NASCAR has a strong fan following in the United States and with sports betting being legalized in a number of states, it would be a big payday to have most of them wagering. NASCAR would benefit in a number of ways as it would gain a lot more attention by getting fans to start placing wagers on NASCAR races.
This is why the stock car racing organization has teamed up with Genius Sports to create exclusive NASCAR sportsbooks so that fans could bet while watching. This is what is known as in-race betting.
This would be a big step for NASCAR. The plan is for Genius Sports to develop a platform for NASCAR betting, with an option for live odds. In-race betting will offer sportsbooks an exciting new product for bettors to try out and also for NASCAR fans to enjoy.
However, market analysts are not very confident that this new strategy will pay off for NASCAR and some sportsbooks are not very open to the idea.
In a statement, Ed Salmons, a Westgate sportsbook manager said
It’s a good thought process, but I think it works much better with golf than NASCAR. In a golf tournament, especially the Masters in the third and fourth round, there’s so much changing on the leaderboard. In NASCAR, not so much.
The main problem is that during a race, an early lead can be insurmountable. The race may have 150 laps before the end, but fans can usually point out to the four in the lead and be sure that one of them is going to be winning. There might be an upset but that takes crazy circumstances. It could mean that the same eight people would win all the races in a year and that is not good for betting. 4
Salmon also pointed out that NASCAR was probably expecting a big cut of the revenue. This could make it hard for sportsbooks to make a profit from the product. They might opt for other sporting options like golf. For example, golf’s major tournaments can generate ten times the betting action of two NASCAR races.
In the past, only Nevada had sports betting. But with the Supreme Court ruling that lifted the sports betting ban, seven other states have opened up to it. This includes Delaware, Rhode Island, Mississippi, New Jersey, West Virginia, Pennsylvania and New Mexico. Bettors can also expect more states to join this number as more sports betting bills are being considered.
Estimates say that it will take up to eight months for NASCAR’s in-race betting to go live. This will mean sports betting for the 2020 season. The organization hopes that this will help keep fans engaged and help it reach a wider and newer demographic.