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Rory McIlroy’s Prime-Time PGA Win Drives Ratings Up 36%

August 11, 2014

Rory McIlroy

Rory McIlroy speaks with the media alongside the Wanamaker trophy after his victory during the final round of the PGA Championship at Valhalla Golf Club in Louisville, Kentucky, on Aug. 10. Photographer: Sam Greenwood/Getty Images

Rory McIlroy’s one-stroke win over Phil Mickelson at the PGA Championship earned a 36 percent higher television rating on CBS from a year earlier as the tournament concluded in near darkness following a weather delay.

With a leaderboard yesterday at Valhalla Golf Club in Louisville, Kentucky, that also included Rickie Fowler and Henrik Stenson, McIlroy’s fourth major victory was seen in an average of 6 percent of homes in the top 56 U.S. television markets, the CBS Corp. (CBS:US) network said in a statement. The tournament drew a 4.4 major-market rating last year when Jason Dufner won the event.

With McIlroy, a 25-year-old from Northern Ireland, increasingly growing into a household name, ratings rose 54 percent from when he won his first PGA Championship in 2012. The last time the golf season’s final major championship drew a higher rating was in 2009, when it had a 7.5 major-market rating as Y.E. Yang outlasted Tiger Woods. Woods, the 14-time major champion who hasn’t won one since the 2008 U.S. Open, missed the midway cut at Valhalla while fighting an injury to his surgically repaired back.

Yesterday’s round, which included a 1 hour, 51 minute rain delay, peaked with a 9.2 rating from 8 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. The tournament ended at 8:43 p.m. as McIlroy parred the 18th hole.

To contact the reporter on this story: Mason Levinson in New York at

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Michael Sillup at Jay Beberman

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