05/01/2002 12:00AM

ESPN renews racing contract


Prep races for the Triple Crown and World Thoroughbred Championships will continue to be televised on ESPN and ESPN2 through 2008, racing and television officials announced on Wednesday.

ESPN's current contracts with Triple Crown Productions and the National Thoroughbred Racing Association, which controls most horse racing broadcasts outside the Triple Crown, were set to expire at the end of 2003.

The new agreement includes "Citgo Racing to the Kentucky Derby," a nine-broadcast series; "Road to the World Thoroughbred Championships," which includes 17 broadcasts; the revamped "Wire to Wire" weekly program, formerly called "Racing Digest;" coverage of post-position draws for the Triple Crown races; and other Triple Crown-related coverage, along with other programs.