops F1 in US with 1.21m average viewers for Iowa Speedway

Viewership for ESPN's F1 coverage dips to 1.035m viewers for Hungarian GP.

IndyCar topped Formula One with an average of 1.21 million viewers across NBC and Peacock for its double header at Iowa Speedway.


  • Iowa Speedway saw a 31 per cent year-over-year (YoY) increase for 2023 race
  • Saturday drew in 1.145 million average viewers, the most watched Iowa race since 2008
  • Sunday saw an average viewership of 1.092 million
  • Formula One viewership fell 17 per cent YoY on Disney-owned ESPN
  • Average viewership decreased from 1.249 million to 1.035 million for the Hungarian Grand Prix

Context: IndyCar is doing a lot of things right at the moment, with the decision to significantly increase the series’ marketing budget paying dividends. Part of this spend was the recent ‘100 Days to Indy’ docuseries, which reportedly attracted around three million viewers, more than 50 per cent of which had never watched an IndyCar race before.

Consequence: In comparison to IndyCar, Formula One is offering up a stale 2023 season, with Max Verstappen guaranteed to win every race unless he runs into mechanical issues. The continued dominance of Red Bull is doing no favours to Formula One’s expansion plans in the US, and the Hungarian Grand Prix offered up the largest winning margin of the season. Viewership will continue to trend downwards unless teams can begin to bridge the gap to one of the most dominant cars in history.

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