Hey, NBC: TV Viewers Prefer Skiing to Skating

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Thanks to its quads, salchows, and sequined spandex, figure skating has long ruled the Winter Olympics. But recent ratings show that its glittery reign over primetime is crashing down--like so many male skaters in the short program last week.

Skiing is the new successor to the throne.

Both alpine and freestyle skiing have commanded enormous television audiences during the Vancouver Games. During the first week, the moguls events attracted an average of 26.9 million viewers according to Nielson ratings. Downhill skiing and snowboarding garnered 26.7 million and 25.5 million viewers respectively, trumping figure skating and speed skating with 25.4 million and 22.6 million viewers each.

Last week, snowboarder Shaun White dominated the Nielson ratings when 29.4 million tuned in to watch his gold medal run.

Bye bye, double axel. Hello, double McTwist 1260. It���s a brave new world.

Photo courtesy of Flickr/kennymatic