As the first Saturday of May approaches, so too does the Greatest Two Minutes in Sports. All you horse racing fans out there know what that means: the 2019 Kentucky Derby makes its final approach this week to showcase the finest horses in the world as they compete for top honors.
The 145th running of the Kentucky Derby happens on Saturday, May 4th at the venerable Churchill Downs in Louisville, Kentucky. In addition to holding honors as the most prestigious race of the year, the Kentucky Derby also reigns supreme in terms of attracting wagers from fans around the world.
Bet on the Kentucky Derby Today at:
Last year’s Kentucky Derby set new betting handle records for the entire program and the race itself with more than $225 million bet over the course of the event. This figure includes wagers placed in-person at the track, at off-track betting parlors (OTBs) across the country and online through licensed betting sites.
That brings us to our main point today: wherever you live, the odds are you’re not far from a place to bet on the 2019 Kentucky Derby even if you’re nowhere near Churchill Downs and have no plans to make the trip. Almost every state in the Union has a legal betting site, OTB location or racetrack where bets on the Kentucky Derby are accepted.
Where to Bet on the Kentucky Derby Online
More than half of US states have at least one legal racing betting site that can be used to place Kentucky Derby wagers online. If you live in any of the following states, you can use these sites to place mobile/online wagers as long as you’re of legal age.
Below are our recommended racing betting sites along with a list of states accepted by each. For most of you reading this right now, online will be the most convenient method by far to bet on the 2019 Kentucky Derby.
It is important to note all of these sites are legal and licensed in the United States. We do not recommend offshore or quasi-legal betting sites. Each of the following sites is headquartered in the US and operates in compliance with all federal and state laws.
TVG is an established betting site founded by the TV channel of the same name dedicated to horse racing news, events and analysis. As a racing betting site, TVG.com offers all the same types of bets you would find in-person at the Kentucky Derby along with handicapping tools, a welcome bonus and live racing video.
- Welcome bonus: $20 sign up bonus plus 100% up to $100 added to your first deposit with bonus code WELCOME20.
- Visit: TVG.com
- See also: TVG Review
|Montana||New Hampshire||New Jersey (through sister site 4NJBets)||New Mexico|
|New York||North Dakota||Ohio||Oregon|
|Pennsylvania||Rhode Island||South Dakota||Tennessee|
BetAmerica was established in 2008 and is licensed to operate across a wide range of states. One way in particular that makes BetAmerica unique is its simple, no-nonsense approach to horse racing. Although BetAmerica offers a full range of wagers for every race, the interface is simple enough to make it easy for complete newbies. Meanwhile, experienced handicappers can take advantage of more sophisticated tools for research and to build advanced wagers.
- Welcome bonus: Get 100% up to $100 added to your first deposit.
- Visit: BetAmerica.com
- See also: BetAmerica Review
|New Mexico||New York||North Dakota||Ohio|
TwinSpires is the official betting site of the Kentucky Derby. In fact, it is owned by the same parent company of the race itself: Churchill Downs. Last year, TwinSpires alone took in nearly $40 million worth of online wagers.
- Welcome bonus: Get up to $100 extra for signing up for an account. Bonus paid in increments of $20 for every $100 wagered.
- Visit: TwinSpires.com
- See also: TwinSpires Review
|Massachusetts||Montana||New Hampshire||New York|
|Pennsylvania||Rhode Island||South Dakota||Tennessee|
Betting on the Kentucky Derby in Other States
The three betting sites detailed above cover 39 states of the Union. If you live in any of the eleven states in which online racing betting is not available, you may have other options depending on your location.
Below, we detail the closest Kentucky Derby betting location in each state. This will include OTB parlors, racetracks with simulcasting and occasionally the nearest location in a neighboring state.
We should also mention that when we speak of visiting to neighboring states, we will only be recommending states with physical betting locations. A neighboring state may have legal online racing betting, but that does not help unless you happen to be a resident of that state. All licensed betting sites require you to be a resident of one of their accepted states, not just there for the day.
We hate to be the bearer of bad news for our friends in Alaska, but your options for legal horse racing betting are nil at this point. Alaska does not have legal racing betting sites, OTBs or racetracks anywhere remotely within driving distance. The only way for Alaskans to bet on this year’s Kentucky Derby is to book a trip to the continental US.
Georgia outlaws horse racing betting across the board with zero OTBs, racetracks or licensed racing betting sites. If you want to bet on the 2019 Kentucky Derby, you’ll need to head next door to Florida or Alabama.
Hawaii is right up there with Alaska when it comes to lack of access to legal racing betting. Hawaii has no racetracks or OTB locations and a trip to the nearest state is a major journey. This is easily one of the three most restrictive states in the US when it comes to gambling in general.
Mississippi legalized sports betting last year and now all casino sportsbooks are allowed to accept parimutuel wagers on horse races. You can find a list of sportsbooks and locations on our Mississippi gambling information page here.
Missouri is a desert in term of horse racing with no legal racetracks and no access to licensed betting sites. State residents can head across the Mississippi River to Fairmount Park in Illinois for simulcast racing on the outskirts of St. Louis, Oaklawn Park in Arkansas, Prairie Meadows in central Iowa and Horseshoe Council Bluffs near Omaha.
Although Nebraska is short on racing betting sites, the state’s tracks do simulcast races from around the country. Horsemen’s Park, Lincoln Race Course and Fonner Park have all scheduled simulcasting events for the 2019 Kentucky Derby.
Nevada is quite protective of its land-based gaming industry and does not grant access to the major horse racing betting sites. However, the major casino sportsbooks will be hosting Kentucky Derby watch parties and will be taking wagers on races throughout the day.
Parimutuel wagering is prohibited in North Carolina so you’ll have to hit the road to place a bet on the Kentucky Derby. West Virginia has a handful of OTB locations such as Ponies and Pints (which has a Derby watch party), but there’s not much in the area as South Carolina also prohibits racing betting.
South Carolina is another tough spot for horse racing enthusiasts. Georgia to the south, North Carolina to the north and Tennessee to the west all prohibit parimutuel wagering.
Texas does not allow online racing betting, but a handful of tracks will let you bet on the Kentucky Derby with every race simulcast live on Saturday. The Race Barn in Fredericksburg, Lone Star Park in Grand Prairie and Sam Houston Race Park in Houston have all confirmed they will be hosting Kentucky Derby watch parties with wagering.
Utah has long opposed all forms of gambling and that includes parimutuel horse racing betting. The good news is you have a few options if you’re able to take a road trip across state lines.
Wyoming Downs and Evanston Horse Palace both offer simulcasting wagering just across the border in Wyoming while Las Vegas isn’t too terribly far if you’re down in the southwest corner of the state. Up north, you can head straight west to the William Hill Sportsbook at the Wendover Nugget for horse racing betting right on the Utah/Nevada border.