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IRL's Versus TV ratings 50% of what ESPN gave them
Versus drew a 0.3 U.S. rating and 518,000 viewers for the recent IndyCar Series Firestone 550k at Texas Motor Speedway, an 11% increase in viewership from last year's race (467,000) and the largest audience ever for an IndyCar telecast on the network. Through four races, Versus is averaging 434,000 viewers for IndyCar coverage, up 25% from last year (348,000), but down 51% from 2008 (893,000 on ESPN/ESPN2).

The Texas race was worth just $40,809 in advertising value to sponsors. 

The recent NASCAR Gillette Fusion ProGlide 500 at Pocono drew its worst rating since 2007. However, it still managed to draw 5.3 million U.S. television viewers on TNT.  5,300,000 viewers * $0.078781098838767 = $417,540.  Therefore, the NASCAR Cup race at Pocono was worth $417,540 in promotional value to sponsors of the top teams.

Sponsorship of a top team in the Texas IndyCar race is now worth approximately 9.77% of sponsorship of a top team in the NASCAR Pocono race. Even if IndyCar were to quadruple its rating, its teams would still need to sell sponsorship at a price that is more than 60% cheaper than the price of NASCAR team sponsorship in order to be competitive in the marketplace.

2010 IndyCar TV Ratings To Date

São Paulo Indy 300 - 0.4
Honda Grand Prix of St. Petersburg - 0.6 (Last year -0.3)
Indy Grand Prix of Alabama - 0.3
Grand Prix of Long Beach - 0.54 (Last Year - 0.5)
RoadRunner Turbo Indy 300 - 0.8 (Last Year - 0.15)
94th Indianapolis 500 - 3.6 (Last Year - 4.0)
Firestone 550 - 0.36 (Last Year - 0.30)
Iowa Corn Indy 250 - Not Available Yet (Iowa will be down because last year it was on ABC )

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