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NBC Acquires Belmont TV Rights to Complete Triple Crown

Feb. 22 (Bloomberg) -- Comcast Corp.’s NBC acquired rights to show the Belmont Stakes, enabling the network to show all three legs of horse racing’s Triple Crown.

NBC Sports also renewed its agreement to show the Preakness Stakes to go along with the Kentucky Derby. It now has rights for all three races from this year through 2015.

Comcast, which took control of NBC Universal last month, will use its Versus channel to show some of the Preakness and Belmont coverage, such as the Black-Eyed Susan Stakes for fillies at Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore and other race-day coverage at Belmont Park outside New York.

“We are now uniquely positioned to significantly expand the reach of these iconic events with extensive coverage on Versus,” Dick Ebersol, chairman of NBC Sports Group, said in a statement.

Financial details of the agreement weren’t disclosed.

This marks the first time since 2005 that all three races will be aired on the same network. Walt Disney Co.’s ABC televised the Belmont Stakes for the past five years.

Versus and NBC Sports will broadcast more than 25 hours of programming associated with the races, according to the news release. Coverage also will include the Kentucky Oaks race for fillies. A schedule will be released later.

The Derby is schedule to be run at Churchill Downs in Louisville, Kentucky, on May 7, the Preakness on May 21 and the Belmont on June 11.

To contact the reporter on this story: Eben Novy-Williams in New York at enovywilliam@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Michael Sillup at msillup@bloomberg.net

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