A NASCAR Stipulation Slows Down Legalized Sports Betting in Virginia

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While it may have seemed that legalized sports betting wasn’t far off in Virginia, a small tweak to the bill has caused things to slow down almost to a halt.

That “small tweak” has come in the form of NASCAR tracks being floated as a possible addition to legalized sports betting. Gov. Ralph Northam has suggested applying the definition of a “major league sports franchise” to NASCAR in order to make it possible for people to place legal wagers on NASCAR races.

NASCAR Could Be a Welcome Addition

As the state of Virginia has continued to move towards legalized sports betting, it looks like there is a last-minute entry in the form of NASCAR racing that could end up winning the race.

NASCAR has long since been a favorite sport in many of the states across the nation, so deciding to group that into the terminology of a major league sports franchise seemed like a natural step for many lawmakers.

Additionally, Virginia is home to two NASCAR tracks Martinsville and Richmond. So, it makes sense for the state to include NASCAR into their sports betting plans.

Rather than and signing the bill into law, Gov. Ralph Northam has gone ahead and made recommendations instead. That doesn’t mean the bill is stalled, rather there are new discussions to be had.

Each of the suggestions and recommendations he has made will be considered on April 22nd when the legislature will reconvene.

The good news for those who had been waiting for the bill to pass is that the recommendations and suggestions don’t seem to be big enough that it will stop the bill from passing. Instead, it is about tweaking it to make sure it works for the state and its residents.

In the bill’s original form, the leagues that were getting the green light for legalized sports betting were Major League Soccer, MLB, NHL, NFL, and NBA. While this would be a significant list, and one that is in step with what other states are doing, the Governor felt the addition of NASCAR racing would make sense as well.

Additional Suggestions Made

While Gov. Northam seemed very keen on the addition of NASCAR that wasn’t the end of his recommendations.

Additionally, the Governor has asked that the costs for operators be raised. The cost would be $50,000 for each principal that requires a background check. Furthermore, if the background checks went over budget, the costs charged to the principal would go up.

Clearly these would make changes to the bill, but not significant enough to stop the bill from passing. The bill has gone through plenty of discussions to get to the point where it is at now.

In fact, earlier this year there was a chance it may not even be passed at all when the chambers were stuck in a stalemate situation. However agreements were reached and suddenly things started moving forwards once again.

The way things are shaping up right now is that Virginia would see between four and 12 online-online licenses, five licences for casinos, and then a license for each sports betting franchise that enters into Virginia. All in all it’s looking pretty good for those anxious to see the doors open up to legalized sports betting.

Rick Rockwell

As a longtime freelance writer, avid sports fan, former athlete, and experienced sports bettor, Rick Rockwell has risen up the ranks at GamblingSites.org to become the self-professed "King of the Blog" in his first year with the site. ...

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