The shift to a less passive audience that would rather interrelate with a race telecast than just watch comes as NASCAR negotiates its next television contract. The current deal expires after the 2014 season and by the time ’15 rolls around the TV landscape could look very different.
FOX has already renewed its agreement through 2022 to the tune of $300 million per year, or $2.4 billion over the eight years. That’s a significant bump up from the $220 million Fox is currently paying for a package of races that includes the Daytona 500. Despite a drop in ratings, an increase is also expected from other television entities for the remaining components of the contract, which include 23 other Sprint Cup races, ten inside the Chase, and the entire Nationwide Series schedule.
Incumbents TNT and ABC/ESPN are expected to again jump back into negotiations but a wild card has come to the table in the form of NBC. Desperate for quality and popular live sports programming for its NBC Sports Channel, the Peacock Network is expected to make a substantial play for a big piece of the NASCAR pie. But while the dollars may turn out to be greater in the NBC proposal, at this point the network could not match the exposure and publicity NASCAR receives from the “World Wide Leader” in sports.
As part of the mighty ESPN machine, NASCAR enjoys a hefty amount of promotion on not just auto racing-related programming but a wide range of content across a variety of television, radio and online platforms.
Written By: Motor Racing Network
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