Would it really be the first weekend in May without big hats, small snacks and the first leg of the American Triple Crown? Of course not. The fastest two minutes in sports is back this weekend in Louisville, Kentucky, where the top Thoroughbreds around are racing one and a quarter miles at Churchill Downs.
If you’re into all things equestrian or you’ve got a few bucks riding on the race but you weren’t able to attend the event in person this year, you may be wondering how to watch the Kentucky Derby without cable. Luckily there are a few viable options for the cord-cutters out there when the 148th Kentucky Derby goes down on May 7.
And who wouldn’t want to catch all of that action? With Zandon leading the odds in this year’s race (3-1) and Epicenter and Messier also among the most favored horses this time around, it’s just as much fun to watch for the names as it is to place a couple of dollars on who you want to win.
Ready to see how it all pans out? Grab a mint julep and get settled because coverage begins at noon, ET on USA Network and picks up on NBC and Peacock from 2:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. ET. (The race itself kicks off at 6:57 p.m. ET so plan your washroom breaks accordingly.) Read on to see how to watch the Kentucky Derby without cable this weekend.
1. Peacock Premium
NBC’s streaming service may have canceled its Saved By the Bell reboot, but it’s definitely still carrying the year’s most popular horse race. You’ll need a premium subscription to watch the Kentucky Derby without cable, but don’t forget that also gives you access to pretty much anything and everything that airs on NBC — from other live events and sports to episodes of the new Law & Order. Oh, and you also get access to all of the streamer’s original content, like Bel-Air.
2. Sling TV Blue
It’s okay to feel blue this weekend, or at least it is if you’re looking to watch the Kentucky Derby without cable. That’s because Sling Blue offers both USA Network and NBC (in select cities, be sure to double-check yours). With Sling Blue you can watch more than 45 channels on up to three screens at a time, plus the service comes with 50 hours of free DVR storage so you can record some of that action and catch up later.
3. YouTube TV
OVERALL TV ALTERNATIVE
We’re big fans of YouTube TV thanks to its stellar content (including NBC and USA Network), high resolution streaming capabilities (1080p), excellent interface and unlimited cloud DVR storage. If you’ve been contemplating cutting the cord for a while now and are looking for a comprehensive alternative that still offers live events — like the Kentucky Derby — YouTube TV is an affordable and practical option.
4. Hulu + Live TV
Catch USA Network and NBC with a Hulu + Live TV subscription, which comes with more than 60 channels of content. Actually, a subscription also gives you access to Disney+ and ESPN+, not to mention an entire on-demand library of Hulu content and originals, like Normal People, The Girl From Plainville and Woke. These days, a Hulu + Live TV subscription also comes with an unlimited DVR, so if you do happen to miss those two minutes of racing action, you can easily rewind and go back.
5. DirecTV Stream
Sure, this live TV streaming service is one of the most expensive on the market, but it also happens to include USA Network and NBC, so your Kentucky Derby needs shall be met on May 7. That said, DirecTV Stream offers more regional sports broadcasts than many of its competitors, so if you’re looking for a place to catch lots of games in the future, you may want to consider its Choice Package.
If you want to learn how to watch the Kentucky Derby without cable and you also happen to like a lot of international sports, consider a subscription to fuboTV. The service boasts a large number of channels and niche sports networks, plus it offers 250 hours of cloud DVR and you can have up to three simultaneous streams. It also comes with a seven-day free trial, so maybe now’s the time to take it for a test drive.