The American Le Mans Series reports that last weekend's 14th annual Petit Le Mans powered by Mazda set new records for attendance. Indeed it also drew more spectators to Road Atlanta than any other weekend of the Braselton, Ga., track's 41-year history. Beginning with the camper and motor coach crowd that arrived for opening day on Wednesday, Sept. 28, the four-day attendance figure amounted to 131,400 spectators, according to the promoter.
This year, having moved to the ABC/ESPN network from its former position on the SPEED cable network the event enjoyed the largest U.S. television audience in its history, according to the ALMS, which says that nearly 900,000 viewers tuned in to watch the race. That represents an increase of 185 percent over viewership in 2010, making it by far the event's largest domestic TV audience ever.
“The Road Atlanta and ALMS staffs did a tremendous job in promoting this crown jewel event and – just as importantly – positively managing fans' and corporate partner experiences while attending the event,” American Le Mans Series president and CEO Scott Atherton said.
“Due to the devotion of a growing fan base, the American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patrón showed great momentum throughout our 13th season. We have an ever-improving multi-year TV platform with ABC/ESPN that's delivering substantial improvements in ROI for our partners. We're entering our 14th year with a favorable, new, long-term agreement with our partners at the ACO, which organizes the 24 Hours of Le Mans and the new FIA World Endurance Championship. As evidenced by the success of Petit Le Mans with its record field of the greatest sports car teams in the world, we're more than pleased with the positive trend line for our form of motorsport, and we look forward to the 2012 season with nothing but optimism.”