28.3 MILLION TUNE-IN FOR 116TH U.S. OPEN CHAMPIONSHIP PRESENTED BY FOX SPORTS
Final Round Peaks at 9.6 Million Viewers on FOX, Delivers +13% Increase Over Most Recent East Coast U.S. Open in 2014
Oakmont, Pa. - To the joy of the gallery on-hand Sunday at historic Oakmont Country Club and to the millions of viewers tuned in across the country, Dustin Johnson made a short birdie putt to clinch his first career major at the 72nd hole of the 116th U.S. Open Championship. Presenting its second U.S. Open, FOX Sports welcomed a total of 28.3 million viewers for all or part of the four-day event, with more than 47 live hours of coverage between FOX and FS1, according to Nielsen.
Johnson's memorable final round, one that included the specter of a rules-violation penalty at its conclusion, delivered FOX Sports a 3.4 household rating and an average of 5.4 million viewers over the course of Sunday's nine-plus hours of coverage.
Final Round Highlights:
- In comparison to the most recent U.S. Open final round played on the East Coast, Sunday's rating marked a +13% increase over the final round of the 2014 U.S. Open (3.4 vs. 3.0). The average audience of 5.4 million viewers throughout the day also outpaced 2014, showing a +17% gain (4.6 million).
- With the rest of the field on his heels, the controversy over whether or not Johnson would be penalized a critical stroke following the round for inadvertently moving his ball on the fifth green led to a steady climb in viewership into the evening. Coverage peaked at 9.6 million viewers between 7:30-8:00 PM ET as Johnson secured the victory by converting his birdie putt on 18 just after the top of the hour.
- Top six markets for Sunday's final-round coverage: Pittsburgh (7.8), Minneapolis (6.4), Greensboro (5.7), Jacksonville (5.6), Tampa (5.4) and West Palm Beach (5.4).
After three separate rain delays washed out Thursday's opening round, FOX Sports offered expanded broadcast windows over the ensuing three days, ultimately producing more than 47 live hours during the championship. The extended coverage led to an increased total audience reach, represented by gross ratings points (GRP).
Four Round and Weekend Highlights:
- Across four rounds on FOX and FS1, the 2016 U.S. Open reached 28.3 million viewers, including an estimated 16.2% of American households watching a portion of FOX Sports' coverage.
- Combined Saturday and Sunday weekend coverage on FOX averaged a 2.8/8 rating and share, with 4.4 million viewers, an +8% gain over the 2014 average of 2.6/7 (3.9 million viewers).
- FOX Sports' weekend coverage earned 51.3 gross ratings points, a +27% increase over the 40.5 GRP accumulated during the third and final rounds coverage in 2014.
- On FOX Sports GO, 1.1 million total live streams were started, up +99% from 2015. In addition, 30 million minutes were streamed across cable and broadcast simulcasts as well as bonus feeds, an + 86% increase over last year's totals.
- The simulcast of the final round was streamed for 7.2 million minutes with 350,000 stream starts, a +159% and +188 increase, respectively, from 2015.