ESPN's coverage of the Oct. 27 Breeders' Cup drew roughly the same number of viewers as last year, and that is not very good news.
The ESPN family of networks will set a record for length of Breeders' Cup coverage, with 9 1/2 hours devoted to the two-day Breeders' Cup event and a preview show Wednesday.
HorseRacing TV will present live coverage of the public memorial for the great John Henry from the Kentucky Horse Park in Lexington Oct. 19, beginning at 2 p.m. (EST), the network announced Oct. 18.
Continuing a trend in sports TV programming, the ratings for the June 9 telecast of the Belmont Stakes (gr. I) on ABC registered a 2.9, down 12% from 2006's 3.3.
The Belmont Stakes telecast June 9 on ABC, which ended up being a thrilling race with a historic finish thanks to the filly Rags to Riches, nevertheless registered modest ratings numbers that continued a downward trend for the race.
NBC reported slightly lower ratings for this year's Preakness Stakes coverage than it received in 2006 when Barbaro was going for the second jewel of racing's Triple Crown.
NBC reported overnight ratings for this year's Preakness that were slightly off last year's Barbaro Preakness numbers, but were still relatively strong for the second jewel of the Triple Crown.
NBC Sports' telecast of the 133rd Kentucky Derby May 5 averaged 11.5 million viewers, the highest number since 2001, the network reported Thursday.
Ratings for the one-hour portion of NBC's Kentucky Derby coverage May 5 that comprises the race segment of the show rose 5% over year-ago figures. NBC announced that 13.8 million viewers tuned into the race, a 7% boost from 2006.
Final U.S. national household television ratings confirmed a severe dip in the number of Americans tuned to the Breeders' Cup World Championships this year.
Television ratings were down but Web traffic was up for ESPN's maiden voyage covering the Breeders' Cup World Championships.
The National Thoroughbred Racing Association announced Wednesday that television viewership for the first four shows of its "Road to the Breeders' Cup World Championships -- Powered by Dodge" was up 45% over last year's numbers.
ABC Sports picked a tough time to get back into the Triple Crown business. Without Kentucky Derby winner Barbaro and Preakness victor Bernardini, the Belmont Stakes was left without a star attraction, and that was reflected in national television ratings for the June 10 running from New York.
Three weeks after telling the world about the condition of Barbaro directly after the horse's breakdown at the Preakness Stakes (gr. I), noted veterinarian Dr. Larry Bramlage was relaxing on the Belmont apron, enjoying the morning workouts the day before the Belmont Stakes (gr. I).
NBC's telecast of the May 20 Preakness Stakes from Pimlico Race Course near Baltimore, Md., drew a slightly higher audience than the 2005 running. The network reported a 5.4 national rating and a 14 share for the program, which ran from 5 to 6:50 p.m. EDT.
The overnight ratings for NBC's coverage of the Preakness Stakes May 20 indicated a small drop-off in viewers from 2005's numbers. The overnights, which measure viewership in 54 major markets, gave the overall telecast a 5.7 rating and a 14 share, down 4% from last year's 5.9/14.
NBC reported ratings for its May 6 Kentucky Derby telecast that were down slightly from 2005 figures, but were in line with the numbers it has received for its Run for the Roses coverage since 2000.
NBC Sports said Thursday that copy included in two feature stories presented during the May 6 telecast of the Kentucky Derby was plagiarized from NBC's hit program "The West Wing" by a freelance producer.
NBC Sports reported an 8.4 national rating and a 20 share for the race portion (5:45-6:45 p.m. EDT) of its May 6 Kentucky Derby telecast. The rating is slightly down from last year's 9.0/22 national rating for the race portion of the telecast.
Join renowned NBC broadcaster Tom Hammond as he prepares to host this year's 132nd running of the Kentucky Derby. Hammond will share his memories and insights on the eve of racing's most celebrated event and be the special guest live online for the Wednesday, April 26th edition of bloodhorse.com "Talkin' Horses" beginning at Noon.
National television ratings for NBC's telecast of the Oct. 29 Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships from Belmont Park in New York increased slightly from last year's numbers.
NBC Sports' coverage of the June 11 Belmont Stakes (gr. I) managed a 4.5 national rating/11 share for its 5:30 p.m.-7:00 p.m. EDT telecast.
Continuing a relationship that began in 2001, NBC Sports has reached an agreement with Churchill Downs Inc. and Magna Entertainment/Maryland Jockey Club to telecast the Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes an additional five years, from 2006 to 2010.
Saturday's $250,000 Rebel Stakes (gr. III) from Oaklawn Park in Hot Springs, Ark., will be televised on ESPNEWS at 6:30 p.m. ET.
Trying to piggyback on the phenomenal success of televised poker, the racing industry has high hopes for ESPN's one-hour program covering the National Handicapping Championship, which will air Sunday, Feb. 20, at 5 p.m. ET.
National television ratings for the Sunshine Millions on NBC Jan. 29 stayed on a par with year-ago numbers for the event.
NBC's telecast of the Jan. 29 Sunshine Millions from Gulfstream Park in Florida and Santa Anita Park in California earned modest overnight ratings for the network that ticked down below the 2004 edition.
NBC Sports will present live coverage of the third annual Sunshine Millions on Saturday at 4 p.m. ET.
NBC's coverage of the Oct. 30 Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships registered the lowest television ratings in the 21-year history of the event.
NBC's coverage of the Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships Oct. 30 from Lone Star Park drew a smaller television audience than the 2003 telecast from Santa Anita Park, according to overnight ratings.
The second "Road to the World Thoroughbred Championships on TVG/Fox Sports Net" show of the season will air Saturday from Calder Race Course in Miami, and will feature the Grade III, $500,000 Smile Sprint Handicap, part of Calder's "Summit of Speed." The show will air on TVG, Fox Sports Net 2, Fox Sports New York, Fox Sports South and the Sunshine Network from 5:00-6:00 p.m. ET.
"Road to the World Thoroughbred Championships Powered by Dodge," a four-month, 17-program series, returns on the ESPN networks beginning July 4 with taped coverage of last Sunday's Budweiser Irish Derby from The Curragh in Ireland.
NBC Sports' coverage of last Saturday's 136th Belmont Stakes was the week's No. 1 rated show on network television while generating the event's highest national rating since 1981.
Prompted by Smarty Jones' immensely popular run at the Visa Triple Crown, the NTRA, NYRA, and ESPN have put together an extensive block of Belmont week programming.
The Horse Racing Channel, one of Britain's two new planned dedicated horseracing television channels, has dropped the idea of charging subscribers a monthly fee, at least initially, and intends to launch as a free-to-air service, maybe by the end of the month.
- By Mark Popham
Attheraces, the dedicated racing broadcasting channel in Britain, is set to go off the air on Monday, March 29 and the prospect is that it will never return.
The ESPN networks are offereing extensive coverage of 2003 Belmont Stakes Week, featuring 11 1/2 hours of programming on ESPN, ESPN2 and ESPN Classic, beginning Sunday, June 1 and continuing through Saturday, June 7.
NBC will air the Bluegrass Stakes, Arkansas Derby, and Wood Memorial on April 12 as part of its 2003 horse racing coverage.
The National Thoroughbred Racing Association, Triple Crown Productions, and ESPN have reached an agreement to renew multiple horseracing series and special-event programming through 2008.
Beginning May 5, Thoroughbred racing fans in the Chicago area will be able to tune in to the same channel for nightly replays from local tracks.
Two television networks will provide 2 1/2 hours of coverage of major Triple Crown preps April 13.
A new network to telecast horse races was unveiled Friday by Magna Entertainment Corp., Roberts Communications Network, Inc., and Greenwood Racing, Inc. The service effectively replaces the former satellite served called The Racing Network, which ceased operations last year after failing to sign up enough customers.
The National Thoroughbred Racing Association unveiled its spring 2002 television schedule for Thoroughbred racing and outlined the full complement of programming planned for next year.
The re-entry of Magna Entertainment's seven racetracks into the National Thoroughbred Racing Association is expected to have an immediate impact on the NTRA's winter television schedule on ESPN and ESPN2, beginning with its first telecast on Feb. 3. That telecast will feature the Donn Handicap (gr. I) from Gulfstream Park and the Strub Stakes (gr. II) and San Vicente Stakes (gr. II) from Santa Anita. Both tracks are owned by Magna, whose chairman, Frank Stronach, announced on Jan. 17 in a joint statement with the NTRA that he has made a two-year commitment to rejoin the organization.
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