West Virginia Betting Sites

West Virginia sports betting sites have been live since 2018. It was one of the first US states to legalize online sports betting. But the developments for online gambling in the Mountain State did not stop there. In 2019, online sportsbooks launched in the state. As a result, West Virginia has one of the most expansive online betting markets in the US.

West Virginia moved quickly to legalize sports betting after the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act was lifted in 2018. The benefits are longer established sportsbooks, which can lead to better quality and options for bettors. Below, we look at what the Mountain State offers when it comes to online betting.

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Sports Betting in West Virginia

In late 2018, West Virginia betting sites launched and started accepting wagers. It was the fifth US state to legalize sports gambling, following some big players, like Nevada and New Jersey. The first legal sports bet was placed in late August 2018.

Although, in the early stages, only retail sports betting was offered to West Virginia bettors. Hollywood Casino at Charles Town Races was the first land-based gambling venue to take legal sports bets in the state. The Greenbrier and Mountaineer Casino was quick to follow, opening their in-person sportsbooks later in 2018.

After a small rush for the first three casinos to get their sportsbooks up and running, things slowed down in the Mountain State. It wasn’t until early 2020 that two more venues launched their retail sportsbooks. The Mardi Gras Casino and Wheeling Island became the fourth and fifth gambling establishments to provide sports betting services.

Online Sports Betting

In 2019, West Virginia sports betting sites started to launch in the state. As is standard in most other states, online betting companies had to pair with existing land-based casinos before launching.

Although online sports betting was permitted as early as 2018, it did not take off immediately. The rise and fall of BetLucky showed how issues with a rushed launch can cause issues without proper planning. The Delaware North brand initially opened its sports betting site in December 2018. However, issues with provider Miomni and a third-party vendor meant the sportsbook only lasted until 2019.

Wanting to learn from the mistakes of BetLucky, two of the big players in the sports gambling market took their time before launching in WV. FanDuel and DraftKings both started taking online bets in late August 2019. Then, BetMGM was quick to follow in January 2020.

Only a few more West Virginia online betting sites have launched since 2020. BetLucky had another go and re-launched as the Betly brand in mid-2020. Then, two more sportsbook giants came on the scene. Caesar’s and PointsBet both started taking sports bets online in 2021.

With only a handful of online betting sites in the Mountain State, it appears that quality over quantity is the focus here.

Horse Betting in West Virginia

West Virginia was one of the first states to create a horse racing commission in the 1930s. As a result, the Mountain state has a long-standing history when it comes to horse racing. In fact, horse racing is alive and well in West Virginia, despite a general downturn across the country.

Four racetracks are offering live racing across the state. Hollywood Casino at Charles Town Races is the largest racing venue with races taking place year-round. The venue also has the biggest casino in the state and it is partnered with DraftKings for online sports betting.

The Mountaineer Casino Racetrack & Resort is a smaller racing venue. Wheeling Island Hotel Casino Racetrack is the only dog-racing track in West Virginia. It is partnered with the Betly Sportsbook to provide online sports betting options.

Online Horse Betting

The state racetracks all offer pari-mutuel betting at their facilities. But, they do not all have the option of offering online versions of their product in the current licensing format.

Despite this, the legalization of West Virginia online betting sites has expanded online horse wagering opportunities. Some sportsbooks run odds for US-wide races, while some also have bets for international horse racing.

Casino Gambling in West Virginia

The racetracks in West Virginia were given the right to offer casino games at their properties as an alternative source of income. This has been a lifeline to these tracks in recent decades. The declining horse racing revenue was impacting their ability to operate.

The four tracks in the state all have accompanying casinos. The only out and out land-based casino is the Greenbrier Casino Club. However, this is a private members casino.

Online Casinos in West Virginia

After the rise of West Virginia sports betting sites, an expansion bill in 2019 legalized online poker and casino games. The extension meant the five casinos could partner with online operators to offer online casino games. These include poker, table games, and slots.

Despite the extension going through in 2019, the first online casino site did not launch until mid-2020. DraftKings Casino was the first to go live after it formed a partnership with Charles Town Races.

Since then, more big names have come to West Virginia to set up their online casino sites. Now, Caesar’s, BetRivers, and Fanduel are also part of the online casino scene in the Mountain State. More platforms are expected to launch soon, with Golden Nugget Casino, PointsBet Casino, and WynnBet Casino looking likely to set up operations.

Lottery in West Virginia

The West Virginia Lottery is a full-scale lottery, offering draw games on a daily basis for residents of the state. Hundreds of millions of dollars can be won in games like Powerball which pools players from all over the United States.
Lottery retailers also offer scratch tickets which can offer maximum tickets up to $25 apiece. Players can also get chances to win instant prizes on scratch cards.

Like most US states that run a lottery, all proceeds from the lottery help to fund social programs in the state. These include education services, infrastructure, and social improvement causes.

West Virginia sports betting FAQ

Is sports betting legal in West Virginia?
Yes. West Virginia was one of the first states to adopt sports betting legislation after the repeal of PASPA. The first legal sports bet was may on August 30th, 2018. Since the legalization of sports betting, more retail and online sportsbooks have set up shop in the Mountain State.
What is the best West Virginia sports betting site?
Choosing the right West Virginia sports betting site takes some research to get right. Individual preference plays a key part and bettors look for different features. However, for impartial, well-researched, and clear overviews, check out our bookmaker reviews. This is a good starting point for any new WV bettor.
How do I place a wager at West Virginia sportsbooks?
West Virginia bettors have two options. Firstly, they head to a retail sportsbook and select their wager in person. Alternatively, they download a sportsbook app or sign up with a bookmaker online. Once a WV resident has an online betting account, they can deposit funds and place bets. However, strict security and identity checks are in place via online bookmakers. Players must be 21 or over to sign up and bet online.
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