NASCAR Now Offering Live Sports Betting for Las Vegas Playoff Race

  • NASCAR is launching its first form of in-race betting this weekend
  • It is partnering with sportsbooks in Nevada, New York, Iowa, and Mississippi
  • A more extensive in-race betting rollout will come into place for the 2020 season
  • NASCAR is working with Genius Sports to distribute exclusive in-race data to sportsbooks
NASCAR cars on a racetrack with audience watching on
NASCAR is launching in-race betting across a number of US sportsbooks this weekend. [Image: Shutterstock.com]

Increasing sports betting focus

NASCAR has been putting a lot more attention on sports betting, starting with the upcoming Las Vegas Playoff race. The auto-racing events company is looking to partner up with some of the local casinos in Las Vegas to have live in-race betting for those watching. 

the first time that bettors will be able to place wagers during the actual race

Plans are in place for live betting to start on Sunday at sportsbooks across the United States. There will be a cap on the amount of in-race markets, with outright winners and stage winners set to be among the markets on offer.

At the moment, most sportsbooks just offer pre-race bets on who will be the winner, group props, futures, and head-to-head match-ups. This is the first time that bettors will be able to place wagers during the actual race.

Popularity of live sports betting

Live sports betting is extremely popular as bettors can react to the action as it unfolds. It is not just in Las Vegas that the in-race betting markets will be on offer.

The Resorts World Catskills Casino sportsbook in New York, the Q Casino in Iowa, and the Pearl River Casino in Mississippi will all be providing bettors with access to these in-race markets. 

Speaking about this new approach, the managing director of gaming at NASCAR, Scott Warfield, said:

In-race betting in particular can be 70-75% of all bets placed.”

He added that anything that makes fans watch a race for longer is going to be of great value to the sport. According to Warfield, every lap will soon be a new betting opportunity. 

Future plans

This is just the beginning of NASCAR’s in-race betting plans. It is focusing on the 2020 season for a more extensive roll-out. This will see in-race markets such as the number of lead changes, number of passes in a race, and fastest lap times being introduced. 

The upcoming weekend in Las Vegas is the very first phase of the NASCAR project that is under way. 

Laying the foundations

It was in May that NASCAR teamed up with Genius Sports in what has been considered a key partnership for the auto-racing sports events business. Genius Sports collects and distributes exclusive in-race data and provides it to sportsbooks, which can then create betting odds in-race based on this information.

The likes of the NFL and the PGA Tour have similar deals in place with other sports data partners.

Boosting engagement and viewership

NASCAR has been looking to embrace sports betting as a way to increase fan engagement and viewership numbers.

As interest in the sport has been dipping in recent years, NASCAR’s aim is to try and reach new markets. Drivers and teams can now obtain gambling sponsors once they follow certain guidelines. 

NASCAR also has a partnership deal with the Action Network, making it the first sporting organization to sign up with the network. The agreement involves the creation of content focused on sports betting, such as regular analysis, updates, tips, and coverage of fantasy games.

A lot of people in the sport believe that embracing sports betting is a smart move. Racing legend Dale Earnhardt Jr has said “it would create more excitement, bring more attention, more people in attendance. I can see it having a ton of positives.”