Wednesday, 10 May 2017 12:20

Analysis: Sustaining interest in Supercars

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Into the third season of the current television deal, how is interest in Supercars tracking? As with most Australian sports, attracting crowds while also asking fans to pay for watching all events live on television is proving a challenge, as we examine in V8X Supercar Magazine issue #98.

Issue #98 is on sale now in stores with the digital edition available in the official V8X app (in the App Store and Google Play), online at DigitalEdition.V8XMagazine.com.au and in the Magzter app store.

CLICK HERE for more information on issue #98.

Supercars CEO James Warburton is adamant: "The strength of our sport is in its wide appeal. From white to blue collar, four to 84, surgeons to barristers and tradies to truckies... no sport in this country has such a broad and diverse base."

But that diverse base has been tested with the pay-television deal now in its third season. Fans wanting to watch every event live must subscribe to pay-television provider Foxtel, otherwise they make do with delayed highlights outside of six marquee events.

Supercars' crowd figures have come under the spotlight following a significant drop in attendances to the season-opening Clipsal 500 Adelaide and the struggle to attract fans to Phillip Island, Queensland Raceway, Winton and other permanent facilities.

The National Rugby League (NRL) is also dealing with this dilemma. Crowds have slumped in a season in which Foxtel launched the Fox League channel, a dedicated 24-hour NRL channel showing all matches live.

Does forcing fans to pay for the privilege of watching all events live detract from the money they would otherwise spend on attending those same events?

V8X Supercar Magazine decided to ask our readers for their thoughts on the crowd and ratings dilemma, why they aren't attending events and the state of Supercars in 2017.

CLICK HERE to purchase issue #98 to read the feature.

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Event Date
Adelaide 500 1-4 March
2018 Formula 1 Australian Grand Prix 22-25 March
Tyrepower Tasmania SuperSprint 6-8 April
WD-40 Phillip Island 500 20-22 April
Perth SuperSprint 4-6 May
Winton SuperSprint 18-20 May
CrownBet Darwin Triple Crown 15-17 June
Watpac Townsville 400 6-8 July
Coates Hire Ipswich SuperSprint 20-22 July
Red Rooster Sydney SuperSprint 4 August
The Bend SuperSprint 24-26 August
Sandown 500 14-16 September
Supercheap Auto Bathurst 1000 4-7 October
Vodafone Gold Coast 600 19-21 October
ITM Auckland SuperSprint 2-4 November
Coates Hire Newcastle 500 23-25 November

 

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Pos

 Driver

 Points

 1

 Shane van Gisbergen

3054

 2

 Scott McLaughlin

2999

 3

 Jamie Whincup 

2716

 4

 Craig Lowndes

2487

 5

 David Reynolds

2435

 6

 Fabian Coulthard

2114

 7

 Rick Kelly

2098

 8

 Chaz Mostert

2048

 9

 Scott Pye

1906

 10

 Tim Slade

1862

 Full points table