VegasInsider.com
VI Mobile Scores and Betting OddsVI Mobile Scores and Betting Odds Be Social
Home
NFL
NBA
NHL
MLB
NCAA FB
NCAA BK
Golf
Auto
Horses
Soccer
Fantasy Sports
More
Betting Tools

 
NBC boosts buildup for Belmont

NEW YORK (AP) - NBC and its cable sports affiliate have twice as much time set aside for coverage of Saturday's Belmont Stakes than they did last year, anticipating big interest in California Chrome's attempt to win horse racing's Triple Crown.

Advertisement
Barring a late scratch, it will be the 12th time since Affirmed won in 1978 that a horse enters the Belmont after having already won the Kentucky Derby and Preakness.

The NBC Sports Network began its buildup with ''California Chrome: The Unlikely Champion,'' a documentary narrated by Bob Costas that premiered Wednesday and is being repeated five times. Extended coverage of the race begins at 4:30 p.m. EDT on NBC.

Viewership interest in the Belmont essentially doubles when there's a horse entered with the chance of becoming a Triple Crown winner. The last five years, with no Triple Crown at stake, viewership ranged between 4.9 million and 7.7 million, the Nielsen company said.

When Big Brown tried to win the Triple Crown in 2008, the audience jumped to 13.1 million. The 21.9 million who watched Smarty Jones finish second in 2004 was the most since 1991, when Nielsen began regularly making reliable audience counts.

Rob Hyland, coordinating producer of NBC's coverage, said Thursday the relatively modest means of California Chrome's owners has contributed to interest this year. He measures interest with a non-complicated metric: both his mom and non-sports fan neighbors in Connecticut have talked with him about it.

''That's sort of a slice of what a lot of people are experiencing with this horse and this story,'' Hyland said.

He's added six cameras to NBC Sports' coverage, including one that will follow California Chrome for the entire day of the race, starting with an early-morning workout.

''Because of this horse and his magnetism, because of his actions and all of the stories that go along with this horse, I think it's going to be a huge event,'' said NBC sportscaster Tom Hammond. ''I can remember when Smarty Jones went after the Triple Crown, it was like America stopped to see if we would have a Triple Crown winner.''

Larry Collmus, who will be calling the race for NBC, said he will focus more on California Chrome than the other horses, but won't ignore them.

''Like a normal racing fan, I think I want to root for California Chrome, but in the race call I really can't root for California Chrome.''

Copyright 2017 by STATS LLC and Associated Press.
Any commercial use or distribution without the express written
consent of STATS LLC and Associated Press is strictly prohibited.

  
HEADLINES
News: 2017 Kentucky Derby Odds
Tirico takes over NBC's horse coverage
Castellano among 4 elected to HOF
Jockey Albarado out of Kentucky Derby
Castellano eyeing elusive Derby win
Jockey James Long dies at 62
Derby-winning trainer Whiting dies
Senior Investment wins at Keeneland
Pee Wee Reese wins on J. Robinson Day
MORE HEADLINES
 
HORSE RACING EXPERT
Mike Dempsey Mike covers the New York racing circuit (Aqueduct, Belmont Park, and Saratoga) year round as well as Keeneland, Churchill Downs, the Triple Crown, and the Breeders' Cup.
The 2015 Triple Crown saw Mike correctly predict American Pharoah to win both the Preakness Stakes and Belmont Stakes. Mike nailed the Exacta and Trifecta in the Belmont Stakes.

Mike had a solid 2014 Triple Crown race season, correctly picking the winning horse in 2 of 3 races. He selected I'll Have another to win The Preakness, and nailed Union Rags to win the Belmont Stakes as his top pick.

Mike also had past succes in the Kentucky Derby, winning with Animal Kingdom in 2011 and rode his top picks, Super Saver and Street Sense, to the finish line in 2010 and 2007 respectively.

No handicapper in the industry works harder to bring you analysis that produces profits at the track!

Mike's Reports include his selections, detailed analysis, a fair odds line, and wagering recommendations for the entire card.

Join Mike daily with top picks from Belmont. You can also get his Weekend Best Plays Report in his Multi-Track package or sit at the track with him for 30 Days with his Monthly Horse Package!
Horse Racing Expert Picks - Kentucky Derby
HORSE RACING EXPERT
Jerry Sessa Jerry "Shots" Sessa has been involved in horse racing for over 30 years. He now brings his meticulous handicapping style to VegasInsider.com. When Jerry posts picks you are getting his best bets...when you win, he wins.
Jerry opened the 2016 Triple Crown season by hitting his Derby Day best bet, Nyquist. He also nailed the Derby exacta for a $30.60 payout. On 4/16/16 at Keeneland, Jerry hit an $819 exacta that led to a $38k Trifecta & a $300k Super.

In the 2015 Belmont Stakes Jerry dominated races 8-11 by hitting a $4,400 Pick 4, 3 Daily Doubles, 2 Pick 3's and calling American Pharoah as the first Triple Crown winner in 36 years.

Jerry is always looking to repeat his 2012 Triple Crown success, when he selected the winning horses for The Preakness and The Belmont Stakes.

Jerry looks forward to working with everyone and making money for anyone who invests in his picks on a daily basis.

Join Jerry daily with picks from Belmont Park and Santa Anita or choose a package that contains selections from Multiple Tracks for the LOW PRICE of $19.95! Or better yet, how about 30 Days of horse racing picks with his Monthly Racing Package for ONLY $99.95!
  
corner graphic
With a VI Gold Membership, you can SAVE 10% off a Live Odds subscription, SAVE 20% off Daily Pick packages, and receive access to up to 1,000 Member Plays each month!
VI Gold Membership