The countdown to legal sports betting in Kentucky is winding down. Retail sports wagering will go live on Sept. 7, in time for the kickoff of the NFL season. However, Kentucky sports betting apps won't be ready for launch until Sept. 28.
Some of our best sports betting apps are already allowing customers to pre-register so that they are ready to roll at 6 a.m. ET on Sept. 28. It gives bettors in the state a chance to create an account rather than scramble on the day of. They can also take advantage of a number of welcome bonuses.
“Allowing pre-registration eases strains on electronic systems that can sometimes happen when many people try to register at once," a press release from the governor's office read.
Confirmed Kentucky sportsbooks
The Kentucky Horse Racing Commission has been busy vetting the best Kentucky sportsbooks in preparation for the launch. Legal sports betting was passed into law in the Bluegrass State on June 28.
So far, the commission has approved eight online providers to go live in the state when mobile is launched, with as many as 19 more to go. The lucky applicants include:
The racetracks that mobile providers are mandated to partner with include:
- Churchill Downs in Louisville
- Ellis Park in Henderson
- The Red Mile in Lexington
- Derby City Gaming in Louisville
- The Mint Gaming Hall Cumberland Run in Corbin
- Newport Racing and Gaming in Newport
- Oak Grove Gaming and Racing in Oak Grove
- Turfway Park in Florence
Three pre-launch offers went live Aug. 28
Three major sportsbooks were quick out of the gate in providing pre-registration opportunities for clients in the Bluegrass State. Prospective bettors in Kentucky will need to be 18 years of age or older (which differs from most states, which require clients to be 21 years or older).
Pre-registration opportunities generally provide good value for sports bettors in a given state. In all cases, the value is better than if bettors wait until official launch.
Bonus bets and no deposit requirements are examples of what the three sportsbooks that launched pre-registration are offering new users, ahead of launch - two of which require no bonus code.
To no surprise, the two biggest legal sports betting providers in the country are among the three that have opened their pre-registration window.
The three sportsbooks that are giving users a chance to pre-register for Kentucky bonuses include:
- FanDuel: No code needed. Customers will get $100 in bonus bets, plus $100 off NFL Sunday Ticket when they sign up prior to their official Sept. 28 launch.
- DraftKings: No code needed. DraftKings requires no deposit in order to "get $200 bonus bets" simply for signing up for their sports betting brand.
- bet365: Bonus code required. Bettors in the state are eligible for a "bet $1, get $365 in bonus bets, plus up to $50 extra ($10 per touchdown in Packers-Lions on Sept. 28, up to five TDs)" offer when they sign up for the bet365 brand.
There is still roughly one month for Kentucky's best sports betting sites to register new bettors, prior to the Sept. 28 launch. It means more value for Bluegrass State sports bettors and more choices to take advantage of.
As mentioned, pre-launch offers generally provide more value than ones that come after sportsbooks go live in a prospective state. They also give bettors a chance to get their ducks in a row early, so they can take advantage of what figures to be a solid sports betting industry in America's 37th legal sports betting state.