Tom Hammond, one of sports broadcasting’s most respected and versatile talents, hosts NBC’s horse racing coverage, including the Kentucky Derby, Preakness and Belmont Stakes, as well as Summer at Saratoga and the Breeders’ Cup. He also calls NBC’s figure skating and college basketball and has called NBC’s NFL Wildcard playoff game. From 1992-2013, he served as the lead play-by-play voice on Notre Dame Football on NBC.
In addition, Hammond contributes to NBC Sports Group’s coverage of the Olympic Games, most recently serving as the figure skating play-by-play announcer at the 2014 Olympic Winter Games in Sochi for his 11th Olympics assignment with NBC. In Salt Lake City, his first Winter Games, Hammond hosted figure skating, a cornerstone of the Winter Olympics. He again filled the role at the Torino Games, and in 2010 at the Vancouver Games. For the Summer Olympic Games, Hammond has served as the network’s track and field play-by-play announcer since the 1992 Barcelona Games, where he also called diving. At the 2000 Sydney Olympics, Hammond called gymnastics in addition to track and field. Hammond’s first made his Olympic debut in 1988 at the Seoul Games as the men’s and women’s basketball play-by-play commentator.
Hammond’s association with NBC Sports dates back to the network’s regional college basketball broadcasts in the late 1970s. His big break came in 1984, when he was hired on what was intended to be a one-time-only basis as a reporter for NBC’s telecast of the inaugural Breeders’ Cup World Thoroughbred Championships. That telecast won the prestigious Eclipse Award, and Hammond has been involved with NBC Sports ever since.
What started as a one-time network opportunity has blossomed into a wide-ranging network career for Hammond – his conversational style is at home anywhere on the sports landscape. Hammond’s vast body of work with the network has ranged from Thoroughbred horse racing broadcasts, track and field, gymnastics, figure skating, and football to working several years as a play-by-play announcer for NBC’s coverage of the NBA and WNBA.
In September 2001, Hammond was inducted into the Kentucky Athletic Hall of Fame and in April of 2000, Hammond was honored as a distinguished alumnus of the University of Kentucky, where he earned bachelors and masters degrees in equine genetics. Hammond is a native and resident of Lexington, Ky., where he lives with his wife, Sheilagh. They are the parents of a daughter and two sons. He is on the board of directors for the Thursday’s Child organization, which facilitates special needs adoptions.