NASCAR announced a deal with Genius Sports, a sports data enterprise, to develop a live betting product for use in legal sportsbooks.
Genius Sports will utilize NASCAR’s official data stream to create the platform, which will consist of real-time odds to be used for customary wagers and other prop bets. The product aims to create more engagement with existing audiences while potentially branching into untapped viewing areas.
“NASCAR fans are some of the most devoted in the world, and we look forward to helping them to create a deeper, more connected experience that is both safe and secure as the business of sports betting continues to evolve in the U.S.,” said Mark Locke, Genius Sports CEO, in a press release detailing the partnership.
“Furthermore, our global relationships will help bring the excitement of NASCAR racing to new audiences both within the U.S. and in new territories around the world.”
This news comes as music to the ears of NASCAR bettors with access to legal sportsbooks.
There’s no hiding that NASCAR’s ratings have been flailing in the wrong direction, as February’s flagship Daytona 500 had the lowest rating in the recorded history of the event. Viewership for April’s Geico 500 from Talladega also dipped to historically low levels.
Attendance across race tracks nationwide has dwindled as well. That was especially apparent for the Food City 500 at Bristol Motor Speedway in March. The track has been built to hold 160,000 people, but only an estimated 38,000 filled a small portion of the stands this year.
Developing an innovative betting platform could add a much-needed lifeline for NASCAR to combat those frightening trends.
“Partnering with Genius Sports allows us to deliver a dynamic fan engagement platform in the rapidly-growing world of legalized sports gaming,” said Brian Herbst, senior vice president, broadcasting and innovation, NASCAR. “This new relationship will provide another entry point to the sport and complements our strategy to create a more immersive experience for fans.”
NASCAR odds are currently limited at best throughout most U.S. sportsbooks. Most shops only post odds for race winners, while others don’t even carry the sport. Introducing live betting with a streamlined product will inevitably result in more opportunities for sports bettors to wager on a race.
- Find complete odds at these Top Legal Sportsbooks
- The deal serves as NASCAR’s first involvement in the ever-growing sports betting landscape. They are following in the footsteps of the National Basketball Association (NBA), National Hockey League (NHL), and Major League Baseball (MLB): all of which signed partnerships with MGM Resorts International in 2018.