2012 Kentucky Derby TV schedule

The 138th Kentucky Derby takes place Saturday, May 5, from Churchill Downs in Louisville, for the first leg of horse racing’s elusive Triple Crown (sweeping the Kentucky Derby, Preakness Stakes and Belmont Stakes). Bodemeister, Creative Cause, Hansen, Take Charge Indy, Union Rags, Gemologist and Dullahan are among the top horses in the starting gate. Long shot Animal Kingdom (pictured) won last year’s Run for the Roses.

NBC has coverage of the Derby beginning at 4pm ET on Saturday, but since this is one of those “Big Event” things that NBCUniversal thinks appeals to more than just horse-racing fans, you’ll get plenty of ancillary stuff this week across all the NBCU cable networks.

Below are a pair of press releases from the NBC Sports group with the 2012 Kentucky Derby TV schedule and all the complementary programming:

TODAY Show Segments Live from Churchill Downs Friday, Saturday and Sunday

NEW YORK – May 2, 2012 – The NBC Sports Group will present 14½ hours of Kentucky Derby coverage beginning today at 4 p.m. ET on NBC Sports Network, and culminating with the 138th running of the Kentucky Derby on NBC, Saturday, May 5 beginning at 4 p.m. ET.

Once again this year, a host of NBCUniversal properties will participate in promoting the food, fashion, celebrity and entertaining spectacle that is the Kentucky Derby.

Below is a summary of the NBCU properties that are supporting the Kentucky Derby:

TODAY SHOW: TODAY’s Jenna Wolfe will report live from Churchill Downs on Friday for TODAY, and continue Kentucky Derby coverage on Saturday’s Weekend TODAY when she interviews NBC’s on-horse reporter Donna Brothers (they will both be on horses for the interview). TODAY coverage from Churchill Downs continues on Sunday with an interview with the Derby-winning jockey and trainer. Wolfe will also be featured on NBC’s Kentucky Derby coverage, where she will contribute features.

TODAY WITH HODA AND KATHIE LEE: For the third year in a row, TODAY’s Kathie Lee Gifford and Hoda Kotb hosted a Kentucky Derby trip giveaway contest for the fan who created the most interesting Derby hat.

SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE: Bob Costas, NBC’s Kentucky Derby host, will conduct a live interview with Super Bowl MVP and this week’s Saturday Night Live host Eli Manning during Saturday’s coverage of the Derby. Manning will be live from Studio 8H in Rockefeller Center during his afternoon SNL rehearsal.

CNBC: CNBC’s sports-business reporter, Darren Rovell, will file reports live from Churchill Downs all day Friday. Rovell will also be a part of NBC Sports Network’s Kentucky Derby coverage.

Bravo: Cat Cora, co-host of Bravo’s new show, Around the World in 80 Plates, will be a participating chef in “Taste of the Derby,” and will appear on NBC Sports Network’s Kentucky Oaks coverage on Friday.

E!: E! News host Catt Sadler will interview celebrity guests at the Kentucky Derby for NBC’s coverage Friday and Saturday. Additionally, E! News is featuring Derby segments all week, including a hat-shopping segment with Catt and interviews with National Anthem performer Mary J. Blige and other celebrities in attendance.

Style: Jeannie Mai, host of How Do I Look, will be on-site at Churchill Downs breaking down the day’s fashion and Kentucky Derby style trends. This is the first time that NBC has included a fashion correspondent in on-air coverage of the Derby.

iVillage: iVillage, the essential digital brand for women which reaches over 30 million unique visitors per month, will celebrate this year’s Kentucky Derby by featuring a contest to win a new wardrobe and accessories from Vineyard Vines’ new Kentucky Derby collection.

DailyCandy: DailyCandy.com will feature Kentucky Derby editorial content on its homepage through a special editorial package titled “Derby Day 101.” The package will include over 40 articles about Derby parties, recipes, fashion, and everything a DailyCandy reader needs to know to get ready for the Kentucky Derby. In addition, DailyCandy’s Lilliana Vazquez will be a guest on TODAY with KLG and Hoda for a Kentucky Derby “Who Knew” segment.

Local Media & Comcast regional sports nets: NBC Kentucky Derby feature teasers were distributed to all 235 NBC affiliates and 11 Comcast Regional Sports Networks. Additionally, DailyCandy’s Lilliana Vazquez participated in a Satellite Media Tour about Kentucky Derby fashions and traditions, and a reporter from NBC NewsChannel will file live reports from Churchill Downs on Friday.

WEATHER CHANNEL: Throughout Kentucky Derby Week on NBCU, Weather Channel’s Wake Up with Al has been featuring the Louisville, Ky., forecast, and what weather viewers and attendees can expect at Churchill Downs throughout Derby weekend.

NBC SPORTS’ ‘BIG EVENT STRATEGY’ HELPS TO INCREASE VIEWERSHIP

The shared vision of Churchill Downs and NBC Sports’ successful ‘Big Event Strategy’ to assemble the broadest possible audience led to the 2011 Kentucky Derby drawing 14.54 million viewers, the fourth most-watched Kentucky Derby in 21 years. Since implementing this strategy, the last three Kentucky Derby races have recorded at least 14.5 million viewers including the 2010 Derby, which was the most-watched for the event in 22 years.

NBC Sports coverage of the Kentucky Derby over the last 11 years averages more than 2½ million more viewers than the previous 11 Kentucky Derby broadcasts on ABC (14.1 million vs.11.5 million, up 23 percent).

NBC SPORTS GROUP KENTUCKY DERBY COVERAGE (All Times ET):

Wed. May 2
4 p.m. – 5 p.m.
Derby Classics – Barbaro
NBC Sports Network

5 p.m. – 6 p.m.
Kentucky Derby Draw
NBC Sports Network

Thur. May 3
4 p.m. – 5 p.m.
Derby Classics – Mine that Bird
NBC Sports Network

5 p.m. – 6 p.m.
Live from Churchill Downs
NBC Sports Network

Fri. May 4
4 p.m. – 5 p.m.
Derby Classics – Animal Kingdom
NBC Sports Network

5 p.m. – 6 p.m.
Kentucky Oaks
NBC Sports Network

Sat. May 5
11 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Kentucky Derby Saturday
NBC Sports Network

4 p.m. – 7 p.m.
Kentucky Derby 138
NBC

7 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.
Kentucky Derby Post-Race Show
NBC Sports Network

NBC SPORTS GROUP PRESENTS 14½ HOURS OF KENTUCKY DERBY COVERAGE

Coverage From Churchill Downs Begins Wednesday and Continues All Week on NBC and NBC Sports Network

Bob Costas and Tom Hammond Host Kentucky Derby Coverage

Kentucky Derby Extra Provides Live Streaming on NBCSports.com with Additional Camera Angles and Live Commentary

Gary Stevens and Randy Moss Both Like Union Rags

NBC Sports Group Presents 27½ Total Hours of Horse Racing’s Triple Crown Over Next 5 Weeks

NEW YORK – April 30, 2012 – The NBC Sports Group will present 14½ hours of Kentucky Derby coverage beginning on Wednesday, May 2 at 4 p.m. ET on NBC Sports Network and culminating with the 138th running of the Kentucky Derby on NBC, Saturday, May 5 beginning at 4 p.m. ET.

The expanded Kentucky Derby coverage, which includes 8.5 hours on Derby Day on NBC and NBC Sports Network, will include:
Live coverage of the Kentucky Derby Draw on NBC Sports Network, which will determine the post positions;
11½ total hours on NBC Sports Network, which was re-branded from VERSUS earlier this year;
Three hours of “Derby Classics” (Barbaro, Mine That Bird, Animal Kingdom) to air on NBC Sports Network.

COMMENTATORS: The NBC Sports Group coverage of the Kentucky Derby will feature co-hosts Bob Costas, a 22-time Emmy Award-winner, and veteran NBC Sports commentator Tom Hammond; three-time Kentucky Derby winner Gary Stevens; contributing analysts/handicappers Mike Battaglia and Bob Neumeier; analyst Randy Moss; host Laffit Pincay, III; reporters Kenny Rice, Donna Brothers and Jay Privman; race caller Larry Collmus. Also, TODAY’s Jenna Wolfe will contribute features and Catt Sadler of NBCUniversal’s E! will talk Kentucky Derby fashions and handle celebrity interviews.

Additionally, Hall-of Fame jockey and two-time Kentucky Derby-winner Jerry Baileywill join NBC Sports Network’s commentary team on Derby Day. Bailey, who also won twice in the Preakness and twice in the Belmont, won the Kentucky Derby in 1993 (Sea Hero) and 1996 (Grindstone).

The coverage on NBC will be produced by Rob Hyland, a veteran of the network’s horse racing coverage since 2001, and directed by Sunday Night Football and NBC Sports’ horse racing director, Drew Esocoff. The coverage on NBC Sports Network is produced by Billy Matthews and Rich O’Connor and directed by Patrick McManus. The executive producer of NBC Sports and NBC Sports Network is Sam Flood, who has produced 11 Triple Crown races for the network.

STEVENS’ DERBY TOP 5:
1. Union Rags
2. I’ll Have Another
3. Creative Cause
4. Bodemeister
5. Gemologist
MOSS’ DERBY TOP 5:
1. Union Rags
2. Creative Cause
3. Gemologist
4. Hansen
5. Bodemeister

27½ HOURS OF TRIPLE CROWN COVERAGE: The NBC Sports Group will present 27½ hours of Triple Crown coverage this season from Churchill Downs, Pimlico and Belmont, including “classics” from the Preakness and Belmont, live racing from all three tracks prior to the three Triple Crown races, and post-race coverage of the Kentucky Derby, Preakness and Belmont on NBC Sports Network. This marks the second straight year that all three Triple Crown races will air on NBC.

NBC SPORTS GROUP TRIPLE CROWN COVERAGE (All Times ET):

KENTUCKY DERBY
Wed. May 2    4 p.m. – 5 p.m.    Derby Classics – Barbaro    NBC Sports Network
5 p.m. – 6 p.m.    Kentucky Derby Draw    NBC Sports Network
Thur. May 3    4 p.m. – 5 p.m.    Derby Classics – Mine that Bird    NBC Sports Network
5 p.m. – 6 p.m.    Live from Churchill Downs    NBC Sports Network
Fri. May 4    4 p.m. – 5 p.m.    Derby Classics – Animal Kingdom    NBC Sports Network
5 p.m. – 6 p.m.    Kentucky Oaks    NBC Sports Network
Sat. May 5    11 a.m. – 4 p.m.    Kentucky Derby Saturday    NBC Sports Network
4 p.m. – 7 p.m.    Kentucky Derby 138    NBC
7 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.    Kentucky Derby Post-Race Show    NBC Sports Network
PREAKNESS STAKES
Fri. May 18    3 p.m. – 4 p.m.    Preakness Classics    NBC Sports Network
4 p.m. – 5 p.m.    Black Eyed Susan Stakes    NBC Sports Network
Sat. May 19    2:30 p.m. – 4:30 p.m.    Preakness Stakes Saturday    NBC Sports Network
4:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m.    Preakness Stakes    NBC
6:30 p.m. – 7 p.m.    Preakness Post-Race Show    NBC Sports Network
BELMONT STAKES
Fri. June 8    4 p.m. – 5 p.m.    Belmont Classics    NBC Sports Network
5 p.m. – 6 p.m.    Live from Belmont    NBC Sports Network
Sat. June 9    3 p.m. – 5 p.m.    Belmont Stakes Saturday    NBC Sports Network
5 p.m. – 7 p.m.    Belmont Stakes    NBC
7 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.    Belmont Post-Race Show    NBC Sports Network

KENTUCKY DERBY EXTRA
Taking a page from Sunday Night Football Extra and Super Bowl Extra, Kentucky Derby Extra is the online connection to coverage of the Kentucky Derby. Available at NBCSports.com with live streaming of the NBC broadcast of the Kentucky Derby, other features of Kentucky Derby Extra include:
Four online-only camera angles that showcase the activity happening across Churchill Downs on Derby day;
Online-only analysis by NBC and NBC Sports Network commentators;
Hall of Fame jockey Jerry Bailey will answer fans’ questions and offer analysis throughout the broadcast;
Replays and footage from all the key Road to the Kentucky Derby prep races;
A video simulation of how this year’s Kentucky Derby might play out.

SOCIAL MEDIA AT THE KENTUCKY DERBY
DERBY ALL-ACCESS: NBC Sports will implement its All-Access social media strategy for Kentucky Derby week on both NBC Sports and NBC Sports Network. A dedicated social media producer will be on-site for behind the scenes content including Breaking News, photos and video from Churchill Downs.
Twitter: Viewers and tweeters alike will be encouraged to join the conversation by using the hashtag #DERBYonNBC. Reminders will appear on screen throughout all of NBC’s Kentucky Derby week coverage.
On-air integration of live tweets from celebrities, horse-racing experts and @NBCSN will be featured on screen throughout the broadcasts to keep viewers up to date with what’s happening and trending on Twitter;
For the ultimate horse racing fan, @NBCSN will live tweet the Kentucky Derby Draw Show on Wednesday and provide interactive trivia and “Did You Know” tweets during the Derby Classics shows Wednesday through Friday.
Facebook: Fans will have the chance to join the Derby party at Churchill Downs, by submitting their photos of their Derby parties and Derby hats no matter where they are, to the NBC Sports Facebook page where a selection of the fan images will be shown on-air. (Submit photos at www.facebook.com/NBCSports)
Everyone at home can pick their winner with the “Choose the Winning Horse” Facebook poll on www.facebook.com/NBCSports. The nation’s votes will be tallied and shown on-air during the Kentucky Derby broadcast.
NBC SPORTS GROUP AND HORSE RACING: The NBC Sports Group is the exclusive home to the most important and prestigious events in horse racing, including the Triple Crown and the Breeders’ Cup, which was broadcast on NBC from 1984-2005. Last year marked the first time that all three Triple Crown races appeared on one network since NBC last aired the Triple Crown in 2005. NBC has been the exclusive home of the Kentucky Derby and the Preakness Stakes since 2001. This year, the NBC Sports Group will present 27½ hours of Triple Crown coverage across NBC and NBC Sports Network.
NBC Sports Group is also the home to Summer at Saratoga, Autumn at Keeneland, and, in collaboration with The Jockey Club, the Road to the Kentucky Derby series that provided live coverage of six major prep races for the 2012 Kentucky Derby.
KENTUCKY DERBY: Last year the Kentucky Derby drew 14.54 million viewers; the fourth most-watched Kentucky Derby in 21 years. Since implementing NBC’s Big Event Strategy, the last three Kentucky Derby races have recorded at least 14.5 million viewers including the 2010 Derby, which was the most-watched for the event in 22 years.
NBC’s coverage of the Kentucky Derby over the last 11 years averages more than 2½ million more viewers than the previous 11 Kentucky Derby broadcasts on ABC (14.1 million vs.11.5 million, up 23 percent).
PREAKNESS STAKES: Last year’s coverage of the Preakness Stakes on NBC drew 8.8 million viewers, a gain of five percent over 2010 and the second most-watched Preakness in five years.
Since NBC began broadcasting the Preakness in 2001, every Preakness telecast on NBC over that period attracted more viewers than any Preakness telecast on ABC in the previous seven years. Viewership for the Preakness is up an average of 63% in the 11 years on NBC compared to the previous eight years on ABC.
BELMONT STAKES: Last year, NBC’s first broadcast of the Belmont Stakes since 2005 drew 6.8 million viewers, making it the most-watched Belmont in a non-Triple Crown year since NBC last broadcast the Belmont in 2005.
Since its involvement in the Triple Crown, NBC Sports has been honored with 11 Eclipse Awards for its thoroughbred racing coverage, Preakness (2002-03-05-06-08), Kentucky Derby (2007), Belmont (2004) and Breeder’s Cup (2001). Additionally, NBC Sports has won three Eclipse Awards in the features category: 2002 on War Emblem (Preakness broadcast), 2005 Afleet Alex (Kentucky Derby broadcast) and 2009 Mine That Bird (Preakness broadcast), and the 2005 and 2006 Preakness broadcasts were nominated for the Sports Emmy Award for Outstanding Live Sports Special.

About Ryan Berenz 2012 Articles
Devotee of Star Wars. Builder of LEGO. Observer of televised sports. Member of the Television Critics Association. Graduate of the University of Wisconsin. Connoisseur of beer. Consumer of cheese. Father of two. Husband of one. Scourge of the Alaskan Bush People. Font of Simpsons knowledge. Son of a Stonecutter.