Delaware Sees Sports Betting Handle, Revenue Drop In April

Delaware Sees Sports Betting Handle, Revenue Drop In April
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Delaware sportsbooks experienced a decline in sports betting handle and revenue in April, though the state could receive a needed boost with the return of fans to a NASCAR track located at one of its three retail casinos.

Total sports betting handle in the First State for April was $5.5 million, down 17.9% from the $6.7 million collected in March, when books had the benefit of the NCAA Basketball Tournaments.

Total sports betting revenue in April was $894,231, down 7.4% from the $965,419 recorded in March, according to figures released by the Delaware Lottery on Wednesday.

RELATED: More on Delaware sports betting

All sports betting in April was conducted at retail casinos, given that the state’s 102 sports lottery retailers only offer college football and NFL parlay wagers. Delaware also does not feature mobile sports betting — unlike neighboring Pennsylvania and its large, competitive mobile sports betting market. So Delaware residents only need to cross the northern border to wager on their phones.

Delaware Sports Betting, April vs. March

Total handle Revenue
ChangeDown 17.9% Down 7.4%

Note: There is no mobile sports betting in Delaware.

April Dip Follows March Revenue Rise

Delaware’s sports betting numbers for April represented a massive year-over-year increase from the same month in 2020, when casinos were closed during the coronavirus pandemic. Sports betting handle was zero in April 2020 and revenue was minus-$104 that month.

The April figures represented the second consecutive month of decrease in handle, which also fell 11.4% from February to March. The April drop in sportsbook revenue in Delaware represented a step back after a 62.1% increase in March, a jump likely fueled by March Madness betting.

The three retail sportsbooks in Delaware are located at race tracks or casinos — Dover Downs in the capital, Harrington in the rural central part of the state and Delaware Park in Wilmington.

Delaware has iGaming but has not reported those April figures yet.

NASCAR Fans Return To Dover Downs

Dover Downs also features a 1-mile oval track that hosts the NASCAR Cup Series on Sunday, and the “Monster Mile” will welcome back fans for the first time since before the coronavirus pandemic. NASCAR events are traditionally good for the Dover Downs sportsbook. Not only does the facility offer NASCAR bets, but this weekend’s race coincides with a popular wagering event in Saturday’s Preakness Stakes.

The state is currently mandating that Delaware casinos be limited to 50 percent occupancy. Delaware has also mandated protocols like ensuring sportsbook patrons are socially distanced.

The NASCAR track, which typically holds 54,000, will also be limited to a lower percentage. Though the track has not specified the number, 50% capacity would mean a crowd of 27,000 according to a story. Dover’s available seats are sold out for Sunday, according to the track.