FRANKFORT, KY (WOWK) – Brick and mortar sports wagering is now officially legal in Kentucky. It became official at all participating racetracks at 10 a.m. Sept. 7, 2023.
To commemorate the historic moment, Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear made the state’s first legal sports bet at Churchill Downs.
He placed a $20 parlay bet for the “over” on wins for University of Kentucky Wildcat and University of Louisville Cardinal football season, and the “under on Duke University’s football team.
“Today is a great day to celebrate and have a little bit of fun doing so,” said Beshear. “It has taken many years to get here, but sports wagering is finally a reality in Kentucky. This is a win-win for Kentuckians, who can enjoy a quality entertainment experience and benefit from funds staying right here in our state to help us build a better Kentucky.”
Kentucky Lt. Gov. Jacqueline Coleman also placed a wager this morning at Northern Kentucky’s Turfway Park. She bet $20 on the Cincinnati Bengals to win the Super Bowl.
“Sports wagering will benefit all Kentuckians,” said Coleman. “It means more revenue for economic development, disaster relief and infrastructure projects, like new roads, bridges and clean water. It means more money for our public schools and support for the pensions of firefighters, public servants, teachers and law enforcement officers. Simply put, sports wagering is helping us build a better Kentucky for everyone.”
The legalization of sports betting in the Bluegrass State comes just in time for the kick off of the NFL season.
Mobile betting begins at the end of the month.
A full list of race and sportsbook retail locations is available on the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission’s website. The governor’s office says additional locations will be added soon.