KY Officials Met With BetMGM, DraftKings, FanDuel, WynnBET, Circa To Form Regs

Written By Matthew Bain on July 19, 2023
KY officials met with BetMGM, DraftKings for regulations

The Kentucky Horse Racing Commission met with representatives from BetMGM, DraftKings, FanDuel, WynnBET and Circa Sports to help in the development of sports betting regulations.

That’s according to KHRC Executive Director Jamie Eads, who spoke to the Kentucky Interim Joint Committee Appropriations and Revenue on Wednesday. She said the KHRC also corresponded with the Sports Betting Alliance, which represents BetMGM, DraftKings, FanDuel and Fanatics Sportsbook.

So far, of that group of potential Kentucky sportsbooks, only FanDuel has confirmed it will launch in Kentucky via a partnership with Churchill Downs.

Significance of Eads listing these sportsbooks

If it wasn’t a 100% certainty before, Eads’ comment Wednesday all but confirms BetMGM Kentucky and DraftKings Kentucky will also go live when the industry launches in September.

Fanatics Sportsbook has not responded to two requests for comment regarding its Kentucky plans.

Representatives from WynnBET have twice informed PlayKentucky they had no information to share regarding the sportsbook’s plans for Kentucky. A representative from Circa Sports, meanwhile, has twice informed PlayKentucky the sportsbook is “exploring every opportunity” when asked about a future Kentucky launch.

Earlier this week, DraftKings told PlayKentucky it was “still pulling our plans together” for its Kentucky partnership.

Sandy’s, CDI partnerships in the mix

DraftKings has an existing relationship with Churchill Downs Inc. via its horse betting app, DK Horse. And we know CDI is partnering with multiple operators in Kentucky, not just FanDuel. Perhaps that suggests DraftKings will wind up partnering with CDI to secure its spot in Kentucky.

Or, perhaps it goes a different route and partners with Sandy’s Racing & Gaming in Ashland. John Marshall, President and COO of Revolutionary Racing, which owns Sandy’s, told PlayKentucky last week that they had selected their desired sportsbook partner and were in final negotiations, and that the partner is “a big name you would recognize.”

In June, Conor Lucas, the VP of government affairs for Revolutionary Racing, told PlayKentucky they were hoping to sign a deal with one of “the big four” sportsbooks — meaning DraftKings, FanDuel, BetMGM and Caesars.

Caesars Sportsbook Kentucky is already partnered with Keeneland and Red Mile.

So … does that mean Sandy’s will either sign a deal with DraftKings or BetMGM?

Time will tell.

The last PlayKentucky heard from Sandy’s, a spokesperson said the company should have news within the next two weeks.

Photo by PlayKentucky
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Matthew Bain

Matthew Bain started as a Content Manager for PlayKentucky and other Catena Media sites in 2022. He covered the launch of Massachusetts sports betting and the Prop 26 vs. Prop 27 battle in California. Before that, he spent six years as a sports reporter and then deputy sports editor for the Des Moines Register, during which time he won nine statewide journalism awards, including the Genevieve Mauck Stoufer Outstanding Young Iowa Journalists Award. As deputy sports editor, Matthew oversaw the Register's recruiting coverage while also innovating the outlet's high school sports coverage. Matthew graduated from San Diego State and grew up in California, but he's somehow a Boston Celtics fan. Long story.

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