04/21/2014 10:48AM

Breeders' Cup, NBC reach deal to televise 18 Breeders' Cup prep races

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Eighteen of the major preps giving horses an automatic berth in a Breeders’ Cup race will be televised live on NBC or NBC Sports this summer and fall under a new agreement between Breeders’ Cup Ltd. and the network’s parent company, according to an announcement by both parties Monday.

The first broadcast June 7 will feature live coverage of the Metropolitan Handicap and the Ogden Phipps Stakes from Belmont Park. The series will conclude Oct. 5 with the Spinster and Bourbon stakes at Keeneland. Twenty-one races in all will be broadcast live under the agreement, and 18 of them are part of the Win and You’re In series, which guarantees the winners spots in one of the 14 races in the Breeders’ Cup year-end event, scheduled for Santa Anita Park in Southern California on Oct. 31 and Nov. 1.

The agreement also grants NBC Sports the multiplatform rights to the races, meaning NBC Sports can use the Breeders’ Cup brand to run promotions among its parent company’s properties, including its radio and television networks and other media outlets, such as Time Inc. and Sports Illustrated Inc. Breeders’ Cup said the assignment of the rights was part of a larger effort to market the prep races leading up to the year-end event to a wider audience, using the properties of NBC’s parent company, Comcast-NBC Universal.

Taking a page from the marketing of the Kentucky Derby, Breeders’ Cup marketing chief Drew Sheinman said part of the effort will focus on “a premier lifestyle experience full of fashion, food, entertainment, celebrities, and world-class hospitality.” At the tracks holding the prep races, Breeders’ Cup said it would organize a “VIP racing experience” and a “Champions Terrace” where the connections of the winning horses “can revel in the sweet taste of victory.”

NBC also holds the rights to televise the Kentucky Derby and the two other Triple Crown races. In recent years, Churchill Downs Inc. has pressed NBC to include more lifestyle coverage of the Derby, an effort that has resulted in a one-hour show preceding the race that focuses on celebrities, food, and fashion.

NBC’s websites also will host a promotion called the “Breeders’ Cup Million Dollar Finish,” which will allow website visitors to “play along at home for prizes,” the groups said. The two groups will also launch a new website dedicated to the Breeders’ Cup prep races “focusing on racing, lifestyle, and human-interest features from some of the country’s most iconic racetracks.”

In addition to Belmont and Keeneland, the broadcasts will include races from Santa Anita, Monmouth, Saratoga, and Del Mar.

Shawn Britton More than 1 year ago
It's about time
Randy Baker More than 1 year ago
What they need is more shots of hot chicks in fancy hats having a good time at the races .Fox news started,CNN and MSNBC followed .News flash ,sex sells.Young males should be the target audience .I remember back in the early 90s Golden Gate Fields held 3 round Gold glove boxing between races.How about MMA? Racing needs to think more outside the box.It has become a tired act.
Blaine MacMillan More than 1 year ago
The Breeders Cup has never been the same since their original voice left, that being Tom Durkin. Denman and Collmus are excellent, but Durkin is the platinum standard...
cfmhorse555 More than 1 year ago
Trevor Denman did call all of the Breeders' Cup races last year for the on-track simulcast network, the internet, and the Horse Racing Radio Network broadcast while Collmus is calling all of them on NBC and NBCSN. Many of the fans who love Trevor Denman's race calls, who prefer listening to Trevor Denman's Breeders' Cup race calls complained about the NBC and NBCSN telecast last year on social media and this website, because they watched the Breeders' Cup in the wrong source, which is NBC and NBCSN. My message to NBC, Larry Collmus, and Producer Rob Hyland is to broadcast Trevor Denman's race call of all the Breeders' Cup races, not only for the on-track Santa Anita simulcast network, the internet, and Horse Racing Radio Network broadcast, but also on NBC and NBCSN. Trevor is an icon of Santa Anita and Del Mar. NBC and Larry, if you don't cooperate with the fans who love Trevor Denman's Breeders' Cup race calls who prefer to listen to Trevor Denman's call of all the Breeders' Cup races, we will be very angry and disappointed, and we will not be happy about it.
Collette Stewart More than 1 year ago
I know most are talking about how to promote horse racing. I think it would stir interest in racing if NBC would do some special interest stories such as the different bits horses race in, not just the ordinary D bit, but all kinds of runout bits and explain why so many horses run in figure eights. . Another topic could be about the shoes they wear and of course blinkers. I trained racehorses in the 60s and shipping by air was not used much. I would like to see how the horses are loaded on the planes , are they in a "Pod" what does it look like when they are inside, does a groom fly with each horse? I would also be interested in the cost of flying a horse from CA to K. I think these "spot" reports would be real interesting. In other words, educate the public. I think people are tired of the same o same o work ups to the races. I'm not saying to do this on KD day, do a piece on each leadup prep race to the BC .
John Murray More than 1 year ago
Seven Goals to rebuilding successful Horse Racing. It is important to set goals for increasing public participation in horse racing: i. , As future horse owners, plus, ii. Active gambling bettors by educating how to wager and iii. Show existing supporters having FUN, not only seriously committed handicappers, plus iv. Follow the 'name' horses v. Please do not merely settle for attracting more potentially interested TV eyeballing 'fans' and hope that they become participants but use Social Media Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and live streaming video technologies. Most young tech saavy Millenials no longer watch TV, especially on a Saturday afternoon. Does anyone watch TV on a Saturday afternoon anymore? vi. "Fans" need to be encouraged to get involved in the aspects of the industry that will actually grow the industry. vi. The public wants uniform medication rules enforced and vii. Enforce firm guidelines for 'abusers' in action to clean up the perception of widespread corruption. viii. Public lobbying for industry alignment for a 'one 'voice administration of the sport' Slow continuous improvement on all fronts, will get us there. Cheers,
Bugsy Anderson More than 1 year ago
While those are helpful.... 6-8 are meaningless to the casual fan. That's like saying slot players want all machines made by the same company. Only die hards and gamblers care about them. 2 is most important. Not just showing the wagers and teaching them, but detailed explanations of the likelihood hood of making a big pay day. one cant possibly think they are going to strike it rich betting a couple bucks to show. The cost of the wagers and the explanation of how the payout is determined is essential
Bugsy Anderson More than 1 year ago
Clearly those that are in charge havent figured out why horse racing is declining. Many might think this is a step in the right direction but until the morons that run racing in general have a clue..... its going to continue to require slot money to survive in many locations 1) look what poker did. They paid networks to be on TV on a weekly basis. Not for special occasions, but all the time. They made Negraneau, Helmuth, Ivey, Moneymaker household names and they appeared on every ad and on every show. Poker also does something horse racing doesn't, they explain what's going on and every time some slang comes on, a graphic appears explaining what that slang meant. Ask someone who has never been to the races what "a furlong" is, or why a "handicap" is what it is, "or why some horses have blinkers". Forget the overly complicated betting, you lose fans with these "experts" talking as though people should have a clue. Those interviews with the clown on a horse watching body language might as well be speaking German cause unless you are a horse racing fan, hearing "the 4 is all washed out and full of herself" means nothing. 2) these big races around the nation dont create a storyline that will keep viewers beyond the broadcast. How is a person supposed to have a favorite horse or jockey when the horses racing on broadcast A..... may never appear on TV again? Poker is killing horse racing because every one can relate to the guy playing. How is watching these small fields in prep races going to spur interest? 3) breeders cup day has a dozen divisions, unless you are going to show em all..... this is just following a couple divisions and hoping for fans to catch on. this has to be the stupidest idea I have seen horse racing come up with at a time when clearly the sport is dying. Horse racing fans will be happy they dont have to leave the couch, no one else will care
Bugsy Anderson More than 1 year ago
Oh.... one last thing.... aint no way someone is going to tune in for 2 hours to watch 8 collective minutes of racing.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Attention span issues, have you ?
Bugsy Anderson More than 1 year ago
No.... There is no edit button
Mark Landau More than 1 year ago
Good move by the BC.
Bugsy Anderson More than 1 year ago
Nope. horrible move. This will not add fans to the sport. This will not increase the handle on BC day. This only benefits gamblers that get to stay home.
Jeffrey Szczyradlowski More than 1 year ago
Will Larry Cullmus be calling these races for NBC , he is a great guy he is now the voice of horse racing.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Trevor Demnan and Kurt Becker are better
Franck Rice More than 1 year ago
Could not agree more. There are plenty of good announcers, but Larry is the best in my opinion. So glad he will be calling Churchill. I won't be betting Churchill because of the takeout increase, but I will be listening.
John Piassek More than 1 year ago
While I am probably Larry's biggest fan, I would prefer it if the local announcers called the races. They should get their moment in the national sun.
cfmhorse555 More than 1 year ago
Trevor Denman did call all of the Breeders' Cup races last year for the on-track simulcast network, the internet, and the Horse Racing Radio Network broadcast while Collmus is calling all of them on NBC and NBCSN. Many of the fans who love Trevor Denman's race calls, who prefer listening to Trevor Denman's Breeders' Cup race calls complained about the NBC and NBCSN telecast last year on social media and this website, because they watched the Breeders' Cup in the wrong source, which is NBC and NBCSN. My message to NBC, Larry Collmus, and Producer Rob Hyland is to broadcast Trevor Denman's race call of all the Breeders' Cup races, not only for the on-track Santa Anita simulcast network, the internet, and Horse Racing Radio Network broadcast, but also on NBC and NBCSN. Trevor is an icon of Santa Anita and Del Mar. NBC and Larry, if you don't cooperate with the fans who love Trevor Denman's Breeders' Cup race calls who prefer to listen to Trevor Denman's call of all the Breeders' Cup races, we will be very angry and disappointed, and we will not be happy about it.