Turf Paradise Joins Arizona Sports Betting Market With Opening of Unibet Sportsbook

Turf Paradise Joins Arizona Sports Betting Market With Opening of Unibet Sportsbook

By Michael Peters

Fact Checked by Jim Tomlin

Turf Paradise Race Track officially joined the Arizona sports betting market Wednesday with the opening of its temporary retail sportsbook location.

The northeast Phoenix track is partnered with Unibet Arizona. Technical difficulties pushed back the original opening date by a week.

Turf Paradise received a limited sports betting operators license from the Arizona Department of Gaming in January. Turf Paradise was denied a mobile sports betting license in September, and its subsequent legal action was unsuccessful.

The launch comes at a great time for the track, as it embarks on its busiest stretch of the year. There are eight more live racing days during the track’s 2021-22 meet, including a special 11:30 a.m. post time May 7 for a card in advance of the Kentucky Derby.

“The Kentucky Derby is in itself the biggest day at the track,” Turf Paradise general manager Vincent Francia told BetArizona.com. “That we will be able to add betting choices via sports betting that are not offered via the pari-mutuel system, will only enhance the day.”

Turf Paradise Working on Permanent Sportsbook

Turf Paradise’s Unibet facility initially opened as a temporary space on the first floor of the grandstand in the Paddock Room, with a permanent facility coming to the banquet room on the third floor of the track.

For now, the facility will be open for sports betting from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday, and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on weekends, with adjusted hours during the fall for college and NFL football.

The retail sportsbook will feature six sports betting kiosks and a teller to help customers cash out, along with more than 20 televisions, according to a press release.

Unibet has a mobile Arizona betting apps license through its partnership with the Fort Yuma-Quechan Tribe. Unibet also operates a retail location at the tribe’s Paradise Casino in Yuma.

“We met with a number of providers,” Francia said. “Unibet was the best fit for us.”

Turf Paradise First Limited Operator to Open

Turf Paradise was one of 10 locations to receive a limited operator license from the ADG. All eight of Turf Paradise’s off-track-betting locations also received limited licenses and have partnered with Unibet. Francia said the eight OTB locations will start taking bets in May.

Arizona Downs received a limited license but hasn’t said who it might partner with or when it will begin taking sports wagers. Arizona Downs typically runs live races from late May through September.

Limited License Sportsbooks

  • Arizona Downs (TBA)
  • Gallagher’s Sports Grill – Baseline (Unibet)
  • Gallagher’s Sports Grill – 16th (Unibet)
  • Harold’s Restaurant Cave Creek (Unibet)
  • Midtown Tavern Sports Bar and Grill (Unibet)
  • Turf Paradise (Unibet)*
  • T. O’Sullivans Sports Grill (Unibet)
  • Boston’s Bar & Grille (Unibet)
  • Charlie’s Sports (Unibet)
  • Brookside II Sports Bar and Grill (Unibet)

* — Have launched operations

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WRITTEN BY
BetArizona.com
Michael Peters
Michael is a news editor for the Gambling.com Group, overseeing coverage at BetArizona.com. He spent nine years as the sports editor of the Tulsa World. Before that, he was the high school sports editor at the Houston Chronicle. He also has been the sports editor at the Beaumont Enterprise and Galveston County Daily News in Texas.
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Michael is a news editor for the Gambling.com Group, overseeing coverage at BetArizona.com. He spent nine years as the sports editor of the Tulsa World. Before that, he was the high school sports editor at the Houston Chronicle. He also has been the sports editor at the Beaumont Enterprise and Galveston County Daily News in Texas.
... Read More