Parx Casino Owner Seeks Permission for Sportsbook at Valley Forge Turf Club

The owner of Parx Casino in Bensalem, Pennsylvania is seeking permission to convert the Valley Forge Turf Club into a satellite betting facility

Greenwood Gaming and Entertainment Inc., filed late last week a petition with the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board to open a physical sportsbook at its Valley Forge Turf Club property, located in Oaks, just off U.S. 422 and a short drive from Philadelphia.

Greenwood is also the owner of Parx Casino in Bensalem, which went live with sports betting in early January, and of South Philadelphia Turf Club, which opened a satellite sportsbook in mid-January. The company’s two operational betting facilities and the one yet to be opened at the Valley Forge Turf Club are all competing for a share of the lucrative gambling market in the Philadelphia region.

It is still unclear when Greenwood will be able to open its third sports gambling location. In its filing with Pennsylvania’s gambling regulator, the company said that the Valley Forge Turf Club is “ideally suited” to bettors and travelers because it is located near key locations, such as Valley Forge National Park and the King of Prussia Mall, and key Philadelphia suburbs.

The Valley Forge Turf Club opened doors in the mid-1990s as a horse betting and simulcast operation. With the addition of a sportsbook, Greenwood is looking to boost activity at the property as the popularity of horse racing has declined in recent years.

The Valley Forge Turf Club is licensed by the Pennsylvania Horse Racing Commission, which means that Greenwood will also need permission from that regulator in order to be able to proceed with its sports betting plan for the property.

Sports Betting in Pennsylvania

Hollywood Casino at Penn National Race Course was the first gambling operation to bring legal sports betting to Pennsylvania. The property’s William Hill-powered sportsbook went live in mid-November 2018. Two more sports betting facilities were launched by the end of 2018, with those being Rivers Casino in Pittsburgh and SugarHouse Casino in Philadelphia.

According to data released by the state’s Gaming Control Board, sports betting was off to a promising start in Pennsylvania. The first three operational sportsbooks handled $16 million in wagers in December, the first full month of legal sports betting in the state, and generated revenue of $2 million.

Financial information for the month of January is yet to be released by the gambling regulator, but the opening of three more sportsbooks in January (at Parx Casino, the South Philadelphia Turf Club, and Harrah’s Philadelphia), and increased Super Bowl betting activity last month has certainly boosted numbers.

Mobile betting is legal within the state’s borders, under its gambling law. However, licensed sportsbook operators are yet to go live with wagering apps that would make it possible for bettors to wager from anywhere within state limits. The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board has said that it would first handle physical sportsbook applications before authorizing digital betting.

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