translated by Brett Larner
On Jan. 5, NTV, broadcasters of the 91st Hakone Ekiden where Aoyama Gakuin University scored its first-ever win in course record time, released viewership rating data from Video Research Ltd. for its two-day live broadcast. Day One of the race on Jan. 2 averaged 28.2% nationwide viewership, while Day Two on Jan. 3 averaged 28.3%. The two-day average of 28.3% was the fourth-highest in the 29 years since NTV began broadcasting the Hakone Ekiden in 1987. Both days' ratings were significantly higher than last year, when the Jan. 2 part of the broadcast averaged 26.8% and Jan. 3 averaged 27.0%.
The Day One peak ratings of 33.9% came at 9:03 a.m. during the handoff to the Second Stage runners at the Tsurumi Exchange Zone. Day Two's peak ratings of 33.6% came at 1:26 p.m. when Aoyama Gakuin's runners threw head coach Susumu Hara into the air in celebration of the school's first win since the Hakone Ekiden began 96 years ago.