DOVER, Del. — NASCAR is creating its first big play in the realm of expanded legal sports betting, trusting a sports data venture will cause gamblers having the ability to wager during races on much greater than just who gets the checkered flag.
Professional Sports has become the exclusive supplier of NASCAR data to licensed sportsbooks, officials announced Friday.
“NASCAR is just one of the sports that I believe has an great opportunity to present an intriguing gambling product, particularly in-game,” said Genius spokesman Chris Dougan.
Professional Sports will develop a formal NASCAR gambling offering for legal sportsbooks, utilizing NASCAR’s official data feed.
The exclusive deal lets Genius Sports assist books provide up-to-the-minute odds and a ton of conventional wagers and prop bets.
“We feel that NASCAR has a bit more of an upside in the in-race event experience than a number of the other stick-and-ball sports,” said Brian Herbst, senior vice president of broadcasting and innovation for NASCAR. “The in-game encounter that we’re building through Genius will possess live odds around NASCAR.”
So a bettor could watch odds on their chosen driver differ through the race before choosing to place a bet. NASCAR hopes that will keep fans interested (Fox Sports has averaged 5.14 million viewers this season) in watching for the duration of a race.
“What could happen in the next five seconds? What could happen within the lap? It opens the door to some massively exciting new marketplace,” Dougan said. “NASCAR is now beginning to recognize this is a massive fan engagement instrument. We provide them that supply and that reach.”
Herbst stated it should take six to eight months for the technology to come together for in-race betting, resulting in live race chances by the 2020 season.
Before the start of this 2019 year, NASCAR developed an ethics program and gaming policy in which the sanctioning body granted all teams and tracks the capability to sell promotion sponsorships to sports betting companies and accredited sportsbooks.
Among the restrictions: drivers and staff members are prohibited from gambling on races or disclosing personal details. They are permitted to participate in fantasy sports relating to both national touring series, Cup, Xfinity and Truck, but might not accept awards with a value of more than $250 in any games. The bans are based on other significant sports.
Soccer, baseball and basketball generate the bulk of sports gambling in the USA and NASCAR has yet to ignite interest among the masses. Despite less stock than other popular sport, NASCAR’s movement is an effort to carve out a sliver of a market with countless bet each year.
Vernon Kirk, manager of the Delaware lottery, said since full-scale sports gambling started in Delaware on June 5, 2018, about one-tenth of 1 percent has been wagered on auto racing ($208,100 out of $154.8 million), through April 28.
“I really don’t think we’ve done a excellent job of taking the tools that our tool kit and minding those,” Herbst said. “We were not really in the gaming conversation until this season. We’re still carrying a sort of pragmatic, staggered approach into it.”
Nevada’s effective monopoly on sports gambling ended last spring, when the Supreme Court ruled the ban should be lifted. Casinos in seven different states — Rhode Island, Delaware, Mississippi, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, West Virginia and New Mexico — currently accept wagers on sports. The listing is expected to rise by following year with numerous states considering bills.
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