What time does the 2024 Kentucky Derby start? What TV channel is it on?

The 150th running of the Kentucky Derby will take place Saturday afternoon, and the horses are scheduled to leave the starting gate at 7:03 p.m. ET.

If you are in Los Angeles (and who wouldn’t want to be there?), the race starts at 4:03 p.m. PT.

If you are in the Rocky Mountain area, say, Denver, it’s at 5:03 p.m. MT.

Say you live in Chicago, the race is getting later, and the horses leave the gate at 6:03 p.m. CT.

And finally, if you are at the Kentucky Derby, in the shadow of jacked-up hotel rates and full restaurants, the race starts at 7:03 p.m. ET.

And for bonus coverage, did you know that Newfoundland has a time adjustment of 30 minutes off of Atlantic time? Yes, should you be in Canada’s 10th province, the race goes off at 8:33 p.m. NT.

Now where do you watch the race. There are a couple of options. If you want to catch the first three races on the day’s card you watch them on FanDuel TV, which used to be TVG. They will have coverage all day but it may not always be live.

Then, starting at noon Eastern and 9 a.m. Pacific, you can catch the next four races on NBC’s baby network of USA. That goes until 2:30 Eastern and 11:30 Pacific when the big boys take over and it goes on NBC. And that lasts until 7:30/4:30.

Forgot your NBC stations. It’s Channel 4 in Los Angeles and New York, Channel 5 in Chicago and Channel 9 in Denver.

Once the USA coverage starts you can also stream it on Peacock until the big NBC stops coverage. Now, if all the time between races bores you, check out the series “Poker Face” with Natasha Lyonne also on Peacock. If you were a fan of the old Columbo series, you will love this show. There is only one season but a second season in the works.

As for radio? What is this, 1970?

Now, let’s say you are also interested in the lead-up to the race, let’s go over some other times. And for simplicity’s sake, we’re going to do it all in local time, with local meaning Louisville or Eastern time.

The first race of the day is at 10:30 a.m. The first stakes race, the Knicks Go, is at 12:04 p.m. At 6:16 p.m. the walkover for the derby horses from the barns to paddock starts. Then, at 6:28 p.m. the horses start arriving in the paddock. We’re now at 6:44 p.m. and Martha Stewart lights up the crowd with a “Riders up!” call.

Around 6:45 p.m. will be the call the post, that’s the thing with the bugler. Kentuckians get emotional at 6:46 p.m. with the singing of “My Old Kentucky Home,” followed at 6:48 p.m. with the post parade. The horses start to load at 7:02 p.m.

As for when to start your Kentucky Derby party, how about when you’re done reading this?

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