Nascar's return to live racing generates big ratings on Fox

Kevin Harvick Brad Keselowski

Nascar's return to live racing at the weekend generated impressive domestic television ratings, with the Real Heroes 400 at Darlington Raceway delivering 6.32 million U.S. viewers on the main Fox broadcast network.

The figure means that the Nascar Cup Series is averaging 5.83 million viewers in 2020, which represents a two per cent decrease compared to past year but comes despite the interruption of the season and a rain-affected Daytona 500.

According to The Weather Channel, there is a 100-percent chance of thunderstorms in the Darlington area on Tuesday, 90 percent Wednesday and 90 percent Thursday. If both the Xfinity and Cup races are postponed, Xfinity will run at noon ET Thursday and Cup will run at 7 p.m. ET Thursday.

There was no one in the grandstands watching at Darlington Raceway but millions flocked to their televisions on Sunday to see the first live NASCAR race since the novel coronavirus outbreak shuttered North American sport two months ago. Wednesday's race at Darlington is scheduled for 228 laps, meaning it'll need to run at least 114 laps to be deemed official.

The NASCAR series had been put on hold for 10 weeks during the COVID-19 pandemic as the roaring engines of the racing championship were silenced by the coronavirus.

The race was won by Kevin Harvick, who admitted it was a freaky feeling to cross the winning line and be greeted by total silence from the stands, which are usually packed with crowds of more than 100,000 fans. The race was held without fans in attendance and featured strict NASCAR safety protocols that included health screenings and team attendance limits.



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