How to Watch The 2019 Kentucky Derby Without Cable


Live stream the Kentucky Derby online

If you want to watch the most exciting two minutes in sports without cable or satellite TV, there are plenty of options in 2019.

Twenty horses and jockeys will compete at the 145th Kentucky Derby on Saturday, May 4.

The derby is being aired on NBC. The actual race happens at 6:50 p.m. Coverage on race day begins at 2:30 p.m.

There’s no standout favorite for the annual Run for the Roses at Churchill Downs. The Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook lists five horses at 7-1 or less to win the Derby.

So the first leg of racing’s Triple Crown appears to be wide open. The winning purse is $3 million, the highest in the race’s history.

Planning on taking part in all the pomp and circumstance on Saturday before the big race?

Chances are you will need more than two minutes of television. You’ll will probably want it on a big screen so all your guests can see the race while they sip on mint juleps.

I prefer Hulu with Live TV this year for a streaming service to watch the Kentucky Derby and other sporting events.

But I will flesh all your possible choices out in more detail in a moment.

What time is the Kentucky Derby 2019?

Coverage of this year’s Kentucky Derby starts on NBC at 2:30 p.m. ET, May 4. The actual race is at 6:50 p.m. ET

Kentucky Derby contenders 2019

Roadster, Game Winner and Improbable are all trained by Bob Baffert, a two-time winner of the Triple Crown. Baffert took the 2018 Triple Crown with Justify and the 2015 Triple Crown with American Pharoah.

Baffert wants to win his sixth Kentucky Derby. But Omaha Beach currently has the shortest odds to win the Kentucky Derby. Just to throw another variable in the mix, weather reports indicate a 20 percent chance of showers on Saturday, which could make for a very different race course.

A sample of Kentucky Derby horses and odds in 2019

Game Winner 5-1

Roadster 5-1

Omaha Beach 6-1

Improbable 7-1

Tacitus 10-1

Maximum Security 11-1

Vekoma 12-1

Can I stream the Kentucky Derby online?

Sure. will carry a simulcast of Kentucky Derby coverage. You can also use the NBC Sports Live Extra app on a streaming device for TV. But according to, you need to authenticate the app with a cable or satellite subscription to get access to live coverage.

Watch the Kentucky Derby without cable

There are two options for watching the derby without cable. If you have a TV antenna around your place, you might be good to go.

Just plug that sucker into your TV, scan for channels and make sure you have crystal clear reception.

We don’t want your guests to be disappointed.

Don’t have an antenna handy? I recommend a ClearStream Eclipse indoor antenna if you’re within decent range of broadcast towers. To figure that out, read my guide on how to choose the best TV antenna.

Unless you have some speedy delivery, or a Best Buy close by, you may be pressed for time. So you have some faster options at your disposal too.

Here are my top picks of live TV streaming services for watching the Kentucky Derby either on a PC or your television using a Roku, Apple TV or Amazon Fire TV.

Top pick: Use Hulu with Live TV to watch a Kentucky Derby Live Stream

Hulu with Live TV has the most local NBC stations than any other streaming service out there.

So it’s the best option for most people who want to quickly get coverage for the Derby before the race starts.

Hulu’s live TV package comes with about 60 live channels, 50 hours of Cloud DVR, and its full on-demand library. That’s the same on-demand library that people pay $5.99 per month and up for.

The channel lineup includes BTN, Food Network, History Channel and USA Network. The service works on Roku, Apple TV, Fire TV and Fire Sticks. Gamers can also catch Hulu with Live TV on Xbox One and Xbox 360.

There’s a free 7-day trial for new customers.

A subscription costs $44.99 per month, but there is no obligation to keep the service beyond the free trial.

Runner up: fuboTV for a Kentucky Derby live stream on NBC

fuboTV began as a sports-first platform, but has expanded into channels once exclusive to cable like A&E, FX, History Channel, Viceland and Bravo.

fuboTV carries local NBC stations in roughly 153 markets around the U.S. You can check out fuboTV using a 7-day free trial.

You’ll get 85+ channels that you can watch on your TV or mobile apps. You’ll get two simultaneous streams and 30 hours of Cloud DVR storage. Subscribers get local FOX and CBS networks alongside NBCSN, Fox Sports, FS1, FS2 and Golf Network.

fuboTV is the first streaming platform to broadcast select sporting events in 4K on networks such as NBCSN and FS1. There are no plans to broadcast the Derby in 4K.

You can check out the channel lineup to make sure NBC is in your area, and see what other sports offerings might interest you once the Kentucky Derby is over.

(Remember, it’s only two minutes long.) By the way, fuboTV also lets you activate 40 apps on streaming devices like Roku and Amazon Fire TV. If you keep fuboTV beyond the 7 day trial, your first month will be $10 off. After that, the regular monthly rate of $54.99 per month applies.  

My review of fuboTV concluded that it will be the dark horse in the race for the top live streaming TV service.

Sling TV: NBC live stream in select areas

Sling TV is a very popular service, and I was happy with the channel reception when I was a former customer. You will need to sign up for Sling Blue, which gives you 40+ channels for $25 per month.

But NBC is only available in 11 markets.

You can easily check whether Sling TV offers NBC in your market. Popular channels in the Sling Blue package include AMC, History Channel, A&E and USA Network. Go to the Sling TV site to check out their channel lineup. You can sign up for a free 7-day trial.

PlayStation Vue

PlayStation Vue is a service that I used for roughly a year, and there’s an excellent shot that you can find NBC in your market. Just head over to the PlayStation Vue page and your channel lineup will appear when you click on the Access package. That plan is $44.99 per month for 48+ channels.

The entry level Access package will also give you ESPN, ESPN2, FS1, FS2. Discovery Channel, FX, FXX, National Geographic and Travel Channel are included in the channel lineup. PlayStation Vue offers a free 5-day trial.

DirecTV Now

DirecTV Now has NBC in its new Plus channel bundle, which has 40+ channels including HBO for $50 per month. The Plus bundle also has TNT, TBS and USA Network. DirecTV Now works with most major streaming devices, including Roku, Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV and Android TV devices like NVIDIA Shield TV. 

DirecTV Now offers a free 7-day trial

This bundle also has NBCSN for watching the Derby Post Position Draw on May 1, or the Kentucky Oaks Undercard and race on May 4.  

YouTube TV

YouTube TV has local NBC networks across the U.S., and works on Roku, Chromecast, Apple TV and Android TV devices. You can look over their channel lineup and try out their service free for a week. A subscription costs $49.99 per month.

Samsung and LG TVs with Android TV software can also download the YouTube TV app. YouTube TV has ESPN, A&E and TNT as part of its channel lineup.  

So I hope this quick guide was helpful. Hulu with Live TV remains my top choice for events like the Kentucky Derby. The 7-day free trial requires no commitment, and you can cancel before the billing kicks in if you don’t want to keep the service.

OK, onto the race. Where’s my mint julep?


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  1. I tried the Hulu plus Live TV and ended up with a 2 HOUR DELAY!!! You might want to check that option and make sure it actually works! Thankfully we used the seven day free trial! Unfortunately now we don’t have that option in the future … but then again, why would I?

  2. Great suggestions! The Roku channels all say they carry NBC live until I sign up then it’s revealed it’s on demand only for my area. ? Trying the digital antenna next. Wish me luck!

  3. Be wary of Sling tv. I signed up to watch the super bowl, and it wasn’t available in my area on sling. Because I had a subscription for the world series, it cost me $25 for nothing.

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