Delaware North first to launch digital sports betting in W. Virginia


delaware-north-digital-sports-betting-west-virginiaWest Virginia’s sports bettors got a late Christmas present Thursday via the launch of two more retail sportsbooks and the state’s first online and mobile betting options.

On Thursday, hospitality and gaming operator Delaware North announced that its two West Virginia casinos — Wheeling Island Hotel-Casino-Racetrack and the Mardi Gras Casino & Resort – had officially launched their sportsbooks following a week of field testing and the approval of the West Virginia Lottery Commission.

Delaware North also announced the debut of its BetLucky website and mobile app (for both iOS and Android), marking the first digital wagering options since the state launched its legal betting market in August at Penn National Gaming’s Hollywood Casino at Charles Town Races. (For the moment, at least, the website appears intended purely to promote betting app downloads.)

From the start, Delaware North put a priority on a simultaneous digital-retail betting launch. The company had planned a November start but digital delays reportedly nixed that schedule. Regardless, the launch means that all five of the state’s gaming venues now include wagering among their gaming options.

BetLucky is powered by digital betting specialists Miomni Gaming, with whom Delaware North inked a tech deal in October that covers not only the company’s two West Virginia properties but also its gaming venues in five other US states, assuming the necessary legislation is enacted.

Luisa Woods, VP of marketing for Delaware North’s gaming division, said the company was confident that West Virginia punters would find the new digital platform “flexible, easy to use and reliable.” Woods added that the partnership with Miomni would also look to provide a turnkey sportsbook solution for other casino operators.

The FanDuel Group, which was second to launch wagering in the state at the Greenbrier Resort in September, has yet to launch its promised mobile app. Ditto for FanDuel’s archrival DraftKings, although that company only just announced its West Virginia betting partnership with Penn National Gaming this month.

The addition of mobile wagering will likely give West Virginia’s monthly sports betting figures a significant boost. In New Jersey, digital channels accounted for 72% of wagering handle in October.