For racing fans who poured their windfall from last year's Monarchos-Invisible Ink exacta into a high-definition television, your investment will continue paying off this year.

NBC and HDNET will broadcast the first-ever live high definition coverage of the Visa Triple Crown, beginning with the Kentucky Derby (gr. I) on Saturday.
The HDTV broadcasts will be available on NBC's DTV affiliate stations and on HDNet's channel 199 on DIRECTV. High definition television uses a larger format and greater compression of lines on the screen to provide a remarkably sharp picture.

"NBC's high definition broadcasts of the Triple Crown races will deliver three of the sports world's premier events to NBC affiliate stations' digital television homes using the world's premier television technology," said Ken Schanzer, president of NBC Sports. "We are pleased to be able to once again tap into HDNet's experience in covering sporting events in high definition."

HDNet covered the recent Winter Olympics at Salt Lake City and several NBA games carried on NBC.

"The Triple Crown, an event steeped in tradition, is another great addition to the wealth of quality programming available to HDTV viewers," said Mark Cuban, co-founder and president of HDNet.

Each of the Triple Crown races will be broadcast from 5-6:30 p.m. The Preakness (gr. I) runs on May 18 and the Belmont Stakes (gr. I) on June 8.

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