High Stakes, High Ratings
The telecast drew a 6.0 overnight rating and a 15 share Saturday, when favored Point Given raced to a 2\-length victory over A P Valentine in the second event of thoroughbred racing's Triple Crown series.
That was 30% higher than last year's 5.3/13 on ABC, and the best since 1990's 7.8/20.
Just like the Kentucky Derby two weeks ago, which drew its highest ratings since 1992, the starting time of the Preakness was moved back about a half-hour in an effort to draw more viewers.
The first half-hour of Saturday's telecast earned ratings of 4.1/11, a 24% increase over last year's 3.3/8. The ratings increased to 6.8/16, a 28% improvement, over last year's 5.2/13, in the next 1 hour, 15 minutes.
The Preakness was followed by Game 1 of the NBA's Western Conference final between the San Antonio Spurs and Los Angeles Lakers, which drew 7.0/15. That represented a 13% increase over last year's 6.2/15 for Game 1 between the Portland Trail Blazers and the Lakers.
Overnight ratings measure the 49 largest TV markets, covering about 60% of the country. Each rating point represents 1% of the TV homes in those markets.
National ratings are due tomorrow.