William Hill Brings Pari-Mutuel Betting to Horseshoe Council Bluffs Casino

UK gambling operator William Hill and US casino owner Caesars Entertainment announced that they have brought pari-mutuel simulcast wagering to Horseshoe Council Bluffs Casino in Council Bluffs Iowa.

According to a press release from Monday, casino patrons are now able to place their wagers on harness, thoroughbred, and greyhound tracks every day during the week. A special simulcasting area has been built next to the property’s casino floor. As announced, it features two video walls and a sports bar.

The announcement comes just a few days before the 2017 edition of the Kentucky Derby. The 143rd running of the major event is scheduled for May 6, 2017 and will take place at Churchill Downs in Louisville, Kentucky.

William Hill’s US division and Caesars Entertainment announced their partnership in early 2017. Back then, the proposal was subject to regulatory approval from the relevant bodies. The two operators planned to complete the special wagering facility before the Kentucky Derby, a promise they managed to fulfill.

Pari-mutuel betting is one of the few forms of betting allowed in states across the nation. Otherwise, sports betting is considered illegal in the US, a status quo that many believe may change at some point in future.

According to industry insiders, this may even happen during President Donald Trump’s tenure. President Trump was once a supporter of a long-running effort for lifting the nationwide sports betting ban imposed in the early 1990s. Him being at the country’s helm is seen by many as a silver lining for the sports betting push.

Supporters of the idea have further been encouraged by growing support from major sports leagues. These used to steer away from any association with gambling, lest their reputation was marred. However, more and more sports executives see the potential a legalized sports betting industry has and the benefits it may bring, including additional revenue and marketing opportunities that usually come with sponsorship agreements.

Being one of the biggest UK gambling operators, William Hill’s operations are far from concentrated solely to its homeland. The company entered the very limited US betting market in mid-2012 by buying three sportsbook brands in Nevada, the only US state where full-scale sports betting is legal.

William Hill has also announced recently that it would expand its Nevada operations with the launch of another sports betting venue. Riverside Resort Hotel & Casino in Laughlin, Nevada is expected to open a remodeled Race & Sports Book, operated by the major UK bookmaker, in the months to come. The venue will be William Hill’s 109th location across Nevada.

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