Kentucky Horse Racing Commission (KHRC) is gearing up to introduce administrative regulations for sports betting in Kentucky, bringing the long-awaited kickoff of this activity closer to reality. A special meeting will be convened in early July for the board to review and vote on these regulations.
Horse Tracks and Sportsbooks Forge Partnerships Ahead of Kentucky’s Sports Betting Debut
Although Kentucky’s sports betting law will officially go into effect on July 1, the KHRC has until the end of the year to establish the necessary regulations. However, obtaining approval in July would enable the state to capitalize on the start of the football season, making it an opportune time to mark Kentucky’s entry into the sports wagering marketplace, reported local news outlet WDRB.
Under the sports betting law passed by Kentucky legislators in March, the KHRC will have regulatory authority over sports betting in the state. Licenses will be granted to horse racing tracks, which will then partner with various vendors. This means that well-known online and app-based platforms like DraftKings, BetMGM, and FanDuel can operate in Kentucky only after reaching agreements with one of the horse tracks. In return, the horse tracks will receive a portion of the online wagering revenue.
Several horse tracks have already forged partnerships with prominent sportsbooks. In May, Keeneland and The Red Mile in Lexington announced their partnership with Caesars Sportsbook, while Churchill Downs has been working with FanDuel and DraftKings in different capacities.
Kentucky Aims to Implement Best Practices in Sports Betting
KHRC chairman Jonathan Rabinowitz revealed that KHRC representatives have engaged in discussions with regulators from several states, as well as Major League Baseball, to develop Kentucky’s rules and regulations. By learning from the experiences of other states that have recently introduced sports wagering, Kentucky hopes to implement best practices.
Additionally, meetings with service providers and visits to sportsbook sites have provided insights into the technologies employed to safeguard the integrity of wagering. The KHRC has also been in talks with stakeholders regarding problem gambling programs, taking inspiration from the program being developed in Ohio.
To assist in the process, KHRC has enlisted the services of Gaming Labs International, an external consulting firm, for support and training.
In anticipation of the launch of sports betting, KHRC has announced plans to create 14 new positions related to sports wagering, including investigative, analytical, and administrative roles. Rabinowitz conveyed his excitement, emphasizing that this is an incredibly thrilling period for the state. With the KHRC persistently working towards completing the regulations, residents of Kentucky are eagerly anticipating the chance to participate in sports betting, especially as the football season draws near.