The Delaware Lottery has reported its sports betting data from June to July, showing the state’s three casinos took in more than $8m (£6.2m) in wagers in just over a month.
The data, covering the period from June 25 until July 29, shows the total amounts wagered on sports betting in that state. Most of the total was wagered at Delaware Park, where over $5.8m (£4.5m) was spent. This casino is located in the area that sees the most traffic, including from neighboring states like Maryland, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania.
Bettors in Delaware saw a higher win percentage during the second month of sports betting operations. During this 35-day period, gamblers won close to $7.7m (£5.95m) with betting centered on baseball and the World Cup, which finished in the middle of the month.
College football season will begin at the end of this month, and the NFL will follow soon after, so the state should certainly see an increase in wagers then. Most states in the US that are working toward offering sports betting are hoping to be launched by the football season to get in on the action.
Three Delaware gaming facilities offer sports betting: Delaware Park, Dover Downs, and Harrington Raceway. Delaware Park is the strongest operator thus far in sports betting, with total wagers of just over $5.8m (£4.48m). The number of wagers for July totalled 90,603, and the venue earned $133,843 (£103,366) after the state takes its cut and purses are added for the racetrack.
Dover Downs came in second with $1,674,262 (£1,293,024) in total bets, with close to 20,000 total wagers. The venue earned $36,296 (£28,031) after payouts. The numbers were a little lower for Harrington Raceway. Only 12,006 wagers were placed for a total of $717,474 (£554,101). The facility earned $15,417 (£11,906).
Sports betting in other states
As Delaware enjoys its second month of sports betting, other states in the US are still working on legislation to legalize it. For example, after close to two months of delays, proposed rules for sports betting in West Virginia have been made available for public comment. On Monday, the secretary of state’s office officially released the rules.
Based on state law, the rules had to be available for public comment by this Wednesday or the emergency rules that allowed sports betting implementation in the fall would have expired automatically. That would have pushed the launch of the new industry back to March of next year, or possibly later.
Casino officials in the state felt the delay was partially because of an effort by the justice administration to rewrite the rules to include a fee to be paid to the professional sports leagues from the betting revenues. Legislation did not include any such payments to the leagues, and this has reportedly been an issue of contention for the justice administration.
Earlier this week, West Virginia Gaming and Racing Association President John Cavacini said that he was relieved that the rule was allowed to move forward and now all attempts at giving sports leagues a portion of the sports betting revenues from the state have been exhausted.
He said: “I don’t know where they go from here. They’ve exhausted everything they could do.”
Ohio sports betting push
Now that the rulemaking has moved forward, the casinos in West Virginia remain on track to launch sports betting near the beginning of football season, instead of being delayed into next year.
Efforts are also being made in Ohio to legalize sports betting in the state. Two placeholder bills were introduced in July, hopefully to begin the process of moving forward with legalization.
State Senator John Eklund said: “We’ve had two bills introduced, called placeholder bills, expressing the intent of the general assembly to investigate sports wagering in Ohio and, if we’re to do it, how is it going to be done.
“What we’re doing over in the Senate is we’re assembling a list of parties who might be interested in this particular type of legislation, anticipating that we will take a series of meetings with them to sort of get the lay of the land and to sort of see where people’s temperature is.
“Starting with that process do the necessary investigation we have to do to come up with a concrete proposal that we would then present to the general assembly in some sort of an amended bill or a substitute bill.”
Ohio and West Virginia are just two examples of how sports betting is progressing in the US. Over time, it is expected that even more states will begin to introduce or discuss how they can become involved in this new industry.