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Kentucky Derby – May 4 (5-6:30 p.m. ET); Preakness Stakes – May 18 (5-6:30 p.m. ET); Belmont Stakes – June 8 (5-6:30 p.m. ET)

Fifty years ago, an NBC affiliate – WAVE-TV in Louisville, Ky. — provided the first television coverage of the Kentucky Derby. This year marked the return of the Triple Crown to NBC and the first time that all of the three races in the Visa Triple Crown series were telecast nationally by NBC. The Triple Crown was created in the 1930s by linking three historic races: the Belmont Stakes, the Kentucky Derby and the Preakness Stakes. The Belmont Stakes, first run in 1867, is the oldest of the Triple Crown events, followed by the Preakness Stakes in 1873 and the Kentucky Derby in 1875. The Derby stands as America’s oldest continuously held major sporting event, having celebrated its 125th running in 1999. The Preakness Stakes celebrated its 125th running in 2000. There have been 11 three-year-olds that have won all three races and claimed the Triple Crown. The most recent was Affirmed in 1978. The Kentucky Derby winner was Monarchos (Jorge Chavez),while Point Given (Gary Stevens) claimed victory at both Preakness and Belmont Stakes.


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