Boston-based sports betting giant DraftKings has launched its first online horse betting platform, DK Horse. The app is live in 12 states, according to DraftKings. The company expects that number to rise ahead of May’s Kentucky Derby.
DraftKings built the app with Churchill Downs Incorporated, a premier player in the horse racing industry. Churchill Downs provides DraftKings with its pari-mutuel rights and horse racing content.
DraftKings CEO Jason Robins said his company intends to make the app the top horse betting platform in the country.
“Together with Churchill Downs Incorporated, an industry leader with a deep-rooted history in horse racing, we will deliver an innovative, mobile customer experience. Our goal is to provide our customers with best-in-class sports and gaming products, and we expect DK Horse to provide a fun and new way to engage with renowned races like the upcoming Run for the Roses.”
The Kentucky Derby will be a good litmus test for DK Horse, as it’s likely more than $200 million will be bet on the race.
How the DK Horse gambling app works
DK Horse is a platform that’s separate from DraftKings Sportsbook. This means that new users will need to sign up for a new account and deposit funds. They cannot incorporate funds they already have in their DraftKings Sportsbook account.
Once new users download the app, they can bet on a variety of well-known horse races, including the Kentucky Derby and Kentucky Oaks. In addition to betting, users can:
- Handicap races
- Stream videos of races
- Read through betting guides for upcoming races
- Learn about the variety of betting types available in the app
To bring new customers in, DK Horse is offering a $50 bet match when users make at least $50 in settled bets within seven days of signing up.
DK Horse app comes four months after partnership with Churchill Downs
In November, DraftKigns and Churchill Downs Incorporated announced a multi-year agreement. The goal of the deal was to launch DraftKings pari-mutuel horse-racing gambling app.
Whereas the typical sports bet is based on fixed odds (your payout is fixed), the total amount bet on a horse dictates the payouts in pari-mutuel wagering (your payout varies based on how much everyone else bets). Basically, the odds of the bet a user makes on a race could change after they make their bet.
The new type of betting is likely to be a draw for a significant chunk of DraftKings’ 2.6 million paying customers. Additionally, it brings DraftKings up to speed with competitors FanDuel and BetMGM, both of which have horse racing apps.