Yes, Virginia, there is live horse racing in the state of Virginia. Plenty of it, in fact. There is thoroughbred racing at Colonial Downs. Shenandoah Downs offers live standardbred racing. The Virginia Gold Cup and International Gold Cup offer the best in steeplechase racing.
Virginia Horse Betting Sites/Apps
- 1ST Bet
Virginia Best Horse Betting Offers
Virginia Best Online Horse Betting Promotions
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Get up to $200 Back If your first single-horse win bet doesn’t win. TVG also fees on your first deposit of $50 or more.
Betting Features: TVG Expert Picks for everyday, Free Past Performances Program, Money Back Special on select races.
TwinSpires offers a $200 signup bonus to new customers. The $200 bonus cash is credited instantly after $500 in completed wagers are played.
Betting Features: Live races and highlights of previous races both on the website and the app, 15% boost on a winning Trifecta bet every Tuesday.
First Bet Virginia
1/ST BET’s new players can choose from among three signup bonus options. They can get a $20 match for their first $20 wagered, a $100 match for their first $500 wagered, or a $10 match per $100 up to a total match of $500. A bettor would need to wager $5,000 to max out the latter offer. They have 90 days to fulfill the bonus requirements of each offer.
Betting Features: Rewards points every Tuesday and other weekly offers.
Popular Online Horse Bet Types & Races
The simplest forms of wagering on Virginia horse racing are the so-called straight bets of win, place and show. A win bet is placing a wager on a horse to win. That horse must come in first for you to win the wager. Place betting is wagering on a horse to come in first or second place. You win the wager if the horse comes in the top two. Show betting is wagering on a horse to finish in first, second, or third. You win the wager if the horse comes in the top three.
Exotic wagers are more complicated but also offer the potential to be more rewarding. An exacta wager is placing a wager on two horses to come in first and second. To win, the horses must come in that exact order. A quinella wager is placing a wager on two horses to come in first and second in any order. A trifecta is selecting three horses to finish in first, second, and third. To win, they must finish in that exact order.
Bettors can also box exacta, trifecta, and quinella wagers. By boxing the horses involved in the bet, the bet is a winner no matter the order in which they finish.
Virginia Horse Racing Betting Legal Overview
While steeplechase racing has been prominent in Virginia since colonial times, it was in 1922 that the Virginia Gold Cup was created. Today, it is the highlight event of a seven-race card held each year before crowds that number up to 60,000. In October, the International Gold Cup brings approximately 35,000 to the track.
Virginia recently announced the addition of a sires stakes program for harness racing in the state to begin in 2022. The first eligible horses to participate in the series will be the foals of 2024.
Major US Horse Betting Events You Can Wager On In VA
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Held every year on the first Sunday in May, the Virginia Gold Cup is one of the jewels of the American steeplechase season. In the fall, Virginia held the International Gold Cup, another major steeplechase event held.
Every September, the Virginia Breeders Stakes for two and three-year-old colt and filly trotters and pacers are held at Shenandoah Downs. Likewise, Colonial Downs offers Virginia Breeders Stakes events for the state’s best thoroughbreds.
Colonial Downs: 10515 Colonial Downs Pkwy, New Kent, VA 23124. Offering live thoroughbred racing from July-September.
Great Meadow In The Plains: 5089 Old Tavern Rd, The Plains, VA 20198. Home of the Virginia Gold Cup steeplechase races in May and the International Gold Cup races in October.
Shenandoah Downs: 300 Fairground Rd., Woodstock, VA 22664. Offering live standardbred racing from September-October.
Virginia Online Horse Betting FAQs
Live streaming of both the Virginia Gold Cup and International Gold Cup races is offered through the track’s website and can be accessed via their mobile app. Shenandoah Downs also live streams all of their racing.
Races can also be streamed by opening an online account with TVG, 1/ST BET or TwinSpires.
18 for pari-mutuel horse wagering.
TwinSpires, TVG, and 1/ST Bet are the top horse-wagering platforms in the state.