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Daytona 500 Roars Into Households Across America

All eyes may be on the city of Daytona this weekend for the Super Bowl of NASCAR, but we wanted to know which American cities are the biggest NASCAR fans. (Spoiler Alert: It’s not Daytona!) But what defines a “fan?” Experian Simmons examined a number of factors that determine fan-dom, including one’s self-reported interest in NASCAR, watching NASCAR races on television, visiting NASCAR.com and even buying NASCAR licensed apparel.

Let’s start with interest. Looking at the percent of area residents who proclaim that they are either “very interested” or “somewhat interested” in NASCAR, we found that the Paducah, Kentucky Designated Market Area (DMA®)—an area that also includes Cape Girardeau, Missouri and Harrisburg and Mt. Vernon, IL—has the highest concentration of NASCAR fans with 24.3% of the area’s estimated 762,617 adults professing their love of NASCAR. By comparison, only 15.1% of all U.S. adults are interested in NASCAR, which means Paducah-area residents are fully 61% more likely than the average American to have NASCAR on the brain.

Interested in NASCAR
# Designated Market Area (DMA®) % Index
1 Paducah, KY-Cape Girardeau, MO-Harrisburg-Mt Vernon, IL
24.3%
161
2 Evansville, IN
23.4%
155
3 Sherman, TX-Ada, OK
23.4%
155
4 Parkersburg, WV
23.3%
154
5 Topeka, KS
23.2%
154
6 Joplin, MO-Pittsburg, KS
23.0%
152
7 Des Moines-Ames, IA
22.9%
151
8 Quincy, IL-Hannibal, MO-Keokuk, IA
22.9%
151
9 Clarksburg-Weston, WV
22.9%
151
10 Bluefield-Beckley-Oak Hill, WV
22.8%
151

An estimated 16.2% of all U.S. adults report watching NASCAR events on TV. But when its race day in Paducah, you can expect nearly a quarter (23.7%) of area residents to be tuning in on television making the market the top place to find NASCAR-watching fans.

Watch NASCAR Events on TV
# Designated Market Area (DMA®) % Index
1 Paducah, KY-Cape Girardeau, MO-Harrisburg-Mt Vernon, IL 23.7% 147
2 Clarksburg-Weston, WV 23.4% 144
3 Columbia-Jefferson City, MO 23.1% 142
4 Evansville, IN 23.1% 142
5 Terre Haute, IN 23.0% 142
6 Parkersburg, WV 22.9% 142
7 Huntsville-Decatur-Florence, AL 22.9% 141
8 Wheeling, WV-Steubenville, OH 22.9% 141
9 Bluefield-Beckley-Oak Hill, WV 22.8% 141
10 Des Moines-Ames, IA 22.8% 141

Fans can get their NASCAR fix 365 days a year on NASCAR.com. Residents of Topeka, Kansas are 70% more likely than the average U.S. adult to have visited the racing organization’s official website. In fact, 5.9% of the Topeka area’s estimated 346,881 adults make an online pit stop at NASCAR.com during a typical 30 day period.

Visited NASCAR.com in the Last 30 Days
# Designated Market Area (DMA®) % Index
1 Topeka, KS 5.9% 170
2 Terre Haute, IN 5.7% 162
3 Columbia-Jefferson City, MO 5.5% 156
4 Wichita-Hutchinson, KS 5.4% 156
5 Oklahoma City, OK 5.4% 155
6 Missoula, MT 5.4% 153
7 Sherman, TX-Ada, OK 5.3% 152
8 Parkersburg, WV 5.3% 150
9 Spokane, WA 5.2% 149
10 Butte-Bozeman, MT 5.2% 148

Residents of the Wheeling, West Virginia-Steubenville, Ohio market are the most likely to wear their NASCAR love on their sleeve, literally. We find that 3.9% of the area’s 253,651 adults have purchased NASCAR licensed apparel in the last year. By comparison, only 1.4% of all U.S. adults bought NASCAR-licensed apparel, which means Wheeling-area residents are fully 2.8 times more likely than the average American to don the NASCAR logo.

Wear NASCAR-Licensed Apparel
# Designated Market Area (DMA®) % Index
1 Wheeling, WV-Steubenville, OH 3.9% 282
2 Clarksburg-Weston, WV 3.7% 266
3 Bluefield-Beckley-Oak Hill, WV 3.4% 245
4 South Bend-Elkhart, IN 3.2% 231
5 Ft. Wayne, IN 3.1% 224
6 Johnstown-Altoona, PA 3.1% 224
7 Huntsville-Decatur-Florence, AL 3.0% 218
8 Youngstown, OH 3.0% 213
9 Charleston-Huntington, WV 3.0% 212
10 Terre Haute, IN 2.9% 211

For more information on local market estimates from Experian Simmons, visit our website.