Best Horse Racing Betting Sites In Pennsylvania 2023

There is a wide selection of betting apps, locations, and online horse racing betting sites in Pennsylvania; Through highly respected racebooks that offer coverage of the commonwealth, online gambling in PA is both legal and secure. Our article will provide beneficial information about the subject, so explore your options with us.

Best Horse Racing Betting Sites In PA 2023

1 FanDuel Sportsbook
$1,000
  • bullet-iconUser-friendly interface
  • bullet-iconSeamless transition from DFS to sportsbook with one wallet
  • bullet-iconPromos and free plays for existing members
9.5
Read Review
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FanDuel Sportsbook is a very good online sportsbook that seems to have a lot to offer every player. Players have a good range of sports to bet on, and some competitive odds to enjoy using. This is a sportsbook that seems to do what it can to beat the competition. It has a great level of security and some good deposit and cash out options.

2 BetMGM
MOST POPULAR SPORTSBOOK
$1,000 Risk-Free Bet Bonus Offer
  • bullet-iconEasy to use website and app
  • bullet-iconEvery game can be live streamed for free
  • bullet-iconWide variety of sports to bet on
9
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The BetMGM Sportsbook is potentially one of the best sportsbooks around. With a wide variety of sports to choose from and a good New Customer Offer, players are certainly in for a good time. Offering parlays and great odds compared to many other sportsbooks, BetMGM Sportsbook is well worth spending time on.

3 DraftKings Sportsbook
SUPER POPULAR
$50 Free Bet
  • bullet-iconGood range of betting markets
  • bullet-iconExcellent customer support
  • bullet-iconLow minimum deposit
9
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This DraftKings Sportsbook review has been an interesting one to research. This online sportsbook has a lot to offer every player. From a good range of betting markets to some good bonuses and promotions, here is an online sportsbook that seems to offer it all. Players should seriously consider spending time on this exciting sportsbook.

Table of Contents

Quick Facts

Since when is it legal to bet on horse racing in PA?

It first became legal in 1963.

Since when is online horse racing legal to bet on in PA?

Online betting became legal in this state in 2018

What is the minimum age to bet?

18 years (21 is required for online bookies or racinos)

How many local race tracks exist in the state?

5 in total (3 thoroughbreds)

Most popular main event

Pennsylvania Derby 

Do you need residency to play in the state?

No

Do you have to be present in the state to wager?

Yes

Top 3 Horse Racing Betting Sites in Pennsylvania

The online betting market is packed with bookies where you can bet on this sport. Since the selection is vast, you should carefully pick the site before you register. If you don’t know what to look for, check our top three picks and why we choose them.

Television Games Network (TVG)

The TVG racebook is one of the best-rated horse racing sites in the US. It is available not only in Pennsylvania but in 30 other states. The site is easy to navigate and offers three main menus, including Racing, where you can find results, schedule, and track information list.
Then, Handicapping, where you can enter menus like TVG picks, replays, a guide, and others, and Promotions.
The best thing about TVG is the live-stream feature (Click the Watch FDTV menu in the upper part of the lobby to access it).

The site offers Today’s Popular Races, where you can take your pick. There is a rich informational segment for every ongoing event too. The site’s odds are favorable and offer a good range.


Key points:

 

Main Bonus

Up to $200 cashback

Apps

Android and iOS

Best event

The Kentucky Derby

Main highlight

Great live-streaming feature

BetAmerica

Although BetAmerica offers sports and online casino segments, it takes pride in the separate menu for this sport. The site is available in Pennsylvania and 40 other states. You can access Results & Replays, Calendar, Tips, Handicapping Store, and Carryovers, among other features. The highlight of the site is the navigational features and easy-to-display specific information.
The existing filters can help you find the best bet for you, such as tournament types, including Greyhound, Harness, and Thoroughbred. The operator ensured the sportsbook was convenient enough even for newly registered bettors.

 

Key Points:

 

Main Bonus

After Registration

Apps

Android and iOS

Best event

Tri-State Eve

Main highlight

Easy navigation and rich banking section

TwinSpires

TwinSpires puts the focus on equine racing exclusively and is available to PA bettors. The site is pretty straightforward and offers five main menus in the lobby including Bet Now, Offers, New & Picks, Handicapping, and Support; Unlike the other two, TwinSpires takes the spotlight in terms of unique features as it offers a VIP program. Here you get to climb up 4 tiers and thus earn various multipliers for your bets and other lucrative prizes.

Key Points:

Main Bonus

$200 sign-up offer

Apps

Android and iOS

Best event

Breeders’ Cup

Main highlight

Lucrative VIP Program

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Expert Tip

Search through at least several genuine betting sites in Pennsylvania before you pick your favorite. No matter your play preferences, make sure it has a State Horse Racing Commission license. 

Pennsylvania Sports Betting Sites Legislation

Horse race betting on pari-mutuel and Live off-track is legal in the state, and it is governed by the Pennsylvania State Horse and State Harness Racing Commissions. Ever since May 2018, offline and online sports betting in PA is legal within the state’s borders if you’re of legal age. This is true under the bill that was later signed into law as 2017 Act 42.

Advantages Of Online Vs Brick and Mortar Horse Betting

Features

Online betting

Land-based betting

Convenience

Bonus deals

Odds coverage

Safety & Security

Socialization

On-the-spot payouts

 

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Note

Each PA bookie has rules and T&C that you should respect. If you fail to do so, you may get banned from using the services of the site.

Types Of Horse Racing Bets

Before you create an account, it’s wise to check what you can expect from the operator. One of the most important aspects is the types of bets you’ll find in the racinos or bookies. Below are the main types explained. 

 

Type of Bet

Explanation

Straight Bet – Win

Win is the most straightforward type of bet as you bet on which thoroughbred will win the relay. 

Straight Bet – Place

Place bets allow you to pick a mount that will either finish in first or second place, which increases your chances of winning.

Straight Bet – Show

Show bets are similar as bettors have even more chances of winning as the thoroughbred they pick can finish in first, second, and even third place.

Exotic Bets – Single-race Exotics

To win a single-race bet, you should guess the order in which the thoroughbreds will finish the relay. You don’t have to bet on the entire order but as many potential winners as you like. The more you pick, the lesser your chances of winning the bet are, but the payout can be very lucrative.

Exotic Bets – Multi-race Exotics

Multi-race bets require players to pick the winning thoroughbreds of several events. The number of races you want to bet on is up to you. But the more relays you pick, the more difficult it will be for you to win the wager. Naturally, the prize will drastically increase too.

Exacta

Exacta bets require bettors to pick the two potential winners that will finish in first and second place. You have to guess the correct order, so you win your bet. However, there is a feature within this bet called ‘box’ which allows you to win even though you don’t guess the order of the two winners.

Quinella

Some call this type of bet “a simpler exacta,” and for a good reason. Bettors are required to guess the two potential winners that finish first and second, but the order doesn’t matter whatsoever. Remember, Quinella is not allowed on all tracks, so pay attention before placing a bet.

Trifecta

Trifecta is a bit more difficult to win as you have to pick the top three finishing equines in the relay, and you have to guess the order they finish in. If you don’t feel comfortable guessing the order, yet you want to bet on Trifecta, you can ‘box’ your wager. This will allow you to put the order aside and bet on the three finishers that will come in first, second, and third place in any order.

Superfecta

Superfecta is for those who want a challenge, as this type of bet goes up a notch. Mainly, you have to guess the order of the equines that will finish in first, second, third, and fourth place. Although it is difficult to win this bet, it pays off really well.

Super Hi-Five

This is the master type of bet of such events as you have to guess the top five finishers in order. If you think this is nearly impossible to guess, then keep in mind that the wagering pool grows with each race if no one wins the Super Hi-Five. 

Multi-race Double/Picks 3/4/5/6

In Doubles, players are required to guess the winners of two back-to-back relays. This type of bet continues to grow to Picks 3/4/5/6 depending on how many races bettors will indulge in. The more relays they bet on, the tougher it will become to win, but the prize will significantly grow as well.

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Note

When you bet online, make sure not to spend more money than you can afford to lose. This should be one of your top priorities. Moreover, keep in mind that not all types of wagers are available throughout the markets.

Horse Betting Odds

In most cases, you’ll have two options – parimutuel and fixed odds.

Fixed odds, for example, stay the same from the moment you place your wager until the end of the event. The bookmaker will payout the full amount if you win, regardless of the circumstances. 

Parimutuel odds, on the other hand, can drastically vary. This is because they represent a betting system rather than a simple bet. In fact, all wagers contribute to a winning pool, and once the taxes are deducted, the rest is shared between the winners. In other words, you won’t be able to calculate how much you’ll win by only knowing your stake. 

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Example

Odds let players know the cash return if they win the wager. If you see odds in the form of 8-3, 5-2, it means you are looking at the amount of profit to the cash you invested. The 8-3 odds mean that for every $3 you wager, you will get $8 in return for pure profit. The total return amount for this example is $11.

Horse Racing Winnings Rates in PA

Considering Pennsylvania allows online gambling and betting, the state levies tax on any kind of gambling income. This is in addition to the already existing federal tax that applies throughout the USA. 

 

Tax

Rate

Note

Pennsylvania Tax

3.07%

Applies for winnings of $600 or more

Federal tax

14%

Applies for winnings of $600 or more

Where And How To Bet On Horse Racing In Pennsylvania?

Pennsylvania offers several places where bettors can go and have a good time. Some of those racetracks are relatively new compared to the ones existing since more than half a century ago. Some of the best places to visit and bet on a real such event in Pennsylvania are:

 

  • Presque Isle Downs & Casino – The track at Presque Isle Downs in Erie has existed since 2007 and is topped by a casino, so you get to enjoy extra activities if you want to. You can be a part of the crowd Sundays through Thursdays each month between May and October. However, considering there’s a casino in the complex, you have to be over 21 years old.

     

  • The Meadows Racetrack & Casino – This track has been active since 2009, and ever since, people in Washington, PA, got their county richer through yet another activity. The Meadows Racetrack is a host to standardbred and Harness racing which gives punters a selection of wagering opportunities. One of The Meadows’ noteworthy features is that it provides year-round events, with approximately 200 days of racing. You can come and place your bets on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Saturday afternoons.

     

  • The Downs At Mohegan Sun Pocono – This is the oldest racetrack on our list, as it has existed since 1965. The Downs at Mohegan Sun Pocono hosts live harness racing from March through November. The building, which has a casino within, is owned by the Mohegan Tribe of Indians in Connecticut.

     

There are other racetracks you can visit if you live in Pennsylvania. Some of those include Parx Racing at Parx Casino (since 1974), Hollywood Casino at Penn National Race Course (since 1972), and Harrah’s Philadelphia Casino & Racetrack (since 2007).

How To Place Your Bet?

No matter which of these tracks you visit, the betting procedure is the same. In case you are not familiar with it, read the following step-to-step guide that is adjusted to newbies:

  1. Choose your horse by checking a card, going to the paddock, or simply by which thoroughbred’s name you like the most.
  2. Decide whether you want to place a simpler or more complicated bet and the amount you will bet with.
  3. Decide if you will place the bet on the Tote or on in the betting ring.
  4. Tell the number of the horse you want to bet on to the operator and the amount you wish to play with.
  5. You shall receive a ticket which you should preserve so you can get your winnings in case your equine wins the relay.

Main Horse Racing Events in PA

Even though you’ll find a variety of events, these are the four most popular among bettors:

  • Pennsylvania Derby – This is the main event at Parx Racing. The competition exclusively accepts 3-year-old thoroughbreds and offers a $1 million prize pool. The Derby was first held in 1989 and was elevated to Grade 1 status in 2018. The Pennsylvania Derby is held on the final Saturday in September.
  • The Penn Mile – The Penn Mile is a thrilling competition that was started in 2013, despite being one of the state’s more recent races. It has the largest purse of any competition on the Penn National turf.
  • Cotillion Stakes – The Cotillion Stakes at Parx Racing offers a similar sizable $1 million purse. It’s one of the best events in the nation for 3-year-old fillies at just over a mile. The 1969 competition was the first, and it is a popular event for horse racing betting.
  • Presque Isle Down Mile – This is yet another massive Stakes fixture in Pennsylvania. The high-profile relays at this venue include the Presque Isle Masters and the Dawn Mile.

Upcoming Pennsylvania Horse Racing Events

Some of the most interesting upcoming Pennsylvania events include:

Upcoming Race Events

Dates

Page McKenney Handicap race on the Parx Racing track

April 25th, 2023

Unique Bella Stakes race on the Parx Racing track

April 25th, 2023

Kentucky Oaks race on the Churchill Downs track

May 6th, 2023

The Kentucky Derby on Churchill Downs track

May 7th, 2023

The Preakness Stakes on the Pimlico track

May 21st, 2023

The Crowd Pleaser Stakes on the Parx Racing track

May 27th, 2023

Power By Far Stakes on Parx Racing track

May 27th, 2023

Betsy Ross Invitational Mares Pace on Harrah’s Philadelphia track

May 29th, 2023

Sports Bonuses & Offers

Even though most bookies offer welcome bonuses, you shouldn’t expect special treatment as a PA player. In fact, the most popular bookies offer the same promotions across the US. For instance, signing up with TVG will result in the same promo offer, regardless if you’re in PA or NJ. 

Responsible Betting Tips

According to Pennsylvania law, regulated gambling apps must provide simple means for clients to self-exclude and set responsible gaming restrictions. Furthermore, the law compels licensed operators to give their personnel responsible gambling education.

Check the License

The first thing you should do is check whether the operator owns a license from the State Horse Racing Commission. You can also look into whether the bookie has been audited by third parties and check for an active SSL certificate.

Use Betting Limits

Instead of playing carelessly, you should always set responsible limits. You can do this by either contacting the support agents and asking them to set your daily depositing and wagering limits or checking the policy and doing it on your own.

Conclusion

Horse racing is gaining more and more popularity in Pennsylvania and throughout the states. Genuine lovers of this sport visit numerous events but others love a good online betting session too. 

Experienced and professional bettors know the basics and some tricks when it comes to placing a wager. Those who are new to online horse betting in PA should learn the core basics or it and the general rules before stat placing bets.

FAQ

Yes, both online and real-life betting has been legal in the state of Pennsylvania. After the passage of that act in 1963, the first track to officially open was Meadows Racetrack.

Check the background of the operators. If the betting sites in Pennsylvania you look into are managed and operated by a legitimate parent company that works under a license issued by the state’s Commission, then feel free to register and place your bets.

The most complex bet type is the Super Hi-Five. Players have to guess the outcome of the race for the first five equine’s places in consecutive order. Although complex, this bet type has an excellent payout.

The Straight Bets (Win, Place, Show) are three of the most simple betting types, with Win being the easiest of them all. Players who place a Win Bet should guess which will be the winning horse in the event.

Yes, some bet types allow you to place a wager on several competitions at once. The bet in question is Multi-race Double/Picks 3/4/5/6. Those who place such wagers should guess the winning equines of two and/or up to 6 relays.