Pennsylvania is launching iLottery,online casino,sports betting

Will Second Area Sportsbook Opening Cause A Valley Forge Turf War?

Valley Forge Turf Club launch

The Valley Forge Turf Club (VFTC) opened its sportsbook to the public on Mar. 12. In doing so, the off-track betting parlor became the eighth location to accept wagers on sporting events in Pennsylvania.

The debut is the second sportsbook to launch at a Pennsylvania off-track facility. The launch makes VFTC the third sportsbook active under the Greenwood Gaming banner, joining Parx and South Philadelphia Turf Club.

“Greenwood Racing, Inc. is thrilled to launch sports betting in the heart of Montgomery County at Valley Forge Race & Sportsbook,” said Matthew Cullen, Senior VP of Interactive Gaming and Sports, in a statement. “We now offer sports betting and ultimate sports viewing in three different counties – and we aren’t done yet.”

The Oaks-area facility opened for four hours on Tuesday and Wednesday for two days of testing supervised by the PA Gaming Control Board (PGCB). The sportsbook officially opens on Thursday, Mar. 14.

To be clear, this debut is at the Valley Forge Turf Club, not Valley Forge Casino. Valley Forge Casino launched its own sportsbook earlier this week.

Valley Forge Turf Club sportsbook details

Valley Forge Turf Club opened in 1996 to serve patrons northwest of Philadelphia. The club includes 26,000 square feet of gaming space, a restaurant with seating for more than 100 people, and three other food venues.

The facility also features a “hunt club” interior design to commemorate the history of the nearby Main Line horse track. In preparation for the sports betting operation, VFTC installed 100 additional televisions.

Sports bettors will have the option of wagering through either live tellers or kiosks. There will be six tellers and 14 kiosks accepting bets.

Once the sportsbook opens full-time, players will be able to place bets every day of the week. The hours of operation for the VFTC sportsbook will be as follows (all times ET):

  • Sunday – Tuesday: noon until 10 p.m.
  • Wednesday – Thursday: noon until 11 p.m.
  • Friday – Saturday: noon until midnight

Like most sportsbooks, there are a wide variety of wager types available to bettors. VFTC accepts a range of bets, including:

  • Point spreads
  • Moneylines
  • Totals
  • Propositions
  • Parlays
  • Teasers

With regard to sports, VFTC offers most major events to its players. Some of the sports available for wagering include:

  • Football (NFL & college)
  • Basketball (NBA & college)
  • Baseball (MLB)
  • Hockey (NHL)
  • Boxing
  • MMA
  • Golf
  • Tennis

VFTC striking while the iron is hot

The debut of the VFTC’s sportsbook is not particularly surprising. The results from the first two months of legal sports betting in Pennsylvania have no doubt encouraged more expansion.

In its first full month of operation, the three open sportsbooks accepted $16 million in wagers. A month later, the number of sportsbooks had doubled, but so had the amount of betting.

Pennsylvania is also on the cusp of launching online gambling and online sports betting. Most sources now predict that those sites and online betting apps will launch in the second quarter of 2019.

In fact, the technological and practical pieces of operating online are likely already in place. Right now, the delay is due to the ongoing dispute between Pennsylvania and the US Department of Justice.

Pennsylvania regulators and operators are likely waiting to see the outcome of the DOJ’s Wire Act enforcement before they hit the accelerator. The hope is that Pennsylvania residents will finally get a chance to play online by Summer 2019.

Bart Shirley

About

Bart Shirley is a writer and poker player from Houston, Texas. When he's not teaching high school math and business, Bart writes about the NJ online casino industry and US online poker. He has a master's degree in business administration from Texas Christian University and a degree in English from Texas A&M.

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