Kentucky sports wagering is off to strong start

FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) — Sports betting in Kentucky is off to a strong start right out of the gate, attracting more than $4.5 million in wagering since launching two weeks ago, Gov. Andy Beshear said Thursday.

And the pace will pick up significantly in a week when mobile wagering launches, he said.

Sports wagering facilities opened across the Bluegrass State on Sept. 7 in the first phase of the rollout, made possible when the Legislature finished work on a bill to legalize, regulate and tax sports wagering in late March during the final hours of its annual session. Beshear quickly signed the measure into law.

Beshear placed the first sports bet at Churchill Downs, home of the Kentucky Derby, fulfilling a pledge that his administration would launch sports wagering in time for the NFL regular season. Opening day for sports betting came on the same day as the NFL’s first game of the season.

Since the retail launch, preliminary figures show sports wagering has topped $4.5 million across Kentucky, Beshear said in an update during his regular news conference.

“This is a strong number that certainly reflects the excitement Kentuckians have for the opening of sports wagering,” the Democratic governor said. “With college football and the NFL season underway, plus the launch of mobile wagering, we expect that number will grow significantly.”

Beshear pushed to legalize sports betting throughout his term. The governor is seeking reelection this year, and his Republican challenger, Daniel Cameron, also touted what he sees as the benefits of sports wagering for Kentucky at a gubernatorial forum Wednesday night.

“I’m pleased that we have sports wagering here in the commonwealth,” Cameron said. “And I certainly think that it will have an economic benefit to our state. There’s no question about that.”

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Kentucky sports wagering is off to strong start was first seen on Sports Betting Operator