NBC and Peacock Deliver Most Watched “Run for the Roses” Since 1989, As Mystic Dan Wins in Thrilling Photo Finish in 150th Kentucky Derby

Viewership Peaked at 20.1 Million Viewers – Best-Ever for an NBC Sports Kentucky Derby Presentation 

Led by Peacock, 2024 Kentucky Derby is Most Streamed “Run for the Roses” Ever

NBC Sports and Churchill Downs Extend Historic Partnership – NBC and Peacock to Be Media Home of Kentucky Derby through 2032


Derby-Winner Mystik Dan Invited to Run in 149th Preakness Stakes — Sat., May 18 at 4:30 p.m. ET on NBC & Peacock

STAMFORD, Conn. (May 05, 2024) – NBC Sports’ presentation of the 150th Kentucky Derby, a thriller won by Mystik Dan, averaged a Total Audience Delivery (TAD) of 16.7 million viewers – marking the largest Kentucky Derby audience since 1989 (18.5 million viewers on ABC, won by Sunday Silence). 

Viewership peaked at 20.1 million viewers from 7-7:15 p.m. ET, as Mystik Dan edged second-place Sierra Leone and third-place Forever Young in the Kentucky Derby’s first three-horse photo finish since 1947. Saturday’s peak audience was the largest ever for an NBC Sports presentation of the Kentucky Derby.

Led by Peacock, the “Run for the Roses” posted NBC Sports’ largest streaming audience for a horse racing eventwith an Average Minute Audience (AMA) of 714,000 viewers – nearly doubling last year (371,000).

NBC Sports has averaged 15+ million viewers across all platforms for 11 of the last 15 Kentucky Derby races held in May (2009-2024, excludes 2020 Covid-impacted event which was moved to September).

Yesterday, NBC Sports and Churchill Downs announced an extension to their historic partnership, with NBC and Peacock continuing to be the media home of the Kentucky Derby through 2032. With the extension, NBCUniversal will become the first media company to present the most prestigious event in horse racing for three decades (32 editions of the Kentucky Derby from 2001-32).

Additional Kentucky Derby viewership notes:

  • With 16.7 million viewers, the 2024 Kentucky Derby marks a 13% increase from last year’s event (14.8 million) and will rank as NBC’s most-watched program since the NFL Divisional Playoffs in January.
  • The NBC-TV household rating for the broadcast (6:31-7:24 p.m. ET) was 7.5/27 – up 9% from last year. The 27 share is the highest ever for an NBC Sports Kentucky Derby presentation.

Total Audience Delivery is based upon live-plus-same day fast national figures from Nielsen and digital data from Adobe Analytics.

149TH PREAKNESS STAKES ON NBC AND PEACOCK, MAY 18: Kentucky Derby winner Mystik Dan has been invited to take the next step towards the Triple Crown at the Preakness Stakes, in two weeks on Saturday, May 18. NBC Sports’ coverage of the 149th Preakness Stakes from Pimlico Racecourse in Baltimore, Md., begins with the Black-Eyed Susan Stakes on Friday, May 17, at 4:30 p.m. ET on Peacock.  NBC Sports presents the 149th Preakness Stakes on Saturday, May 18, at 4:30 p.m. ET on NBC and Peacock, with coverage beginning at 1:30 p.m. ET on CNBC and Peacock.

Fri., May 174:30 p.m.Black-Eyed Susan StakesPeacock
Sat., May 181:30 p.m.Preakness SaturdayCNBC, Peacock
Sat., May 184:30 p.m.Preakness StakesNBC, Peacock


About Churchill Downs Incorporated

Churchill Downs Incorporated (“CDI”) (Nasdaq: CHDN) has been creating extraordinary entertainment experiences for nearly 150 years, beginning with the company’s most iconic and enduring asset, the Kentucky Derby. Headquartered in Louisville, Kentucky, CDI has expanded through the development of live and historical racing entertainment venues, the growth of the TwinSpires horse racing online wagering business and the operation and development of regional casino gaming properties. www.churchilldownsincorporated.com

This news release contains various “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of the “safe harbor” provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Forward-looking statements are typically identified by the use of terms such as “anticipate,” “believe,” “could,” “estimate,” “expect,” “intend,” “may,” “might,” “plan,” “predict,” “project,” “seek,” “should,” “will,” “scheduled,” and similar words or similar expressions (or negative versions of such words or expressions), although some forward-looking statements are expressed differently.

Although we believe that the expectations reflected in such forward-looking statements are reasonable, we can give no assurance that such expectations will prove to be correct. Important factors, that could cause actual results to differ materially from expectations include the following: the occurrence of extraordinary events, such as terrorist attacks, public health threats, civil unrest, and inclement weather, including as a result of climate change; the effect of economic conditions on our consumers’ confidence and discretionary spending or our access to credit, including the impact of inflation; additional or increased taxes and fees; the impact of any pandemics, epidemics, or outbreaks of infectious diseases, including possible new variants of COVID-19, and related economic matters on our results of operations, financial conditions and prospects; lack of confidence in the integrity of our core businesses or any deterioration in our reputation; loss of key or highly skilled personnel, as well as general disruptions in the general labor market; the impact of significant competition, and the expectation that competition levels will increase; changes in consumer preferences, attendance, wagering, and sponsorships; risks associated with equity investments, strategic alliances and other third-party agreements; inability to respond to rapid technological changes in a timely manner; concentration and evolution of slot machine and historical racing machine (HRM) manufacturing and other technology conditions that could impose additional costs; failure to enter into or maintain agreements with industry constituents, including horsemen and other racetracks; inability to successfully focus on market access and retail operations for our TwinSpires sports betting business and effectively compete; online security risk, including cyber-security breaches, or loss or misuse of our stored information as a result of a breach including customers’ personal information could lead to government enforcement actions or other litigation; reliance on our technology services and catastrophic events and system failures disrupting our operations; inability to identify, complete, or fully realize the benefits of our proposed acquisitions, divestitures, development of new venues or the expansion of existing facilities on time, on budget, or as planned; difficulty in integrating recent or future acquisitions into our operations; cost overruns and other uncertainties associated with the development of new venues and the expansion of existing facilities; general risks related to real estate ownership and significant expenditures, including risks related to environmental liabilities; personal injury litigation related to injuries occurring at our racetracks; compliance with the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act or other similar laws and regulations, or applicable anti-money laundering regulations; payment-related risks, such as risk associated with fraudulent credit card or debit card use; work stoppages and labor problems; risks related to pending or future legal proceedings and other actions; highly regulated operations and changes in the regulatory environment could adversely affect our business; restrictions in our debt facilities limiting our flexibility to operate our business; failure to comply with the financial ratios and other covenants in our debt facilities and other indebtedness; increases to interest rates (due to inflation or otherwise), disruption in the credit markets or changes to our credit ratings may adversely affect our business; increase in our insurance costs, or inability to obtain similar insurance coverage in the future, and any inability to recover under our insurance policies for damages sustained at our properties in the event of inclement weather and casualty events; and other factors described under the heading “Risk Factors” in our most recent Annual Report on Form 10-K and in other filings we make with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

We do not undertake any obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, except as required by law.