Sports Betting In Colorado Sees Smooth Launch

Written By Ian St. Clair on 05/01/2020
Colorado sports betting

To get this out of the way, I have never gambled on sports.

Ever. As a Colorado native and current resident, it’s not as though I’ve had many opportunities to legally due so — until Friday, that is.

Needless to say, I fall into the same group as some in Colorado on this historic day of sports betting now officially being open for business — how the heck does this work?

As of 10 a.m. on Friday (May 1), users could choose between four apps to begin their wagering.

  • DraftKingspartner with Golden Mardi Gras
  • FanDuel — partner with Golden Gates Casino
  • BetMGM — partner with Midnight Rose Hotel and Casino
  • BetRivers — partner with J.P. McGill’s Hotel and Casino

App sign up

If you want to get any of the apps, you have to physically be within Colorado’s borders. If you’ve registered with any of the apps in another state, you can sign-in with your existing credentials. Same goes for the fantasy games if you have played them in the past.

At least for me, I encountered no issues registering.

It was a quick, good user experience. In fact, it took less than five minutes to enter my information, have my identity proven and get the account active.

New user Rosemarie Chostler of Denver said it’s great Colorado now offers sports betting.

“No problems so far,” she said. “I have only signed on, though. I haven’t made any bets yet but they all seem to be functioning very well. I’m accessing these sites from my Samsung Galaxy phone Android 9 and so far they all work great.”

Once you get active, the offers to get you started hit your inbox. All four apps offer some sort of bonus. In fact, the offers start before you even sign up.

Place your bets

Since sports remain on hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic, there aren’t many options but there are some out there:

  • Table tennis
  • Darts
  • International tennis series
  • Belarusian soccer
  • Nicaraguan soccer
  • Proposition bets on the NFL (NFL Rookie of the Year, for example)
  • Futures bets on the Denver Broncos, Colorado Avalanche, Colorado Rockies and Denver Nuggets
  • UFC 249

You could view this as a “soft open” for your sports betting experience.

Test the waters to see how the apps work and how to place wagers, and once the major sports return, you have a good feel for what you’re doing.

One of the other options to bet on is the weather.

Even though it is free, I would never wager on the weather in the Centennial State.

The joke in Colorado is: “If you don’t like the weather, wait five minutes and it’ll change.”

If this was an offer in San Diego, sign me up. Not in Colorado, because I would still find a way to lose.

“Snow in July?”

First bet in Colorado

BetRivers gets the distinction of being home to the first bet ever taken in Colorado.

It came courtesy of Colorado native and NBA great Chauncey Billups, who bet Broncos wide receiver Jerry Jeudy would win Rookie of the Year.

Needed distraction

On the first day of legal, regulated sports betting in Colorado, at least people had some form of distraction from the ongoing uncertainty from the coronavirus.

Whether new to the world of online gaming or experienced, users were given a stress-free, great user experience on Friday.

May Day was play day in Colorado.

“I’m very excited about it,” Chostler said. “I used to love going to the dog track, but since that’s out, I will be betting on the horses. Possibly football soon, too.”

As more Colorado sports fans get comfortable in the world of sports betting, we can all hope for a payday like the one handed out for placing a bet on the Broncos and Von Miller in Super Bowl 50.

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Ian St. Clair

Ian is an award-winning sports journalist and a University of Northern Colorado graduate. He’s a Colorado native and has over a decade of experience covering college and professional athletics. He broke into the gambling industry right as Colorado launched legal sports betting in 2020. Ian now manages the sites for some of the biggest gambling markets in North America and is an analyst for PlayColorado.

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