Chris Evans brings home the bacon in breakfast show battle

Chris Evans has cooked up a hearty lead over his breakfast show rival Nick Grimshaw at Radio 1, bringing home the bacon with 9.7m Radio 2 listeners whilst his younger upstart was left nursing cold porridge after slumping to a fresh audience low of 5.4m listeners.

The widening gulf marks growing interest in Evans ahead of the presenters Top Gear debut while channel neighbour Grimshaw struggles to gain traction after hitting a previous record low of 5.5m in the first quarter of 2015.

This means he is now lagging behind his predecessor Sara Cox, who managed to pull in 5.5m listeners during her final months in the job back in 2003.

The audience figures were revealed in the latest batch of Rajar figures which showed the average weekly reach for Radio 1 as a whole bouncing 2.1 per cent to 9.9m off a record low reached last year.

Radio 2 remains by far the nations’ most listened to radio station with an audience of 15.5m, up 2.8 per cent on last year.

Elsewhere Global Radio-owned Radio X saw his audience base collapse by close to half from 300k to 170k although overall the network had 1.2m listeners, up 40 per cent on the same time last year.

BBC Radio 6 Music meanwhile recorded an even more impressive 8.3 per cent year on year increase to 2.2m listeners whilst Radio 3 grew 1.6 per cent to reach 2.1m people. Classic FM on the other hand crashed by 7 per cent to 5.1m over the people and Radio 4 slipped 2.9 per cent to 10.6m.

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