Kentucky Finally Enters Digital Age With Online Sports Betting

Kentucky Finally Enters

Sports bettors in Kentucky are officially entering the digital age with the legalization of online sports betting. On June 28, 2023, the Kentucky sports gambling bill went into effect and became the 38th state to legalize sports betting in the US.

Three months later, the wait is over for sports betting enthusiasts. They can begin locking in their wagers at legal gambling establishments in the Bluegrass State.

Known as House Bill 551 in the Kentucky General Assembly, the Kentucky sports gambling bill enables bettors to wager on a wide array of sports. Just in time for football season, Kentucky gamblers can now bet at their favorite NFL betting sites.

KY Sports Betting Bill 2023

Let’s take a deep dive into the details of the enacted KY sports gambling bill, and how it impacts bettors throughout the state. There are several specifics of the Kentucky sports betting bill in 2023 that gamblers should be aware of before placing a wager.

When Is Sports Betting Legal in KY?

On March 31, 2023, Governor Andy Beshear signed House Bill 5511.

“Now, after years, of urging action, sports betting is legal in Kentucky. We finally did it! Today’s result shows that hard work pays off,” Gov. Beshear shared. “Kentuckians will soon be able to place their bets here, and for the first time, we are going to keep those dollars here to support our economy and communities.”

Two weeks earlier, the Kentucky sports betting bill passed in the General Assembly with a vote of 63-342. Requiring 25 votes, House Bill 551 passed in the Senate chamber by a vote of 25-123.

Despite House Bill 551 passing and signed by Gov. Beshear in March, bettors have had to be patient. It wasn’t until September that Kentucky online betting launched in the state.

On September 7, 2023, sports betting at brick-and-mortar locations were opened to the public. Gov. Beshear signaled the beginning of legal sports betting in Kentucky by making the first bet at the Churchill Downs Race & Sports Book4.

However, online sports bettors would have to wait until later in the month. On September 28, 2023, the Kentucky online gambling infrastructure was opened to residents of Kentucky.

Where Can You Bet On Sports In Kentucky?

Under the new Kentucky sports gambling bill, sports betting sites are legally allowed to accept wagers from customers. There are a number of betting apps that residents of Kentucky can use to place bets on their favorite teams.

Customers are able to bet on a wide range of wager types, including common bets like the point spread, moneyline, and the Over-Under in Kentucky. Furthermore, gamblers can bet on the winner of Super Bowl 58 and take advantage of prop betting in Kentucky.

Brick-and-Mortar Sports Betting Locations In Kentucky

In addition, the passing of House Bill 551 legalized sports betting in-person at land-based retail establishments. The language in the KY sports gambling bill permitted licenses to be awarded to horse racing tracks and at motorsport venue Kentucky Speedway.

With that in mind, gamblers can take in all the action at the Kentucky Derby, while betting on sports at the Churchill Downs Race & Sports Book. Churchill Downs isn’t the only racetrack embracing the Kentucky sports gambling bill.

As of October 2023, the following tracks have a license to accept sports bets in Kentucky:

Derby City GamingLouisville, KY
Ellis ParkHenderson, KY
Kentucky SpeedwaySparta, KY
Newport Racing & GamingNewport, KY
Oak Grove Racing Gaming & HotelOak Grove, KY
The Mint Gaming Hall CumberlandWilliamsburg, KY
The Mint Gaming Hall Cumberland RunCorbin, KY
The Red MileLexington, KY
Turfway Park Racing & GamingFlorence, KY

Kentucky’s lawmakers wanted to keep the legal sports betting age in line with other gambling products in the state, such as horse racing and lottery games. Therefore, the legal age for sports betting in Kentucky is 185.


That being said, private operators are allowed to set their own rules. Several online sports betting apps, including BetMGM, FanDuel, and Caesars Sportsbook, do not allow anyone under 21 to wager.

For 18 to 20-year-old gamblers, access our “where you can gamble at 18” page for more information relating to alternatives for young sports bettors.

Economic Impact of KY Sports Gambling Bill 2023

Government officials in Kentucky are optimistic that legal sports betting will be a windfall for the state. The race tracks and online sports betting operators will be responsible for paying an excise tax to Kentucky.

For wagers at licensed racetracks, a 9.75 percent excise tax on the adjusted gross revenue will apply. Conversely, online sports betting operators owe a 14.25 percent excise tax to the state.

According to Gov. Beshear, sports betting legalization should rake in roughly $23 million per year. In only two weeks since racetracks accepted bets, Beshear noted that over $4.5 million in wagers were made6.

The figures are expected to catapult once the numbers are in for mobile betting. If the number of users that registered for accounts is any indication, then officials in Kentucky have to be excited about what’s to come in the future.

According to GeoComply, there were over two million geolocation checks from roughly 200,000 accounts. The 200,000 accounts equate to 5.7 percent of Kentucky’s adult population7.

Certainly, the presence of legal sports betting in Kentucky brings hundreds of direct jobs and spin-off jobs to the region.

The Best Online Sports Betting Site In Kentucky

While we have not experienced the in-person retail sports betting experience in Kentucky yet, we have a plethora of experience with Kentucky’s authorized mobile betting sites.

From our perspective, BetUS has provided an unmatched online gambling experience. BetUS caters to recreational, professional, and bettors with all types of budgets. Through a variety of convenient cashier options, bettors can quickly deposit as low as $50 or up to $50,000 per transaction.

All new users at BetUS are eligible for a lucrative sign-up bonus to get started with free bets on the house. Currently, BetUS is offering a 100% welcome bonus of up to $2,500. For a limited time, the online sportsbook is also providing bettors with 30 risk-free bets.

As an extra freebie, BetUS is giving new users a 25% casino bonus of up to $625 on their first deposit. In total, you can get up to $3,125 on your first deposit at BetUS. If you want even more, consider depositing with cryptocurrency.

Deposit with crypto and receive a 150% sports welcome bonus of up to $3,750. The casino bonus is ramped up from $625 to a 50% welcome bonus of up to $1,250.

Once you’ve grabbed your free sports betting bonus, navigate through BetUS to find hundreds of unique bets. Whether you are interested in NFL betting, or a less commonly bet sport, the oddsmakers at BetUS have you covered.

Ready to play at BetUS?


  1. Gov. Beshear Signs Historic Legislation Legalizing Sports Betting | Retrieved From “,We%20finally%20did%20it!

  2. 23RS HB 551 | Kentucky General Assembly. Retrieved From “

  3. Sports gambling makes it across the finish line | Kentucky Lantern. Retrieved From “

  4. Kentucky Governor places first wager as sports betting becomes legalized across state | WLWT-TV. Retrieved From “

  5. HCS1 | Kentucky Legislature. Retrieved From “

  6. Mobile sports betting launches next in Kentucky | Spectrum News 1. Retrieved From “

  7. Kentucky’s Sports Betting Debut Sees 200,000 Active Accounts in 24 Hours | Business 2 Community. Retrieved From “

About the Author
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Kyle Eve
Sports/Casino Writer
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Kyle Eve is a seasoned pro of The Sports Geek. Since joining the team in 2012, Kyle, has covered some of the biggest sporting events in the world. From the Super Bowl and World Series to March Madness, the NBA Finals, Kentucky Derby, and many more, Kyle has provided reliable analysis for millions of readers. After dedicating himself to hockey and football in high school, Kyle placed his first sports bet on his 18th birthday. Since then, he has spent his entire adult life devoting himself to becoming the best sports bettor and casino gambler possible. Kyle is from Windsor, ON, Canada

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