The race that really stopped the nation (but was that a Melbourne suburban train I saw racing alongside Flemington on as the Cup field trudged up the back straight? Yep, so not quite all of Australia stopped). But for the romance, drama and sheer joy of the win yesterday by Michelle Payne and Prince of Penzance, it was very, very hard to beat. A total of 2.931 million people watched it on TV and a further 342,000 live streamed the race concurrently via Seven’s new streaming service for the first time, so it was a historic Cup in more ways than one. The pre-race stuff had more than 1.8 million national viewers and the emotional and inspiring presentation (at least the speech by Michelle Payne and not the efforts by the Emirates man or the Governor-General, who both missed the real significance of the result) averaged nearly 2.5 million viewers (a high figure on its own and no doubt due to the history making win).

Seven won metros and regional markets (the latter very easily). More than 2.068 million people watched the Cup on Seven in the metros (and more at work, pubs, clubs bars etc) and a further 863,000 in the regions (and hundreds of thousands more in social events everywhere). 800 Words finished its season with the tile of most watched non-Cup program with more than 1.8 million national and over 1.1 million metro viewers. The X Factor lived the dream and averaged 1.649 million viewers across the country. the halo of the race and its historic race lasted well into prime time for Seven last night — a perfect example of why TV networks value live support — especially those iconic national events.

Nine’s The Block had a solid night with nearly 1.4 million viewers. Momentum was maintained last night.

In the morning Sunrise with 350,000 viewers moved back in front of Today on 310,000. This is getting spooky, and Halloween has gone for another year. But tomorrow night is Guy Fawkes Night.

Network channel share:

  1. Seven (34.1%)
  2. Nine (28.3%)
  3. Ten (17.7%)
  4. ABC (15.0%)
  5. SBS (4.9%)

Network main channels:

  1. Seven (24.9%)
  2. Nine (21.5%)
  3. Ten (11.5%)
  4. ABC (10.5%)
  5. SBS ONE (3.8%)

Top 5 digital channels: 

  1. 7TWO (5.4%)
  2. 7mate (3.8%)
  3. Gem (3.6%)
  4. GO (3.2%)
  5. ONE (3.1%)

Top 10 national programs:

  1. The Melbourne Cup – Race  (Seven) — 2.931 million
  2. The Melbourne CupPresentation (Seven) — 2.495 million
  3. The Melbourne Cup – Pre-Race  (Seven) — 1.839 million
  4. 800 Words (Seven) — 1.809 million
  5. The X Factor (Seven) — 1.649 million
  6. Seven News — 1.529 million
  7. Nine News — 1.408 million
  8. The Block (Nine) — 1.392 million
  9. Home and Away (Seven) — 1.350 million
  10. ABC News — 1.227 million

Top metro programs:

  1. The Melbourne Cup – Race  (Seven) — 2.068 million
  2. The Melbourne Cup – Presentation (Seven) — 1.788 million
  3. The Melbourne Cup – Pre-Race  (Seven) — 1.700 million
  4. Seven News — 1.245 million
  5. Seven News/Today Tonight — 1.171 million
  6. 800 Words (Seven) — 1.151 million
  7. The X Factor (Seven) — 1.102 million
  8. The Block (Nine) — 1.033 million
  9. Nine News 6.30 — 1.002 million

Losers: Anyone who missed the running of the Melbourne Cup. You didn’t have to like racing to appreciate the historic result.Metro news and current affairs:

  1. Seven News — 1.245 million
  2. Seven News/ Today Tonight — 1.171 million
  3. Nine News (6.30pm) — 1.002 million
  4. Nine News — 993,000
  5. A Current Affair (Nine) – 923,000
  6. ABC News – 859,000
  7. 7.30 (ABC) — 763,000
  8. The Project 7pm (Ten) — 592,000
  9. Ten Eyewitness News — 548,000
  10. The Project 6.30pm (Ten) — 408,000

Morning TV:

  1. Sunrise (Seven) – 350,000
  2. Today (Nine) – 310,000
  3. The Morning Show (Seven) — PRE-EMPTED BY THE CUP
  4. Mornings (Nine) — 145,000
  5. News Breakfast (ABC 1,  82,000 + 53,000 on News 24) — 135,000
  6. Studio 10 (Ten) — 66,000

Top five pay TV channels:

  1. Fox 8  (2.5%)
  2. LifeStyle  (2.3%)
  3. TVHITS  (1.9%)
  4. Disney Jr, UKTV, Nick Jr  (1.5%)

Top five pay TV programs:

  1. The Great Australian Bake-Off (LifeStyle) – 81,000
  2. The Simpsons (Fox8) – 75,000
  3. The Simpsons (Fox8) – 59,000
  4. Mrs Brown’s Boys (UKTV) — 57,000
  5. Back Page (Fox Sports 1) — 55,000

*Data © OzTAM Pty Limited 2015. The data may not be reproduced, published or communicated (electronically or in hard copy) in whole or in part, without the prior written consent of OzTAM. (All shares on the basis of combined overnight 6pm to midnight all people.) and network reports.

Peter Fray

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