Last updated on: June 11th, 2024

2024 States With Legal Horse Betting

All of the states with legal horse betting will attest to the fact that horse racing is big business in the USA. The history of horse racing in the US goes back centuries. But, modern-day horse betting became established towards the beginning of the 20th century. Kentucky formally legalized a pari-mutuel horse racing betting system in 1906. New York and Maryland shortly followed. Throughout the 1900s, more states jumped on board and we now have 40 different states with this form of legal horse betting. These states have had a profound economic impact. The Horse Racing Tracks industry market report found that US horse racetracks clear over $3 billion in revenue on average every year. Also, they employ over 16,000 people.

For the 2024 horse betting states, over $11 billion was bet. This number has steadily increased year over year. Before you start to bet on horse races, it is beneficial to know more about legal sports betting in your state. Most US bettors have several options for horse betting. These include horse racetracks, off-track betting (OTB) locations, and/or online racebooks. There are some differences between horse racing betting sites and those for sports betting. Stick around and we will give you a breakdown of what types of horse betting your state offers.

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States With Land Based Racebooks

More than half of all US states have active horse racetracks, and the majority offer at least some live racing schedules for patrons to enjoy the ponies. There may also be simulcast wagering where you can place wagers on an out-of-state horse race that’s taking place at another track. Here is a full list of the states with land-based legal horse racing betting:

*There are no physical horse racing tracks in the state, but there are OTB simulcast locations that allow live horse racing betting.

**The horse racing tracks in the state are temporary, only set up at certain county fairs. There are no permanent horse tracks in the state, but OTB simulcast locations are available.

What To Do If You Don’t Live In A State With Land-Based Horse Betting

With the popularity of horse betting, it’s hard to believe some states have no racetracks or OTB. But, every state accepts bets on horses from US players in some form. If you live in a state without land based horse betting, online betting is for you. When you bet on horses online, you get daily or weekly horse bet rebates on every wager placed. Legal betting sites are convenient with horse betting bonuses and more in the palm of your hand. It’s the best solution for horse racing bettors in a state without local tracks or betting.

Betting On Horses At Bovada

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Bovada is one of the best places to bet on horse racing as it provides several odds for all major and minor races. Whether you are looking to bet on the Triple Crown events or on smaller-scale races like the Florida Derby, there are odds available at Bovada. This site is great for those still learning how to bet on horse racing. Bovada is readily available in 45 states. With this, Bovada is one of the most used betting operations in the country for horse racing betting. In addition, their easy to use website and their excellent sports and horserace betting bonuses make them a great choice for any betting fan.

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Using BetOnline To Bet Horses In The US

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BetOnline Racebook

Accepts Bettors From 49 States

No matter where you are, BetOnline provides legal horse racing betting odds for all players. BetOnline provides odds for the Kentucky Derby, the Preakness Stakes, and the Belmont Stakes – the three biggest races of the year. Bettors can even wager on if a single horse will get the Triple Crown and win all three. BetOnline provides odds for each horse with options to wager on exact placements as well as head-to-head finishes for a pair of thoroughbreds. Their website is easy to browse on computers and mobile devices, and their futures odds are especially good. No matter where you are or how you wish to play, BetOnline is one of the best options for horse race betting fans.

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No Restrictions On Horse Race Betting At MyBookie

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MyBookie has several great betting lines surrounding horse racing betting events all year long. Many betting fans cash in and win big at MyBookie betting on major events such as the Kentucky Derby. There are odds available for all horses so bettors can wager on whoever they want to win, as well as odds for horses finishing in the top 3, top 5, and top 10. Players can even pin horses against one another and wager on who will place higher and there are options for betting on horses’ exact placements. The best option for horse race betting is at MyBookie.

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Betting On The Triple Crown In My State

You will be able to find racebooks that accept Triple Crown wagers whether you’re in the states with horse betting or not. This can take the form of betting live on the race in person or placing a future wager on the horse to finish first. No matter which path you choose, legal Triple Crown betting is one of the best horse race betting ideas. These are great for newbies learning how to bet on horse racing because of the sheer publicity of the races and horses. Some horse racing betting sites like Bovada even offer prop bets to win the Triple Crown.

Where is Sports Betting Legal?

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NFL Betting at BetOnline

What Is The Legal Horse Betting Age In My State?

The legal sports betting age varies by state but most accept all players over the age of 18. There will still be some exceptions of places that require you to be over the age of 21. For the most accurate information, make sure to check with the specific land based or online racebook that you plan on visiting.

States With Legal Online Horse Betting

There are many 2024 states with legal horse betting just like other gambling types. Horse racing betting generates more than $700 million in revenue each year (according to the state racing commission’s data). It will be hard to find a state with online sports betting that does not accept online wagers on horses. No land based betting destinations are necessary, as online racebooks can stand alone. Found below are all the states with horse racing betting sites in the US.

Alabama Arizona Arkansas
California Colorado Connecticut
Delaware Florida Idaho
Illinois Indiana Iowa
Kansas* Kentucky Louisiana
Maryland Massachusetts Michigan
Montana New Hampshire Nebraska
New Mexico New York North Dakota
Ohio Oklahoma Oregon
Pennsylvania Rhode Island South Dakota
Tennessee Vermont* Virginia
Washington West Virginia Wisconsin*
Wyoming

*This state has no horse tracks, no simulcast betting, and no OTB locations. However, interstate horse racing betting is legal over the Internet.

States That Have Banned Online Horse Betting

Not many states have banned online horse racing. But there are certain states that have not legalized interstate horse wagering. The Interstate Horse Racing Act legalizes the act of accepting horse wagers on races in the US. However, each state still has the right to decide if they want to permit the activity. Some states only allow horse racing betting on in state races. This could be through betting at horse tracks or OTB locations. There are no instances of US players receiving penalties for using mobile betting sites operated overseas. This is true even in states that do not offer a regulated market. The states that have not yet authorized interstate horse wagering are below:

Alaska Georgia Hawaii
Indiana* Maine* Minnesota*
Mississippi Missouri Nevada*
New Jersey* Oklahoma* South Carolina
Texas* Utah

*This state has horse tracks and has legal OTB and pari-mutuel wagering, but races you can bet on are restricted to in-state events only.

Note: Washington, DC, while not a state, has its own horse racing laws. Currently, there are no horse racing tracks in DC, nor are there any simulcasting or OTB venues, and horse racing betting itself is illegal.

Are Any More States Trying To Pass Horse Betting Legislation?

While the majority of US states have legal horse betting, there are still some looking to pass regulations at the state level. North Carolina was the most recent state to approve horse racing laws. In 2023, Governor Roy Cooper signed legislation that brought online North Carolina sports betting and horse race betting into possibilities.

  • Georgia has been trying to pass regulated gambling for years but came up short in 2023 again. SB57 focused more on sports betting but did include fixed odds horse wagering as well.
  • South Carolina also made efforts to make horse racing betting sites active in 2023. While House Bill 3541 made it to the SC Senate, horse betting is still not regulated.

Legal Horse Betting FAQs

Are online racebooks regulated and licensed?

Yes, licensed online racebooks are available in the US through state regulated and offshore forms. Online offshore horse racing sites accept the most US players. They also offer more bonuses and rebates than state regulated books. Bovada is one of the most trusted regulated racebooks taking US players.

So is betting horses online as safe as betting on them at my local track?

Yes, betting on horses online is a completely safe option when it comes to pari-mutuel wagering. You just have to make sure that you are using a reputable racebook before joining. There certain domestic websites such as TVG and Twin Spires to do the trick, but online offshore racebooks like MyBookie and Bovada are also safe and reliable options as well. 

If I live in one state, can I bet horses in another?

Yes, you can bet on horses and races happening in any state. Most states with legal horse betting also offer simulcast wagering with different tracks around the nation. Offshore racebooks offer the most horse betting options. With these, you can bet on races taking place in the US, the UK, and any other country. Online racebooks like Bovada give you access to all things horse betting from anywhere in the US.

Can I place the same wagers and get the same odds betting online as I would at the track?

Online racebooks have the same wager types that you would find at your local track. You can choose from Win, Place, or Show bets if you want to place straight wagers. Some of the exotic horse bets available include exactas, trifectas, superfectas, daily doubles, pick 3s, pick 6s, and much more. With such a variety, you’ll usually find more wager types per race online than on-site. That said, the odds are also formulated from a different pool than the ones at your local track, which means that the odds online will often be different for each horse compared to their published odds at their actual racetracks. Otherwise, the odds work exactly the same way, based on the pari-mutuel system (though house-banked odds types are also available at offshore racebooks).

Can I have more than one online racebook account?

You can have multiple online racebook accounts across different horse racing betting sites. You may find that one racebook has a wider variety of tracks, better bonuses, or higher rebates. In fact, we – along with other pro handicappers – recommend utilizing more than one account for shopping lines. Proper bankroll management is key when switching between online racebooks. That said, having more than one account at the same site is not permitted under any circumstances, and attempting to do this will result in permanent account suspension and full funds confiscation.

Has any state banned the use of mobile devices to place bets on horses?

State regulated race books will not always offer mobile betting. However, there are mobile betting sites accepting horse wagers from all US players. There are no states that have outright banned mobile horse betting, after all. Along with your smartphone, racebooks take wagers from tablets as well. Android and Apple users can all engage in legal horse race betting from their mobile devices. Keep in mind that not every racebook will have an app. For example, Bovada is only accessible from the browser on your preferred device.

If I live in a state that banned online horse betting, will I get in trouble for betting anyway?

The chance of you getting in trouble for betting on horses is slim to none in all US states. This includes states that have not yet legalized horse race betting at the state level. As long as your offshore racebook has a license you are free to bet on the ponies. There are not any recorded arrests of players betting on horses in any state. However, we still recommend following local laws in your area.

Why do online racebooks offer bonuses and other perks that my local track doesn’t?

Local horse betting tracks do not offer any big promotions because of how they operate. This does not mean you will never find any promos at your local track. But, you will not find any large deposit bonuses that Bovada and other online racebooks offer. Local tracks almost exclusively offer pari-mutuel betting. Whereas offshore books offer you the chance to bet against the house. With these sites, the house can offer deposit bonuses or rebates. With their current legal structure, land based horse tracks are not able to offer these types of bonuses. You can still be thoroughly entertained and win big at an on site race track. For bettors wanting the biggest promos, head over to Bovada or other mobile racebooks.

What kind of races are available to wager on at the online books?

Triple Crown races are the most popular and well known in the world of legal horse betting. You can wager on any of the three races up to six months in advance at Bovada. Additionally, you can wager on a horse winning the Tripple Crown. Online racebooks also take wagers on smaller events. You should be able to find odds on any local race or race outside of the US like the Bahrain International.

Are There Any Horse Betting Scam Sites To Worry About?

Many online racebooks are safe to use, although there are occasionally bad actors within their number. Some online racebooks are sketchier than others, with long times taken to provide the funds you earned on the sportsbook. However, there are a bevy of well regarded online racebooks, and those are the ones we recommend. You can check out our recommendations on this page. Just be sure to read reviews before signing up for a site.