Churchill Downs and Sports Betting

Churchill Downs Incorporated (CDI) (Nasdaq:CHDN) has announced an agreement with Golden Nugget Atlantic City (“Golden Nugget”) to enter into the New Jersey real money online gaming (iGaming) and sports betting markets, subject to sports wagering legislation and gaming license approvals. CDI is targeting the first quarter 2019 to begin accepting legal wagers for iGaming and sports betting in New Jersey.

“We are looking forward to offering integrated iGaming and sports betting products in New Jersey,” said Bill Carstanjen, CEO of Churchill Downs.  “We have the unique opportunity to leverage our knowledge and experience operating the largest legal online horse racing wagering business in the U.S. as we enter the iGaming and sports betting markets.”

“We welcome Churchill Downs, a respected U.S. gaming operator with online wagering experience, to New Jersey,” said Thomas Winter, senior vice president and general manager, Online Gaming, for Landry’s Golden Nugget. “The addition of their offering will allow Golden Nugget Atlantic City to cater to an even larger demographic of New Jersey online players.”

The Golden Nugget Atlantic City, located on Frank S. Farley Marina, is a premier resort destination, offering guests more than 740 rooms and suites.  The Golden Nugget has established strong brand recognition worldwide with locations in Las Vegas and Laughlin, Nevada; Biloxi, Mississippi; and Lake Charles, Louisiana.  Launched in November 2013, GoldenNuggetCasino.com is the number one U.S. online casino and was voted Operator of the Year three years in a row from 2015 to 2017 at the iGaming North America Awards.  Golden Nugget Atlantic City accounts for 35% of the New Jersey online gaming market.

Churchill winner's circleChurchill Downs Incorporated (CDI) (Nasdaq:CHDN), headquartered in Louisville, Kentucky, is an industry-leading racing, gaming and online entertainment company anchored by our iconic flagship event – The Kentucky Derby.  We are the largest legal online account wagering platform for horseracing in the U.S., through our ownership of TwinSpires.com and have announced our plans to enter the U.S. real money online gaming and sports betting markets.  We are also a leader in brick-and-mortar casino gaming with approximately 10,000 gaming positions in eight states.  Additional information about CDI can be found online at www.churchilldownsincorporated.com.

Source: Press Release

Major Deal between Paddy Power Betfair and Fan Duel?

Paddy Power Betfair Plc is in talks to merge its U.S. unit with closely held website FanDuel as the Irish bookmaker positions itself for expanded sports betting in the U.S. following a Supreme Court ruling this week.

 “Discussions are ongoing and there is no certainty as to whether agreement will be reached, or as to the terms or timing of any transaction,” stated…

U.S. Supreme Court Rules in Favor of Legalized Sport Betting

The United States Supreme Court building in Washington DC.

Monday, May 14, 2018

According to CNN: “The Supreme Court cleared the way [today] for states to legalize sports betting, striking down a 1992 federal law that had prohibited most states from authorizing sports betting.

The court said the federal law violated constitutional principles limiting the federal government from controlling state policy. It unconstitutionally required states to prohibit sports betting under their own laws.
More updates to follow.

China to Expand Horse Racing, Sports Betting

The Chinese government has revealed plans to develop a horse racing industry and expand sports lotteries to boost tourism to the holiday island of Hainan.

According to a report by official news agency Xinhua, horse racing will be one of a number of activities promoted on Hainan alongside beach and water sports as part of a reform agenda approved by cabinet. Hainan would also “explore the development of sports lottery and instant lottery on large-scale international games.”

Hong Kong horse racingChina already allows certain forms of sports betting operated by the government’s China Sports Lottery while a government-run lottery system is also widespread across the country.

It remains unclear exactly how an expanded sports lottery might work, however reports that the initiative might eventually lead to legal casinos in Hainan seem to be both unfounded and sensationalist, with multiple reports of impending casino legislation in Hainan over the years having amounted to nothing. Attempts by some Hainan hotels to launch small gaming operations were quickly shut down in 2013, while China made no secret of its stance when it arrested employees of Korean casino operators Paradise Group and Grand Korea Leisure in 2015 and Australia’s Crown Resorts in 2016 for promoting gambling on the mainland.

Macau-based analyst Grant Govertsen has also been quick to downplay the news, stating in a Sunday note that, “While various media outlets are trumpeting the ‘gaming’ aspects – as if the center point of this PRC policy is gaming – the reality is that the policy in no way approves anything remotely close to casinos, nor does it even suggest this is a future possibility. Rather, what was announced was a free port concept within a special economic zone.

“Buried inside an exhaustive list of policies, it suggests the development of horse racing – but importantly omits any references to wagering. It also recommends that the idea of an international-style lottery be studied, and we highlight that the lottery verbiage says ‘explore’ rather than ‘develop,’ which suggests that even a lottery isn’t a done deal.”

Govertsen also quashed wildly ambitious speculation – first prompted by a recent Bloomberg article pointing to the potential relaxing of rules around online gambling, lotteries and sports betting – about the future of casinos in Hainan.

“It is critical to keep in mind that gambling in all forms (other than a small lottery exception) is illegal within China,” he said. “As part of the anti-corruption campaign the government made it a point that officials shouldn’t even play mahjong given its gambling characteristics.

“While the government is encouraging the development of a horse racing industry in Hainan (as they have in other parts of China) they are not encouraging the concurrent development of a horse wagering industry. We therefore think the legalization of casinos within China remains highly unlikely.”

Sports Betting on Fire in Spain. Horse Racing Added?

“At the moment for Spanish players the sports they bet on are football, basketball and tennis but I think horse racing is growing, quite fast actually, and it is a product that has to be there.”

The fast-growing Spanish online gaming and betting market could soon be worth a billion euros a year, with experts predicting plenty of room for growth in the booming sector. Online betting figures for 2017 show gross gaming revenue for sports and casino games rocketed to 560 million euros ($687 million), driven largely by sports. Christian Tirabassi,… [Read more…]

Horse Racing Panel Encourages Racing to be Ready for Sports Wagering

Sports bettingAs one tote company executive sees it, should expanded sports wagering soon become reality, horse racing needs to make sure those sports bettors place their wagers onsite at racetracks or online at advance-deposit wagering outlets.

Source: Panel Encourages Racing to be Ready for Sports Wagering

Horse Racing and Hockey?

NY Islanders Bid Selected For Belmont Park Development

You may have recently heard … the state of New York has selected a bid by the NHL franchise Islanders to build an 18,000-seat arena on a 43-acre site at Belmont Park.

Source: NY Islanders Bid Selected For Belmont Park Development

Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS): Is it gambling?

A Game of Skill or Gambling?

Some states, such as Nevada recently banned sites like fantasy sports website DraftKings after accusations surfaced of employees participating in the contests with insider information. Some believe the websites should be regulated like gambling websites.

Source: Daily fantasy sports: Is it gambling?

NJ’s Christie to Attend Sports Betting Arguments at U.S. Supreme Court

A “cautiously optimistic” Gov. Chris Christie will be at the U.S. Supreme Court Monday to to lend moral support as New Jersey lawyers try to convince the justices to allow legal sports betting at Garden State racetracks and casinos. “I’m looking forward to being in court,” Christie told reporters at a public event in Newark Wednesday.… [Read more…]

U.S. Supreme Court agrees to hear N.J. sports betting case

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Supreme Court agreed Tuesday to hear arguments on whether sports betting should be legalized in New Jersey. The justices, as is custom, gave no reason for agreeing to hear the appeal of a court decision that threw out the state’s latest effort to bring sports betting to its casinos and race tracks.… [Read more…]