When the new, permanent Barstool Sportsbook at Hollywood Casino at Kansas Speedway opens, it will deliver an experience found in few other places. Customers will not only be able to place sports bets, they’ll be able to see stock cars whizzing by on race days. The sounds of the engines and the thrill of the event will likely permeate a venue with 20-foot ceilings and an outdoor patio that is 30 yards from Turn 2.
The sportsbook is one of four that has opened or been approved for a NASCAR track in the U.S. Among those are a Barstool Sportsbook at Phoenix Raceway in Arizona and WynnBET sportsbooks at Martinsville Speedway and Richmond Raceway in Virginia. The Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in Ohio is eligible to apply for a license as well, but hasn’t yet. Ohio sports betting should be going live later this year.
Barstool’s Kansas book will also be only the second one anywhere in the U.S. that provides a view directly onto the athletic surface. When FanDuel opened its Audi Field location earlier this summer, it unveiled a view and a patio that are all but on the pitch.
According to Rick Skinner, Hollywood Casino’s vice president and general manager, the company didn’t get its building permits approved until late July, at which point it “immediately went to work” on a temporary sportsbook. Like other operators and casinos in Kansas, Hollywood is waiting on final approvals from the Kansas Lottery, and though it hasn’t announced a go-live date, it’s likely the temporary sportsbook will open as soon as regulators allow, which is Sept. 1. The temporary location will be in an area that formerly housed slot machines and is adjacent to where the new Barstool Sportsbook will be.
The book will be one of four brick-and-mortar wagering locations in Kansas, which legalized sports betting in May. Under Kansas law, the state technically owns all wagering in the state, and casinos are “management partners.” In addition to Hollywood Casino, Boot Hill Casino (DraftKings), Kansas Crossing (Caesars Sportsbook), and Kansas Star (FanDuel) all have plans for retail sportsbooks. All four will also have digital platforms, along with Bally Bet, BetMGM, FOX Bet, and PointsBet.
Temporary facility won’t all go to waste
Barstool’s temporary sportsbook will have teller windows and kiosks, an odds board, and plenty of viewing screens. The book also won’t completely be abandoned when the permanent one opens.
“When we build the teller windows for the temporary facility, we’ll build them so they can use them in the permanent facility,” Skinner said. “We’ll tear down the right wall, so people can see into the casino.”
The permanent sporstsbook will be housed in the former Epic Buffet. Skinner isn’t ready to name a specific date that it will be open, but whenever it is, he said it will be worth the wait.
“The permanent sportsbook will have spectacular views of the track,” he said. “It will have a full-service dine-in restaurant, video poker bar, lounge seating, and additional tables games.”
That’s on top of odds boards, a video wall, a screen hanging from the ceiling like you would see at a sports arena, and rolling doors that can be opened for concerts or other entertainment. But the piece de resistance will be the views of the racetrack.
“It’s the views of the raceway that will set us apart,” Skinner said.