The Investec Derby from Epsom Downs Racecourse in the UK will be shown live on NBC Sports Network for the first time this year.
The race (won last year by Harzand pictured) attracts the best three-year-olds from Europe and is the race every horseman wants to win, given its prestige, prize-money, breeding significance and enduring legacy.
The 238th running on June 3 is worth a record £1.5m in prize-money and is set to feature the European champion two-year-old of 2016 and ante-post favourite, Churchill, trained by Aidan O’Brien.
There are at least 100 well-established ‘Derbys’ run across the horseracing world, including the Kentucky Derby, but they all stem from the Investec Derby, which was first run in 1780 following a coin toss won by Lord Derby which gave him naming rights to the race.
Racecourse Media Group (RMG), the UK-based media rights organisation which distributes top-class horseracing around the world, has entered into a partnership with NBC Sports. RMG will supply a two-hour feed, which runs from 10am to midday ET on NBC Sports Network.
Jon Miller, President of Programming for NBC Sports and NBCSN, said:
“We are excited to bring to the US audience live coverage of the Investec Derby, which the millions of Americans who watch our Triple Crown and Breeders’ Cup telecasts will be sure to enjoy.”
Phil White, London Regional Director of Jockey Club Racecourses, which owns Epsom Downs Racecourse, said:
“We are thrilled the American public will be able to enjoy the world’s greatest Flat race this year. The Investec Derby attracts the finest three-year-old Thoroughbreds to take their only chance to win this historic race that defines the future of the breed. Amongst the many thousands descending on Epsom Downs are people from every walk of British life, including Her Majesty The Queen and families enjoying a special experience. It is truly a unique event and we very much welcome NBC’s coverage.”
RMG’s Director of Broadcast, Adam Binns, said:
“We are excited that the Investec Derby at Epsom Downs, one of the UK’s greatest sporting and social occasions, will be played out in front of a mainstream American audience. The race is always attended by Her Majesty The Queen and never fails to produce a fantastic storyline – it encapsulates what British racing is all about.”