Skip to main content

NY Senator Suggests Horse Racing to be Included in Mobile Betting Apps

The sports betting scene in New York is said to soon be expanded with the launch of several mobile applications. As a way to further expand the market, senator Joseph Addabbo suggested racetracks and several other venues to also be included in the soon-to-launch apps.

On Friday, the chair of the Senate Committee on Racing, Gaming, and Wagering filed Bill S7536 for the upcoming session in January. Provided the bill is passed, Thoroughbred and Harness racetracks will be included in the sports betting options covered by operators offering mobile betting in the state. As a part of the implementation of the new expansion of the betting industry in the Empire State, mobile betting was also included in the state’s budget for 2022.

Empire State to Soon Introduce Mobile Betting to Local Punters

Earlier this month, the New York State Gaming Commission (NYSGC) granted sports wagering licenses to eight sports betting platform providers. That will enable a total of nine operators to launch mobile betting in the state.

In a recent interview with, Addabbo commented on the current changes in the state’s betting scene. He added that being able to bet on the fifth race in Saratoga but being denied the option to place wagers via mobile apps does not make any sense. According to him, it is only natural to combine the two types of services and this is the next logical step towards expanding the state’s sports betting sector.

The bill proposed by Addabbo wants to include professional sports arenas, stadiums, and off-track betting parlors as affiliates of the newly launched mobile betting apps. If the bill is passed, this could also mean that the VLT operator at Queens’ Aqueducts Racecourse can offer kiosks. The said operator is Resorts World, with the bill acknowledging that it can offer mobile betting in the state of New York.

Sports Betting and Horse Racing Do Not Fall Under the Same Legal Definition

The regulator of New York has granted sports betting operating licenses to Resorts World, BetMGM, Caesars Sportsbook, PointsBet, FanDuel, Wynn Interactive, Bally BET, DraftKings, and Rush Street Interactive. Under the state law, these operators will need to offer their services through platform providers with servers based at a casino resort located in upstate New York.

While sports betting falls under the category of fixed-game, the state law has a different definition for horse racing. As the odds in that specific sports tend to fluctuate prior to the start of a race, these events fall under the category of pari-mutuel betting games. This is one of the reasons why implementing horse racing into the mobile betting apps in New York may not be as easy as one anticipates it to be.

There are several arguments that horse racing should also be considered a fixed-game proposition, with advocates of mobile horse racing betting ensuring that this could attract a much larger fan base of active punters. That said, horsemen could not agree with these suggestions, with their profit largely depending on the pari-mutuel takeout cut they take. If horse racing is considered a fixed-odds sport, there is a possibility of lower fixed-odds putting an end to the standard betting pools of horse racing.

 Author: Hannah Wallace

Hannah Wallace has been part of our team since the website was launched. She has a master’s degree in IT.