Kentucky Sportsbooks: Best Legal Sportsbooks in 2024

Last Updated: May 9, 2024
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Fact Checked By: Anthony Cervino

Now that sports betting is legal in Kentucky, it's a great time to check out some special bonus deals on the top Kentucky sportsbooks. These exciting welcome offers come with bonus bets that can boost your sports betting funds right from your first wager. Don't miss these generous welcome deals – you can join them today on Kentucky's finest sports betting platforms.

You can grab these extra bets and use them to bet on popular local teams like the Kentucky Wildcats and Louisville Cardinals. You can even use these welcome offers to bet on NFL odds like NFL player props. Sign up now, make big bets, and have a chance to win on the best online sports betting sites.

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Kentucky has always been a haven for horse racing, with famous tracks like Churchill Downs, Ellis Park, and Keeneland. Having such a great relationship with horse racing, it seemed like a matter of time before sports betting would become legalized in the Bluegrass State.

On March 31, 2023, Gov. Andy Beshear signed HB 551 -- the Kentucky sports betting bill -- into law. This made sports betting apps legal in Kentucky. Now, Kentucky sportsbooks await their official licenses as well as the rules and regulations from the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission, which will oversee legal sports betting in Kentucky.

This Kentucky sports betting guide has everything you need to know about online sports betting in Kentucky, including how to sign up for Kentucky sportsbooks, the best sports betting markets, and lots of other Kentucky sports betting FAQs.

KENTUCKY SPORTS BETTING SITEON-SITE PARTNERLAUNCH STATUS
✅ BetMGM SportsbookSandy's Racing & GamingConfirmed in Kentucky
✅ Caesars SportsbookRed Mile RacingConfirmed in Kentucky
✅ FanDuelTurfway Park / NewportConfirmed in Kentucky
✅ DraftKingsCumberland RunConfirmed in Kentucky
✅ Circa SportsCumberland RunConfirmed in Kentucky
✅ bet365Sandy's Racing & GamingConfirmed in Kentucky
✅ ESPN BET (PENN Entertainment - formerly Barstool)Ellis Park Racing & GamingConfirmed in Kentucky
✅ Fanatics SportsbookOak Grove Racing/Gaming/HotelConfirmed in Kentucky
🟡 betrTBDComing Soon to Kentucky
🟡 TipicoTBDComing Soon to Kentucky
🔮 PointsBetTBDTBD
🔮 BetRiversTBDTBD
🔮 Hard Rock SportsbookTBDTBD
🔮 BetwayTBDTBD

Now that sports betting has gone live in the Bluegrass State, we want to make sure that you're prepared to bet smartly on the top Kentucky sports betting sites. One of the best ways to bet smart is by betting with house money, which is also called bonus bets that you can get your hands on by claiming the top Kentucky sportsbook promos now. 

List Of The Best Legal Kentucky Sportsbooks

Best Kentucky Sportsbooks

The best legal Kentucky sportsbooks will include the usual suspects.

BetMGM Kentucky, Caesars Sportsbook Kentucky, and FanDuel Sportsbook Kentucky are sure to be market leaders, along with other players like DraftKings Sportsbook Kentucky, Bet365 Kentucky, and ESPN BET Kentucky. 

Below is a list of the best legal Kentucky sportsbooks, along with their corresponding welcome offers that new users can take advantage of.

A List Of The Best Kentucky Sportsbooks

  • BetMGM Kentucky
  • Caesars Kentucky
  • DraftKings Kentucky
  • FanDuel Kentucky
  • Bet365 Kentucky
  • ESPN Bet Kentucky

Click on the "BET NOW" button to sign up for any of these top sportsbooks so you can take advantage of these generous welcome offers so yu can bet big. 

The Current Kentucky Sports Betting Landscape

Kentucky sports betting, including Kentucky betting sites and top sportsbooks, are finally legal to operate. We will go over how legal Kentucky sports betting got to where we stand today from the Kentucky Legislature to the Kentucky sports betting bill and what's next for the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission to send online sports betting in Kentucky live.

Where Does Kentucky Stand On Legal Sports Betting?

Several Kentucky sports betting bills were proposed in recent years in an effort to bring legal sports betting to Kentucky. Starting in 2020, there were multiple attempts to make sports betting legal in Kentucky. Finally, in March 2023, House Bill 551 was signed as the new Kentucky sports betting law, making online sports betting legal in Kentucky.

As we await the legal Kentucky sports betting launch at some point later in 2023, here are the most notable legislative efforts that got sports betting in Kentucky to where we stand today.

House Bill 137 (2020)

This Kentucky sports betting bill, sponsored by Representative Adam Koenig, aimed to legalize online sports betting and daily fantasy sports, while also imposing a tax on sports betting revenue in the Bluegrass State. The bill received initial support, but failed to pass during legislative session.

House Bill 241 (2021)

A similar Kentucky sports betting bill to HB 137, sponsored by the same representative, House Bill 241 met the same fate in 2021. Despite receiving support from some Kentucky lawmakers, HB 241 failed to advance through the House vote.

House Bill 610 (2022)

In 2022, House Bill 610 sought to legalize sports betting once more in Kentucky. The proposed legislation included online sportsbooks and in-person wagering provisions, a licensing framework, and a taxation system. HB 610 was ultimately voted down.

House Bill 551 (2023)

House Bill 551 is the most recent Kentucky sports betting bill. After passing in the Kentucky House of Representatives, 63-34, and the Kentucky Senate, 25-12, HB 551 was signed into law by Gov. Andy Beshear on March 31, 2023, making sports betting legal in Kentucky.

When Did Kentucky Sports Betting Launch In 2024?

Since online sports betting launched in Kentucky on September 28th, let's reflect on the journey to its legalization. The path to legal sports betting in Kentucky has been extensive, especially after the Supreme Court's decision to overturn PASPA in 2018.

Here is a timeline of how Kentucky sports betting became legalized in the Bluegrass State.

Kentucky Sports Betting Timeline

  • November 14, 2023: ESPN BET launches in 17 states including Kentucky. 
  • October 2, 2023: On September 28, 2023, it was announced that seven Kentucky sports betting app launched statewide on September 28. These apps include DraftKings, bet365, FanDuel, Caesars, BetMGM, Barstool, and Fanatics, providing a range of options for sports betting enthusiasts in the state.
  • September 28, 2023: Legal Kentucky sports betting goes live in the Bluegrass State. 
  • August 28, 2023: Pre-registration has been initiated for the eight authorized Kentucky sports betting sites. From 6 a.m. ET onwards, bettors are able to sign up using their preferred app.
  • August 3, 2023: The CEO of Churchill Downs Inc., the company that owns the Kentucky Derby, revealed their intention to inaugurate retail sportsbooks at the venue on September 7, 2023, aligning with the commencement of sports betting in Kentucky.
  • July 17, 2023: On July 17, 2023, Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear took a significant step towards the legalization and regulation of sports betting in the state. By signing an executive order, Gov. Beshear established a Sports Wagering Advisory Council, tasked with providing guidance and recommendations regarding the regulation and oversight of both retail and online sports betting in Kentucky. This advisory council will play a crucial role in shaping the future of sports betting in the state, ensuring that it operates in a safe and responsible manner. 
  • June 23, 2023: On June 28, Kentucky's sports betting law will come into effect, paving the way for sportsbooks to operate in the state. These sportsbooks will have a six-month timeframe to establish their operations and be ready to serve bettors. This marks an exciting milestone for sports betting enthusiasts in Kentucky, who can look forward to enjoying legal sports wagering in the near future. 
  • May 16, 2023: Caesars Sportsbook announced that it is limiting its legal sports betting age to 21 years old, even though the legal sports betting age is 18 in Kentucky.
  • April 18, 2023: Kentucky Horse Racing Commission meets to discuss sports betting regulations. The hope is for Kentucky online sportsbooks to launch within six months.
  • March 31, 2023: Gov. Beshear signs House Bill 551 into law, making online sports betting legal in Kentucky. The sports betting launch is expected at some point later in 2023.
  • March 30, 2023: HB 551 approved in Kentucky Senate (25-12), awaits Gov. Beshear's signature.
  • March 29, 2023: DraftKings introduces DK Horse App in Kentucky before the Kentucky Derby.
  • March 13, 2023: Kentucky House passes House Bill 551 (63-34). HB 551 is sent to the Kentucky Senate for vote.
  • March 8, 2023: Kentucky Licensing and Occupations Committee approves HB 551.
  • Feb. 22, 2023: Rep. Michael Meredith files sports betting bill HB 551.
  • Jan. 6, 2023: Lawmakers revisit Kentucky sports betting legislation.
  • July 19, 2022: Caesars Racebook enters Kentucky as its sixth state.
  • April 14, 2022: Kentucky Senate does not pass HB 606.
  • March 29, 2022: HB 606 is considered a "longshot" by Sen. Damon Thayer.
  • March 18, 2022: House passes HB 606 (58-30), proceeds to Senate.
  • March 16, 2022: House Committee approves HB 606.
  • Feb. 28, 2022: Rep. Adam Koenig introduces sports betting bill HB 606.
  • Feb. 23, 2022: Senator David Yates presents SB 213, which includes both sports betting and online poker.
  • Feb. 10, 2022: Survey shows 65% of Kentuckians support legal sports betting.
  • Jan. 9, 2021: House Bill 241 is introduced, targeting sports betting legalization in Kentucky.
  • Jan. 7, 2020: House Bill 137 was introduced as the first sports betting bill in Kentucky. It failed to pass in the House.
  • May 14, 2018: Supreme Court abolishes PASPA, enabling U.S. states to regulate sports betting.

Key Players In The Kentucky Sports Betting Arena

Horse racing reigns supreme in Kentucky, which made Kentucky sports gambling a logical next step for KY sports betting. Since the Bluegrass State already has a booming horse racing business, lawmakers and legislators knew there was an appetite for Kentucky online sports betting. With the legal betting age of 18 for both horse racing and the Kentucky Lottery, adding Kentucky sportsbooks to the mix is a great addition for Kentucky sports fans in the future.

Predicting The Future of Kentucky Sports Betting

It was just a matter of time before sports betting was legalized in Kentucky, considering nearly every surrounding U.S. state is already up and running with online sportsbooks. The most recent sports betting domino was Ohio, with bordering Indiana, Illinois, Tennessee, Virginia, and West Virginia having launched legal sports betting previously.

Kentucky sports betting is sure to get plenty of interest from college sports fans, specifically the University of Kentucky and Louisville University. College basketball is likely the sport that will bring Wildcats and Cardinals fans to the top sportsbooks more than any other sports betting market.

How To Make A Deposit With A Legal Kentucky Sportsbook

There are many ways to make a deposit with a legal Kentucky sportsbook. The steps below provide a step-by-step guide on how to make a deposit and get started once online sports betting in Kentucky launches.

  • Step 1: Click on the "BET NOW" button for the Kentucky sportsbook you would like to sign up for.
  • Step 2: Go through the necessary registration forms and enter your personal identifying information (name, address, phone number, DOB, last four of SSN, etc).
  • Step 3: Input the promo code or bonus code connected to the Kentucky sports betting site.
  • Step 4: Make a qualifying initial deposit using a credit card, debit card, PayPal, online banking, or any other applicable deposit method.
  • Step 5: Once your account is funded, place your first legal sports bet in Kentucky.

Now that Kentucky has legal sports betting, you don't have to deal with shady offshore sportsbooks or going to a neighboring state to place sports bets. Feel confident in knowing that Kentucky sportsbooks will have the most reliable deposit options to fund your new sports betting account.

What Sports Can I Bet On In Kentucky?

Kentucky sports fans can bet on an array of sports at Kentucky online sportsbooks.

While each U.S. state has different laws, Kentucky sports betting sites will feature NFL, NBA, MLB, and NHL betting as well as college sports betting options, to name a few.

Below are the most common sports betting markets that yu can bet on now that legal sports betting is live in the Bluegrass State. 

NFL Betting With Kentucky Sportsbooks

NFL betting with Kentucky sportsbooks is going to be king, as it is with every other U.S. state. There are plenty of NFL odds markets to wager on, including moneylines, spreads, and totals. In addition to those more traditional bet types, Kentucky bettors will be able to place parlays, teasers, and NFL player prop bets as well.

Local NFL teams like the Cincinnati Bengals and Indianapolis Colts are likely to take in most of the NFL bets from Kentucky sports bettors, including player futures like NFL MVP wagers on Joe Burrow and Offensive Rookie of the Year bets on Anthony Richardson.

NBA Betting In Kentucky

NBA betting in Kentucky will likely garner plenty of interest as well, as it is the second most bet on sport in the United States. Just like the NFL, Kentucky online sportsbooks will have all of the basic bet types. NBA player props are very popular, as are NBA futures.

NBA teams in neighboring states, like the Indiana Pacers and Memphis Grizzlies, will certainly be bet on early and often by Kentucky bettors, once the official sports betting launch date is announced.

MLB Betting With Kentucky Sportsbooks

MLB betting with Kentucky sportsbooks should be a big hit (pun intended). The MLB odds available in the Bluegrass State will include the most common bet types, with MLB player props being a go-to betting market for Kentucky sports bettors. Lots of Cincinnati Reds and St. Louis Cardinals fans reside in Kentucky, with World Series odds and MLB futures being top MLB betting options for those teams.

NHL Betting in Kentucky

NHL betting in Kentucky is another top sports betting market, despite the Columbus Blue Jackets and Nashville Predators being the closest in proximity to the Bluegrass State. Stanley Cup odds are always one of the most bet NHL odds with moneylines, puck lines, and over/under totals also being wagered on every night throughout the NHL season.

Addressing The College Sports Betting Debate

It may be a polarizing topic, but the college sports betting debate is certainly something that comes up whenever a new legal sports betting market launches. That is obviously the case with sports betting in Kentucky, which allows for bets on all college sports betting markets.

Some states, like New Jersey, New York, and Massachusetts, don't allow for wagers on games involving in-state schools, while others, like Pennsylvania and Iowa, have restrictions on college sports prop bets.

This is a very interesting debate, specifically in Kentucky, as the legal sports betting age is 18. Legislators often say that sports betting in college games could compromise the integrity of it, but that's yet to be proven. When the Kentucky sports betting bill was signed, it included no restrictions on college sports betting so rest assured that Kentucky bettors can wager on Kentucky and Louisville college games once Kentucky sports betting sites go live.

Final Take On Kentucky Sports Betting In 2024

Kentucky sports betting in 2023 is set to be a big-time event. Kentucky sportsbooks are set to thrive and hit the ground running now that legal sports betting in the Bluegrass State is live, and Kentucky sports bettors now have a wide range of online sportsbooks to choose from. Each of these Kentucky online sportsbooks also has generous welcome offers that you can claim by signing up via the sportsbook promo code links on this page.

Kentucky Sportsbooks FAQ

What sportsbooks are legal in Kentucky?

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The sportsbooks that are legal in Kentucky have yet to be determined. However, all of the top online sports betting sites are expected to launch in Kentucky in late 2023. The most likely Kentucky sportsbooks as BetMGM Kentucky, Caesars Sportsbook Kentucky, DraftKings Sportsbook Kentucky, FanDuel Kentucky, WynnBET Kentucky, Bet365 Kentucky, BetRivers Kentucky, and Barstool Sportsbook Kentucky. Once these legal sportsbooks go live, you'll be able to sign up and start sports betting in Kentucky.

Is sports betting legal in Kentucky yet?

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Yes, sports betting is legal in Kentucky, but Kentucky bettors cannot place wagers until the KY sportsbooks launch at some point in 2023. The Kentucky Horse Racing Commission still need to finalize the rules and regulations and issue sports betting licenses to the Kentucky betting sites.

What are the best sports betting sites for Kentucky?

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The best sports betting sites for Kentucky include all those highlighted on this Kentucky sportsbooks page. The two sports betting sites we've ranked the best are BetMGM Kentucky and Caesars Sportsbook Kentucky. The best Kentucky sports betting sites will be available as of the Kentucky sports betting launch later this year.

Which mobile sportsbooks are available in Kentucky?

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The top mobile sportsbooks that are available to sign up for in Kentucky include all those mentioned in this Kentucky sports betting review. They include BetMGM Kentucky, Caesars Sportsbook Kentucky, DraftKings Kentucky, FanDuel Kentucky, and BetRivers Kentucky. Kentucky sports bettors can sign up for these mobile sportsbooks while claiming generous welcome offers in one fell swoop. 

What is the legal gambling age in Kentucky?

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The legal Kentucky sports gambling age is 18 years old. You can currently take part in the Kentucky Lottery and bet on horse racing at the age of 18 as well. According to Kentucky sports betting law, once Kentucky sports betting sites launch, you can sign up once you've turned 18 years old. However, it is important to note that on May 16, 2023, Caesars Kentucky Sportsbook announced that it will limit its sports betting age to 21 years old, despite the fact that the legal Kentucky sports betting age is 18.

Can I deposit to a Kentucky sportsbook site with a credit card?

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Yes, you can deposit to a Kentucky sportsbook sitess with a credit card, once legal Kentucky sports betting sites go live. Most credit cards, including Visa, Mastercard, and American Express, are available for online sportsbook users to deposit funds. If you do not have a credit card, Kentucky sportsbooks also accept PayPal, online banking, and other forms of payment.

Can I claim a Kentucky sports betting bonus now?

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Now that sports betting is live in the Bluegrass State, you can claim Kentucky sports betting bonuses now. For example, you can sign up with the BetMGM Kentucky bonus code ROTOFB200 to get $200 in bonus bets with a $10 first bet. 

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Alan Walsh
Alan has worked in numerous writing roles in the DFS/sports industry, including positions with the New York Knicks, FanDuel, and Caesars Sportsbook. He played hockey in juniors and in college but is now currently trying to improve upon his 16-handicap on the golf course.
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