Tennessee panel conditionally approved a license for a fifth sportsbook operator Wednesday under the state’s online-only sports betting program.
Churchill Downs drew approval from the Tennessee Lottery’s Sports Wagering Committee, joining FanDuel, BetMGM, DraftKings and Tennessee Action 24/7, the Associated Press reports. Tennessee sports betting began on November 1, 2020.
Churchill Downs’ sportsbook, BetAmerica, is rebranding as TwinSpires. BetAmerica is live in New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Indiana.
Some steps remain before Churchill Downs’ Tennessee launch, said lottery CEO Rebecca Hargove. Another meeting planned late this month will give more applicants the chance for possible approval and launch before the Super Bowl, she said.
Outstanding are approvals for WynnBet and William Hill, which applied around the same time as CDI. Another pending sports betting application in Tennessee belongs to ZenSports, which is a traditional online/mobile sportsbook but with another component that is a bit of a twist on sports betting.
State lawmakers narrowly passed sports betting in spring 2019 for people 21 and older who are physically in Tennessee while betting. Gov. Bill Lee let it become law without his signature, citing concerns over an expansion of gambling in a state without casinos.
The law took effect in July 2019, but left many regulatory specifics up to the lottery, the sports betting regulator.