Governor States Kentucky “Really Enjoying” Mobile Sports Betting Market as $66.5m Bet in Four Days

  • Retail and mobile betting combined for $68m in total bets
  • Customers opened 300,000+ betting accounts with mobile sportsbooks
  • Gov. Beshear said Kentuckians have “wanted this option for so long”
  • The Governor made Kentucky’s first retail sports bet in September 


Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear
Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear, who fought so long to bring mobile sports betting to the state, says bettors are “enjoying it.” [Image:]

Big sums bet

What Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear envisioned during the years he battled to get mobile sports betting passed in the state has come to pass: big sums bet and “the dollars staying right here.”  

On Friday, Gov. Beshear took to X to share that bettors handed over $68m in total bets from Thursday to Sunday:

The $68m in four days, according to the Governor, was the combined take from retail and mobile sports betting. The latter, on its debut, saw Kentuckians bet $66.5m.

LEX 18 cited figures from the Governor’s office, stating that customers have so far opened 300,000 wagering accounts with legal mobile sportsbooks.

Wanted it so long

“We finally did it!” Beshear honked in March after HB 551 won Senate approval late in the last day of the state’s 2023 General Assembly, paving the way for last week’s market debut. For Kentucky’s leading sports betting cheerleader, the early figures must feel like sweet vindication for helping shove HB 551 across the line.

Beshear on Friday added that the response was more than anticipated, but that it shouldn’t surprise anyone “because Kentuckians have wanted this option for so long.”

The Governor has plenty of form in this respect, going back to a ‘State of the State’ speech in January 2020 when he publicly voiced his support for legal sports betting.

Now, almost four years later, Beshear has seen his goal realized and that bettors in state “are really enjoying it.”

How right it was to pass it.”

The Governor’s main mantra has always been sports betting will bring much needed tax dollars to the state coffers. After Kentucky’s opening market salvo, Beshear said the best part was all the tax dollars were staying in-state, “helping with our pension system and other needs.”

“How right it was to pass it,” Beshear reflected Friday.

Hands-on Governor

Another upshot of Kentucky’s debut weekend is that the Governor also seems as comfortable with hands-on sports betting as with the vertical’s legislative aspects.

“I still have a chance to win the very first sports bet ever made,” he stated in reference to the $20 season-long, three-leg college football parlay he made when Kentucky’s retail market went live last month. Beshear bet on both the University of Louisville and University of Kentucky football teams to win more games this year than sportsbooks predicted and for Duke to go the other way.

“UK and U of L are 5-0, and Duke has started to tank,” the on-a-roll Governor asserted Friday.

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