Massachusetts, long home to one of the major thoroughbred racetracks in the U.S., is one of many states where the sport of horse racing is just a shadow of its former self.
The state laws allow parimutuel betting on horses and do not prohibit online betting on them, nearly all providers of online advance-deposit wagering (ADW) accept customers from Massachusetts, including the four biggest operators: TwinSpires.com, TVG.com, NYRABets.com, and Xpressbet.com.
These companies and the smaller ADW providers offer a range of signup bonuses and rewards programs to attract new customers, so shop around to find the deal that best fits your level of play.
You must be 18 or older to place online horse bets in Massachusetts.
Massachusetts Horse Race Betting Sites & Offers
|Racebooks||Welcome Offer for Massachusetts||Other Promos|
|Nyra Bets||$200 deposit match||Odds boosters, daily offers|
|TVG||Get up to $200 back||Get a $25 Bonus for every friend you refer|
|TwinSpires||$200 sign-up offer||Free play daily & weekly options|
|Xpressbet||$100 sign-up bonus||XB Rewards loyalty program|
|123bet||$1230 new member bonus||Refer-a-Friend bonus: get $50|
|1/ST BET||$100 sign-up bonus||Rewards points every Tuesday and other weekly offers|
|Hollywoodraces.com||$200 Sign Up Bonus||WINsurance Offers: refund up to $20|
How to claim a horse racing bet promo in Massachusetts?
Horse racing betting features for Massachusetts
- Nyra Bets Massachusetts Features:
- Free live video streaming (HD live and replay)
- Free handicapping tips
- Swap positions quickly for Exacta, Tri & Supers
- Weekly live money handicapping contests with cash prizes
- TVG Massachusetts Features:
- TVG Expert Picks for everyday
- Free Past Performances Program
- Live streams from tracks around the US and beyond
- Money Back Special on select races
- Twinspires Massachusetts Features:
- First Race Freeplay: get $100 in Free Bets
- 15% boost on a winning Trifecta bet every Tuesday
- Exacta insurance: get a bet back of up to $10
- Live races and highlights of previous races, both on the website and the app
- Bet Back offers (receive a refund for your bet if the horse you bet on to win the race finishes in second or third)
- Daily Double bets
- Xpressbet Massachusetts Features:
- Horse racing’s leading loyalty program (receive two XB Rewards Points for every dollar you wager)
- Cash prizes in regular handicapping contests
- Deposit by mail
- Bet the horse races over the phone
- 1st/bet Massachusetts Features:
- Up-to-date news about upcoming races
- Unlimited access to the BETMIX products: Toteboarding, Free Daily Race Analysis and “Race of the Day” Past Performance
- 123bet Massachusetts Features:
- No fees Friday (deposit $10 or more on Fridays via credit card or Paynearme)
- Loyalty Reward Points
- Handicapping products from Equibase (available only on the web)
- Hollywood Races Massachusetts Features:
- Free Expert Picks
- Loyalty program for top players (earn up to $200 in bonuses each week with the 2 VIP promotions)
Horse bet types available online
In Massachusetts, you can place different types of horse wagers. The most popular online bets are
- Win (the horse you bet on must come first)
- Place (the horse must finish first or second)
- Show (the horse must come either first, second, or third)
- Win Place (places a win and a place bet in one bet)
- Win Show (places a win and a show bet in one bet)
- Win Place Show (aka “across the board”; combines Win, Place and Show into one bet)
- Exacta (you bet on horses to come first and second in that order)
- Quinella (the same as exacta, but horses can finish in any order for you to win the bet)
- Trifecta (three horses should finish first, second and third in that order)
- Superfecta (the same as trifecta but here you bet on four horses)
- Super High 5 (you have to choose the winner of five races in a row)
- Grand Slam (pick a horse to finish in the top three in three straight races, capped by the winner of the fourth race in the sequence)
- Parlays (combine multiple selections on the same ticket, even if the races aren’t in sequential order).
- Credit and Debit Cards
- ACH Bank Transfer / eCheck
- Wire Transfer
- Green Dot
- Check or Money Order
- By mail: Xpressbet
Massachusetts Horse Betting Overview
The Bay State hosted thoroughbred racing at Suffolk Downs in east Boston from 1935 through July 2019, attracting some of the most famous names in racing, including War Admiral, Seabiscuit, Whirlaway, John Henry, Cigar and Skip Away, for its marquee race, the Massachusetts Handicap.
It also had a robust fair racing circuit that at one point had seven different fairs involved, but that also is gone after the Northhampton fair held its final race meet in 2005.
Today, only a single harness racing track, Plainridge Park Casino in Plainridge, offers live racing in the state, typically from late April to late November.
Apart from the casino at the Plainridge track, about 35 miles southwest of Boston, the state also has casinos just to the north of Boston and in Springfield, in western Massachusetts, and two tribes are seeking to build casinos.
State gambling laws also allow fantasy sports betting, a lottery, and various charitable gaming.
Sports betting is not currently legal in the state, but the Legislature is expected to take the matter up again in 2022 after coming close to approving it in the prior session.
Fun fact about horse racing in Massachusetts
Suffolk Downs, which continues to exist as a simulcast outlet, was built by 3,000 workers in just 62 days after Massachusetts authorized parimutuel wagering in 1935.
Popular horse racing events to bet on in Massachusetts
- The Spirit of Massachusetts Trot
- Paul Revere Pace
- Battle Of Bunker Hill Trot
- Clara Barton Pace
- The Kentucky Derby
- Belmont Stakes
- Preakness Stakes
- Breeders’ Cup
- Travers Stakes
- Pacific Classic Stakes
- Haskell Invitational
- Dubai World Cup
- Melbourne Cup
- Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe
- Grand National
Horse Race Tracks in Massachusetts
- Plainridge Park Casino
- Foxboro Raceway (closed in 1997)
- Three County Fair (closed in 2005)
- Suffolk Downs (closed in 2014)
Yes, it is legal to bet on horse racing online and via mobile apps in Massachusetts.
All four major providers of advance-deposit wagering – TVG.com, TwinSpires.com, NYRABets, and Xpressbet.com – accept customers from Massachusetts.
No, the BetMGM Horse Racing App is not allowed in Massachusetts. It’s available In Ohio, Florida, and Louisiana.