West Virginia law allows betting on horse and dog racing, casinos, sports betting (at a handful of casinos and online), and a state lottery.
With the state’s embrace of parimutuel betting on horses, virtually all providers of online betting on horse races known as advance-deposit wagering (ADW) accounts accept West Virginians as customers, including the four biggest players – TVG.com, TwinSpires.com, NYRABets.com, and Xpressbet.com – as well as smaller operators like AmWager.com and DRFBets.com.
These sites offer a variety of signup bonuses and reward-for-play incentives, as well as a range of ancillary handicapping products, so it pays to shop around before deciding on a service.
You must be 18 or older to place online horse bets in West Virginia.
West Virginia Horse Race Betting Sites & Offers
|Racebooks||Welcome Offer for West Virginia||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|
|AmWager||$300 deposit match||Daily cash rewards|
|FanDuel Racing||Get 100% bonus up to $50 + $10 Sportsbook credit||10% bonus on win bets|
|DRF||Get a $200 bonus on the first deposit||Earn up to $50 every week|
|Hollywoodraces.com||$200 sign-up Bonus||WINsurance Offers: refund up to $20|
|Pointsbet||2 Risk-Free Bets up to $2,000||Free bets for points|
How to claim a horse racing bet promo in West Virginia?
Horse racing betting features for West Virginia
- Nyra Bets West Virginia 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 West Virginia 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 West Virginia 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 West Virginia 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
- AmWager West Virginia Features:
- Current and historical horse race results from a single screen
- Advanced wagering structuring tools. Dutching, ABC method, Rank betting.
- FanDuel West Virginia Features:
- Cash in with Win Bet insurance
- Live streaming (+200 tracks around the world)
- Best bets of the day
- DRF West Virginia Features:
- Unlimited DRF Classic and Formulator Past Performances
- Free Beyer Speed Figures
- Free DRF expert picks
- 1/ST Bet West Virginia Features:
- Up-to-date news about upcoming races
- Unlimited access to the BETMIX products
- 123bet West Virginia Features:
- No fees Friday (deposit $10 or more via credit card or Paynearme)
- Loyalty Reward Points
- Handicapping products from Equibase
- Hollywood Races West Virginia 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 West Virginia, 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 & Hollywood Races
- Bitcoin: AmWager via BitPay
West Virginia Horse Betting Overview
West Virginia helped usher in the modern era of horse racing in 1996 by becoming the first state to approve “racinos,” racetrack-based casinos that boost purses to improve the quality of racing.
The Mountain State approved the arrangement after Penn National Gaming agreed to purchase the struggling Charles Town racetrack, contingent on Jefferson County voters allowing the track to install slot-machine-like video lottery terminals at the track.
A vote in November of that year approved the arrangement, which quickly improved the track’s economic footing and was copied in other states with struggling racing industries.
The state had a long racing heritage to protect. Horse racing in West Virginia dates at least to 1786 when Charles Washington (the brother of the first U.S. president) organized race meets near what became Charles Town.
As a result of the presence of the purse-enhancing lottery games, West Virginia today has two profitable thoroughbred racetracks.
Charles Town, which opened in 1933, races virtually around the calendar on its three-quarter-mile “bullring” track.
Mountaineer Park in Chester, formerly known as Waterford Park, will race over its mile oval in 2022 from late April through mid-December, including staging the state’s signature race, the West Virginia Derby for 3-year-olds, in August.
The state also is one of the last holdouts still conducting dog racing at the Wheeling Island Racetrack and at the Mardi Gras Casino and Resort in Cross Lanes near Charles Town.
In addition to betting on horse races, West Virginia law allows casinos; sports betting (at a handful of casinos and online), and a state lottery.
Fun fact about horse racing in West Virginia
The West Virginia Derby, a graded stake for 3-year-olds, was first run in 1923 at the short-lived Tri-State Fair Grounds racetrack near Huntington. Tender Seth, winner of the inaugural running of the race as the 3-2 favorite, was bred by Benjamin Allyn Jones – the same Ben A. Jones would later train Calumet Farm’s Triple Crown winners Whirlaway and Citation, along with a host of other great horses for a storied equine operation in Lexington, Kentucky.
Popular horse racing events to bet on in West Virginia
- The West Virginia Derby
- WV Governor’s Stakes
- West Virginia Breeders Classics
- Race for the Ribbon
- Charles Town Classic
- 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 West Virginia
- Mountaineer Casino, Racetrack and Resort
- Charles Town Races
The state also conducts dog racing at the Wheeling Island Racetrack and at the Mardi Gras Casino and Resort in Cross Lanes.
Yes, you can. The minimum gambling age in West Virginia for horse racing is 18.
Yes, West Virginia allows horse racing betting online and through mobile apps.
The four biggest horse racing betting sites offer services to West Virginias, including TwinSpires.com, TVG.com, Xpressbet.com, and NyraBets.com along with some smaller online operators and betting apps like DRF or AmWager.
Yes, TVG operates in West Virginia.
No, the BetMGM Horse Racing App is not allowed in West Virginia. It’s available In Ohio, Florida, and Louisiana.