Jockeys riding on horses in the Kentucky Derby.

The Kentucky Derby on NBC and Peacock Is the Most Watched Sporting Event Since Super Bowl, Averaging Nearly 15 Million Viewers

Key Takeaways

NBC’s Kentucky Derby coverage peaked at 16.6 million viewers as Mage crossed finish line.
Led by Peacock, 2023 Kentucky Derby is most streamed horse race ever – up 50% from last year.
The Preakness Stakes is Sat., May 20 at 4:30 p.m. ET on NBC & Peacock.

Stamford, CT

NBC Sports’ presentation of the 149th Kentucky Derby, won by Mage, averaged a Total Audience Delivery (TAD) of 14.8 million viewers – making it the most-watched sporting event and second most watched show (Academy Awards) since Super Bowl LVII in February.

Additional viewership highlights from Saturday’s Kentucky Derby coverage:

  • With 14.8 million viewers, the 2023 Kentucky Derby is NBC Sports’ 14th consecutive presentation of the “Run for the Roses” to top 14.5 million viewers (excludes 2020 event which was held in Sept.).
  • Viewership peaked at 16.6 million viewers from 7-7:15 p.m. ET on NBC, as Mage took the lead in the homestretch and won by a length. Mage is only the third horse to win the Kentucky Derby without racing as a two-year old, joining 2018 Triple Crown winner Justify, and Apollo (1882).
  • The TV-only average audience of 14.4 million viewers is NBC’s most-watched program since the NFL Playoffs in January.
  • Led by Peacock, the event posted a record Average Minute Audience (AMA) of 371,000 viewers across NBCUniversal streaming platforms – up 50% from last year (247,000).
  • The NBC-TV household rating for the broadcast (6:31-7:21 p.m. ET) was a 6.9/24.

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

148TH PREAKNESS STAKES ON NBC SPORTS, MAY 20: In two weeks, Kentucky Derby winner Mage attempts the next step in his Triple Crown quest. NBC Sports’ coverage of The 148th Preakness Stakes from Pimlico Racecourse in Baltimore, Md., begins with the Black-Eyed Susan Stakes on Friday, May 19, at 4:30 p.m. ET on Peacock.  NBC Sports presents The Preakness Stakes on Saturday, May 20, at 4:30 p.m. ET on NBC and Peacock, with coverage beginning at 1 p.m. ET on CNBC and Peacock.