Sportsbook Operators Approved in Kentucky, Betting Just Weeks Away

Posted on: August 22, 2023, 04:46h. 

Last updated on: August 22, 2023, 04:46h.

Kentucky regulators have granted temporary licenses to racetracks and mobile sportsbooks, allowing them to accept wagers starting next month.

Kentucky sports betting
On March 31, Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear (seated) held a ceremonial signing for House Bill 551, which legalizes sports betting in the state. This week, regulators approved retail and mobile sportsbook licenses. (Image: Gov. Andy Beshear/Twitter)

The Kentucky Horse Racing Commission has approved 12 in-person sportsbook licenses for racetracks and satellite facilities across the state, as well as eight mobile sportsbook licenses.

“The countdown continues as we move closer to sports wagering with retail locations opening in just 16 days,” Gov. Andy Beshear said in a news release. “Thank you to the KHRC commissioners for their dedication to getting this done right and getting it done in time for the opening of the NFL season.”

By September 7, the first day of in-person betting, nine facilities will be open, with three more set to open soon afterwards.

The brick-and-mortar sportsbooks will be available at the following locations on September 7: Churchill Downs and Derby City Gaming in Louisville, Ellis Park in Henderson, The Mint Gaming Hall Cumberland Run in Corbin, The Mint Gaming Hall Cumberland in Williamsburg, Newport Racing and Gaming in Newport, Oak Grove Gaming and Racing in Oak Grove, The Red Mile in Lexington, and Turfway Park in Florence. Three additional sportsbooks are also set to open soon at Derby City Gaming in downtown Louisville, Ellis Park in Owensboro, and Sandy’s Gaming and Racing in Ashland.

Mobile Betting Available on September 28

Starting from September 28, mobile wagering will also be available. Eight mobile sportsbooks, including Bet365, BetMGM, Caesars, Circa, DraftKings, Fanatics, FanDuel, and Penn Sports Interactive, have received temporary service provider licenses. A service provider license has also been granted to Kambi, which will operate Churchill Downs’ retail facilities but not a mobile sportsbook.

Starting from August 28, Kentuckians can pre-register for accounts with mobile sportsbooks and begin depositing money on September 7.

Each mobile sportsbook operator must partner with a racetrack in the state, as required by Kentucky’s sports betting law. Partnerships include Bet365 and BetMGM with Sandy’s Gaming and Racing, Caesars with The Red Mile, Circa and DraftKings with Cumberland Run and its satellite locations, Fanatics with Oak Grove, Fanduel with Turway Park and its satellite, and Penn Sports with Ellis Park Henderson and Owensboro.

Catalog of Eligible Events

In the upcoming weeks, the Horse Racing Commission will release a catalog of eligible events and the types of wagers that bettors can place before the official launch of betting on September 7.

It is expected that betting will be available for professional and collegiate sports for adults over the age of 18. Unlike many other states, Kentucky does not require bettors to be at least 21 years old.

Officials anticipate that sports betting will generate $23 million per year once the program becomes fully operational. A portion of the proceeds will be used to administer the sports betting program, while 2.5% of the collected money will be allocated to address the effects of problem gambling.

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