With Expected Dip, Virginians Wagered $236M In April Sports Betting

Posted on May 28, 2021 - Last Updated on October 5, 2021

Virginians topped $236 million in April sports betting, pushing the overall total to nearly $900 million after a little more than three months of legal wagering.

The Virginia Lottery, which oversees sports wagering in the commonwealth, released the latest figures on Friday.

During the 31 days in April, Virginia sportsbooks took $236,432,524 in total wagers. Players won $216,990,207 off those bets, which created a hold of 8.22% for VA sportsbook operators.

The monthly total represented a dip of 22.2% from March. It also represented the first month-over-month decline since the VA sports wagering market launched on Jan. 21.

Overall, VA sports bettors wagered $304 million in March. Of course, the month benefitted from the high-profile NCAA March Madness men’s basketball tournament. The weekslong tournament is one of the most heavily bet events in the US each year.

A breakdown of April sports betting

VA sportsbooks won $19.4 million in April, which was down from the $26.6 million they pulled in during March.

That led to $11.4 million in adjusted gross revenue (AGR). That’s down from $13.8 million in March.

Overall, it yielded $1.7 million in state taxes, including $41,304 for problem gambling support.

Here’s the full breakdown:

MonthHandleGGRHold %PromosOther deductionsAGRTaxes
February 2022$401,889,135$27,498,1336.8%$15,816,234$3,797,649$7,884,250$7,884,250
January 2022$485,544,417$39,050,0678.0%$16,850,981$3,978,519$18,220,567$2,876,609
December 2021$426,596,891$31,515,0157.4%$17,051,709$4,339,908$10,123,398$1,729,130
November 2021$402,621,132$48,337,03712.0%$14,993,073$3,417,267$29,926,697$4,233,167
October 2021$427,320,306$30,160,3857.1%$15,805,261$4,569,424$9,785,700$1,746,204
September 2021$293,851,531$30,929,24310.5%$17,422,068$3,172,781$10,334,395$1,557,498
August 2021$182,418,252$17,967,4279.9%$6,868,639$2,410,724$8,688,064$1,378,539
July 2021$161,901,955$19,965,55612.3%$4,375,872$2,898,664$12,691,020$1,864,433
June 2021$234,943,435$22,006,2969.4%$4,983,544$2,125,855$14,896,898$2,273,995
May 2021$226,963,573$23,173,54910.2%$5,168,732$2,341,616$15,663,201$2,381,115
April 2021$236,432,523$19,442,3178.2%$5,529,294$2,532,886$11,380,137$1,652,147
March 2021$304,066,245$26,573,8778.7%$10,340,533$2,388,332$13,845,012$1,183,487
February 2021$265,778,306$12,238,7304.6%$13,187,560$2,282,972($3,231,752)$300,594
January 2021$58,896,564$3,586,0776.1%$6,343,077$478,612($3,235,612)$39,710

Just prior to the end of the month, VA welcomed its seventh sportsbook. Unibet sports betting launched on April 28.

Currently, Virginia has two other sportsbooks with permits but no timetable for a launch: Penn Sports Interactive (Barstool Sportsbook) and Bally’s Corporation.

April sports betting in VA

In Virginia and other states, the sports betting options tail off in April. That fact was represented in the April betting numbers.

The NFL and college football seasons are over by February, and the men’s hoops schedule concludes with the NCAA March Madness men’s basketball tournament. This season, the University of Baylor Bears emerged victorious with a title game win on April 5.

April still featured full schedules from the MLB, NBA and NHL. However, those leagues traditionally draw far less betting interest than other major sports organizations, notably the NFL.

However, Virginia isn’t alone in that spring/summer slowdown. Every state with legal sports betting has reported a month-over-month decline in April wagering. Some of those states with bigger sports betting markets that saw declines were:

  • New Jersey (-13%)
  • Tennessee (-13.6%)
  • Pennsylvania (-14.4%)
  • Indiana (-25.4%)
  • Michigan (-30.5%)

The race to $1 billion in wagers

With $865.2 million total in wagers, VA bettors are closing in on $1 billion.

Virginia should set the record for the fastest state to the 10-figure milestone with even a lackluster showing in May.

Tennessee, which reached the mark six months after launch, is the current record-holder. It took Virginia’s neighbor six months to reach the $1 billion mark.

If Virginia can top an easily reachable $135 million in bets in May, it will have hit $1 billion in the market’s fifth month of existence.

Photo by AP / Michael Conroy
Dann Stupp Avatar
Written by
Dann Stupp

Dann Stupp is a longtime sports journalist who’s written and edited for The Athletic, USA Today, ESPN, MLB.com and other outlets. He lives in Lexington, Virginia.

View all posts by Dann Stupp