Kentucky sportsbooks took $340M in wagers during first two months

UK Kentucky Commonwealth Stadium
Image: Shutterstock / Susan M Hall

The Kentucky Horse Racing Commission released its first revenue report, giving some insight into how operators are faring in the Bluegrass State.

Across September and October, Kentucky sportsbooks took almost $341 million in bets at retail and online sportsbooks in the state.

For most of September, only retail wagering was available. Those books collected $9 million in bets, a number that dipped in October to $8.1 million.

On the online front, the handful of days online sports betting was live in September produced $36.8 million in bets. That number jumped tremendously during the first full month of operation. October’s handle amounted to $286.8 million.

As in most other states, FanDuel and DraftKings dominated the action. FanDuel generated $116 million in handle while DraftKings put up $109.5 million. Bet365 was a distant third with $28.6 million in bets. BetMGM and Caesars Sportsbooks were nearly even with $12.8 million in handle each. Fanatics posted $4.4 million in bets, with the dormant Barstool Sportsbook bringing up the rear with $2.7 million in wagers.

Bet365 also spent heavily on promotional dollars during the time period. FanDuel dropped the most promo credit at $27 million, while DraftKings was not too far behind with $23 million. Bet365 had $16.5 million in promotional spending, which amounted to more than twice the spending of all other operators.

With that promotional spending, bet365 also posted the highest hold of the month at 27.7%. Every operator did manage to put up double-digit hold, with an average of 18.4% across the state.

With combined handle of $341 million across the first two months, the state collects $7.9 million in taxes. That number amounts to one-third of what was projected for the entire year. If Kentucky sportsbooks can keep up this clip, they are in pace to surpass the projected $23 million in tax revenue from the gambling expansion.