Beijing golden for CBC

Prime-time coverage of the Olympic Games beat out Athens average viewership. Most-watched event? Simon Whitfield's triathlon silver win.

CBC’s coverage of the Beijing Olympic Games ended on a high note for the broadcaster, which now moves aside as the CTV-Rogers Olympic consortium takes over for the 2010 and 2012 Winter and Summer spectacles.

CBC bested the average prime-time viewership of the 2004 Athens Games, scoring nearly 1.3 million viewers from Aug 8-24, compared to 1.1 million. The pubcaster rendered over 2,400 hours of total coverage for China’s first Olympic Games (all numbers 2+).

Beijing was good to NBC as well, with the US caster wrapping up its coverage with an average audience of 27 million viewers, an 8% increase from Athens, according to Nielsen.

Over 1.4 million viewers tuned in for the Ceeb’s taped rebroadcast of the closing ceremony on Sunday night, while the earlier live presentation nabbed a combined 933,000 viewers on CBC and CBC Newsworld.

Simon Whitfield attracted the most eyeballs for his nail-biter triathlon event on Aug 18, in which the Victoria native crossed the finish line just seconds after German athlete Jan Frodeno, to capture a silver medal. The event peaked at 2.5 million viewers.

CBC received an all-around thumbs-up for its coverage, with the Globe and Mail calling it ‘effective and compelling,’ while Sun Media praised the commentary of the athletes and noted that CBC hosts ‘were on the mark.’

From Playback Daily