Greenmount OTB was awarded a sports wagering facility license Monday morning by the Maryland Sports Wagering Application Review Commission (SWARC). The off-track betting (OTB) facility, which is located within the Greenmount Station Restaurant in Hampstead, is the eighth Maryland entity to be awarded a sports betting license by the SWARC.
Greenmount OTB has yet to announce an official partnership with a sportsbook operator, although that process is in the works. The facility is expected to launch its sports betting operation in early 2022. The location features 15 TVs, a sports bar, and NFL Sunday Ticket.
Ocean Downs Casino launches sports betting
Elsewhere in Maryland, Ocean Downs Casino (TwinSpires) opened its retail sports betting operation Friday evening in Berlin. The facility held a ribbon-cutting ceremony at 5:30 p.m.
With its retail sports betting launch, Ocean Downs became the fourth Maryland casino to launch sports wagering. The casino joins MGM National Harbor (BetMGM), Live! Casino (FanDuel), and Horseshoe Casino Baltimore (Caesars) as Maryland casinos with retail sports betting.
— Stephen Schatz (@StephenSchatz) December 18, 2021
Ocean Downs Casino received approval from the SWARC on Nov. 18. It took the facility about a month to be ready to launch sports betting. MGM National Harbor, Live! Casino, and Horseshoe Casino were awarded licenses on Nov. 18 as well. MGM National Harbor took the state’s first sports wagers on Dec. 9.
Next steps for Maryland
Mobile sports betting still isn’t expected until late 2022, but more retail locations will receive sports wagering facility licenses and launch retail sportsbooks in the coming weeks and months.
If everything goes smoothly with controlled demonstrations this week, Hollywood Casino Perryville (Barstool Sportsbook) is expected to launch its retail sports betting operation on Thursday. Hollywood Casino received a sports wagering facility license from the SWARC on Nov. 18.
Riverboat-on-the-Potomac (PointsBet) and Long Shot’s both received their facility licenses earlier this month. The two entities, each with diverse ownership, are expected to launch their retail operations in early 2022. Long Shot’s has yet to officially announce a sportsbook partnership, although that information is expected in the near future.
“That’s why the whole legislation was developed, right?” said Maryland Lottery and Gaming Director John Martin.
“That’s the promise, is to get everyone a seat at the table.”
— Sports Handle (@sports_handle) December 15, 2021
As for the SWARC, the group is working on creating a more consistent meeting schedule. The group, which awards sports betting licenses, is currently meeting when the need to award a license pops up, but the seven-member panel wants a more regular schedule.
It’s worth noting that the SWARC is moving through the license application review process fairly quickly compared to a few months ago. Monday’s meeting to award Greenmount OTB a license took approximately five minutes to complete. The meeting to award the first five casinos licenses on Nov. 18 took about an hour, with lengthy discussion and debate related to awarding licenses. That came after no decision was made during a Nov. 3 meeting and the group’s October meeting was canceled.