Online launches and increased visitation from bettors based in the Chicago area has seen Indiana sports wagering handle almost triple month-to-month.

The state’s retail and online sportsbooks combined to collect $91.7m in bets in October, up 161 per cent from $35.2m in retail bets in September, according to official figures released by the Indiana Gaming Commission.

Handle yielded $11.5m in adjusted gross revenue for the sportsbooks, up 34 per cent from $8.6m in September, and of which 45 per cent came from wagering on the National Football League. October’s win also generated $1.1m in tax revenue for the state.

Online introductions have been lauded as the primary driver of the increases, with a trio of introductions picked out by analysts at

BetRivers Sportsbook, under the French Lick Resort license, was joined by DraftKings, under the Ameristar Casino license, in early October as the first to launch their online offerings, before FanDuel, operating under the Blue Chip Casino license, debuting later in the month.

The three combined to take in $48.01m in bets, representing 52 per cent of the state’s total handle, which brought $4.2m in gross receipts. DraftKings led the way by posting a $39.4m handle, followed by BetRivers’ $6.3m, and FanDuel’s $2.4m.

“Indiana is quickly becoming a star among legal sports betting markets in the US,” stated Dustin Gouker, lead analyst for “Indiana is so far ahead of its neighbours in Illinois, Ohio, Kentucky, and Michigan, that the Hoosier State is well on its way to establishing itself as the gambling capital of the Midwest.

“Online sports betting is a key accelerator in the growth of any legal sports betting jurisdiction that offers it. But Indiana’s potential online market is particularly substantial.

“Indiana does not require out-of-state bettors to register in person at a retail sportsbook, so out-of-state residents simply need to cross the state line to place a bet.”

Furthermore, Chicago-area residents are said to be crossing the state line in droves, as evidenced by the retail sportsbooks leading the market. 

Horseshoe Hammond, near Chicago, generated an Indiana-best handle of $10.7m, which was up from $8.98m in September, and yielding $1.7m in gross receipts.

This was followed by Hollywood Lawrenceburg, located in close proximity to Cincinnati ($6.9m in bets, up from $5.2m, and $843,970 win) and Ameristar Casino in East Chicago ($6.8m handle, up from $5.4m and $1m win).

“Indiana is a unique market because it has so many large markets without legal sports betting so close to its borders,” Gouker added. 

“Two of the top retail sportsbooks in the state are near Chicago, and the second largest is just over the border from Cincinnati. That shows just how much out-of-state money is flowing into Indiana sportsbooks.”