After a few months of the coronavirus pandemic interrupting the ramp-up of Indiana sports betting, it looks like the market might be back on track.
Handle more than doubled to $70.9 million in July compared to June, according to the state’s report. Revenue also jumped 128% over June to $6.7 million.
That brought the total Indiana sports betting handle beyond the $1 billion mark since launching last September. The market reached that milestone in less than a year despite the effects of coronavirus shutdowns.
Indiana sports betting better with sports
There were some lean months from March through June for sports betting operators as major sports were shut down from the coronavirus pandemic. Those months included little to no sports at all in the beginning. That slate gradually expanded to include NASCAR, PGA Tour golf and UFC.
On July 23, that all changed. Major League Baseball held its first two games of 2020 that night. The National Basketball League then relaunched its season a week later. Major League Soccer also began its 2020 campaign earlier in July.
Those eight days of MLB play and eight NBA games really added up for Indiana operators. Baseball handle totaled $14.5 million while basketball handle hit $5.8 million in July. That was up from $2 million bet on baseball and $618,166 on basketball all of June.
There was a big jump in parlay betting as well. Parlay handle totaled $15.6 million in July, up from $6 million in June.
‘Other’ sports still led the way
With a majority of the month still missing major US sports, the “other” category led the month with $33.4 million in handle.
In Indiana’s case, the “other” category includes all handle that isn’t bet on baseball, basketball, football, or parlay bets.
So it’s no surprise that sports like golf, auto racing, and table tennis continued to lead the way in July. But with major sports back – the National Hockey League started its playoffs Aug. 1 – that likely won’t be the case for August.
Indiana should continue to roll despite Illinois’ launch
There’s no question bettors from Illinois helped launch Indiana’s sports betting market last September. But just because Illinois sports betting has its own mobile sportsbooks now doesn’t necessarily mean Indiana’s market will suffer.
As long as NFL betting isn’t interrupted, Indiana’s sports betting market should continue to ramp up solidly this fall. The state now has eight online sportsbooks with more to come. Even though Illinois does offer mobile sports betting, it still might be easier for some to travel and bet with their preferred book in Indiana.
Illinois Gov. JB Pritzker already walked back an executive order that lifted the state’s in-person registration requirement. Bettors had under two months to register online for the state’s only online book at the time, BetRivers.
DraftKings Sportsbook is also live in Illinois but sits more than a four–hour drive from the Chicago market. That means if a bettor already signed up with DraftKings in Indiana and they want to stick with DraftKings, they’ll probably continue to travel to Indiana to place those bets. Registration from Indiana does not apply for the DraftKings app in Illinois.