- Tioga Downs was originally approved to offer sports betting via voter referendum in 2013.
- Tioga Downs hosts famous harness stake races such as Empire Breeders Classic and the New York Sire Stakes.
- The sportsbook at Tioga Downs will be operated by FanDuel.
NICHOLS, N.Y. – Sports fans in upstate New York and Northern Pennsylvania will surely be racing to Tioga Downs Casino Resort later this summer. With renovations for a new sportsbook all but wrapped up, the only hurdle left to accept sports wagers is an official license from the New York State Gaming Commission (NYSGC).
Tioga Downs has been waiting to offer legal sports betting for quite some time now, having received approval through a voter referendum in 2013. However, it wasn’t until March of 2019 that Tioga Downs officially began constructing their new sports betting area in anticipation of regulatory changes.
During March the NYGC was able to approve the casino’s request to lower their number of slot machines and table games. Tioga Downs slot machine requirement dropped from 942 to 892 and lowered its number of table games from 36 to 34.
“We had more slots and tables than we needed, but needed space to provide for sports betting,” said Jeff Gural, owner of Tioga Downs to the Democrat & Chronicle.
The new sportsbook will be provided by daily fantasy sports company and sports gambling provider, FanDuel. The types of bets and the regulations that the casino and sports gambling provider will have to abide by were finalized by the NYGC last week.
Those regulations will now have to be published in the State Register, which is expected to happen next week. Once that happens, the Commission will be able to start awarding licenses to Tioga Downs and three other casinos that were approved by voters in 2013.
Jim Weed, Marketing Manager for Tioga Downs Casino Resort, spoke on the timeline of the sportsbook launch. Even with the NCAA Tournament and NBA Finals in the rearview, the grand opening is still highly anticipated.
“There’s not a lot of wagering in summer sports,” said Weed. “We missed the tail end of basketball but we’re excited for football and the fall with that.”
The sports betting area will be similar to what sports bettors are accustomed to at any large retail sportsbook. There is a large video wall filled with flat-screen TVs broadcasting all the latest sports matches, continuously updated odds boards, and friendly sportsbook writers ready take in wagers.
“We’re just looking forward to seeing potentially some new faces and some new excitement on the property,” said Weed.
What Else Does Tioga Downs Offer?
Those who have been to Tioga Downs know that betting opportunities have been there for some time. Pari-mutual wagering and simulcast betting on horse races are a staple attraction for Tioga Downs.
Simulcast betting is available for both Harness and Thoroughbred racing. If you want to watch Harness races live you can as well because the track offers some of the biggest events in the sport. The New York Sire Stakes and Empire Breeders Classic are among some of the many events on display during the Summer.
Tioga Downs Golf Club is also another amenity offered for people who want to play a sport before or after they bet on sports. For those that want to stick to gambling, there are also hundreds of slot machines, dozens of table games, and six poker tables to choose from.
There are also ten different dining options and entertainment events happening all year round. With so much to do you may want to book a hotel reservation so that you can enjoy every amenity during your stay. Once football season returns you be able to bet on the games all weekend at Tioga Downs Casino Resort.
– In his career, Hasan has worked both local and state government positions—including the Attorney General’s Office in Florida. On top of being familiar with the legislative process, he has also been researching and writing on the legality of sports betting across the US. Outside of work you’ll most likely find him producing or playing music, playing sports, or working on creative writing projects. You’ll also catch him at Doak Campbell Stadium cheering on the Noles.