TwinSpires Preparing to Cease Ops in its Three Last States

Operator is “in the process of closing down” operations in Arizona, Michigan, & Pennsylvania. Previous shutdowns show players will have about one month to withdraw their funds.
A shop window is seen with a retro-styled "Sorry we're closed" sign hanging in it. TwinSpires Preparing to Cease Ops in its Three Last States
Tim Mossholder, unsplash
By
July 11, 2022

We are in the process of closing down. At this time, NJ, IN, CO, and TN have been closed, and we are looking at dates for MI, PA, and AZ at this time TwinSpires is making final preparations to cease operations in three of the last states where it is still active — Arizona, Michigan, and Pennsylvania.

On Friday, a customer service representative with the operator confirmed its exit from online casino gaming and sports betting — first announced by its parent company, Churchill Downs Incorporated (CDI), in late February — was entering the final stages.

“We are in the process of closing down,” the representative told US Gaming Review on Friday. “At this time, NJ, IN, CO, and TN have been closed, and we are looking at dates for MI, PA, and AZ at this time. Once we receive [dates for the final states], we will reach out to our players with more information.”

When pressed for additional information, the representative said she could not share any further details but advised that past shutdowns in four other states — Colorado, Indiana, New Jersey, and Tennessee — could serve as a guide.

“We are only able to provide that progressive slots [in Michigan] will be shutting down on July 31,” the representative said. It wasn’t clear if the July 31 deadline also applied in Arizona and Pennsylvania.

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CDI said it wants to exit the US online casino and sports betting markets to focus exclusively on horse racing. But the parent company said it plans to retain retail sportsbooks in places where they have been profitable.

At the beginning of the drawdown, TwinSpires operated online casinos in three states and sportsbooks in 12 — of which three states were retail-only, six were online-only, and three were both types.

CDI declined several messages seeking comment on its remaining drawdowns.

Possible Timeframe for Final Shutdowns

Only TwinSpires and CDI know precisely when the former’s operations will end in Arizona, Michigan, and Pennsylvania. But some information can be inferred from the four states where it has already ceased operations — Colorado, Indiana, New Jersey, and Tennessee.

After TwinSpires announced it would stop accepting wagers in those four states, it gave its players between 30 and 45 days to withdraw funds from their accounts. In each state, TwinSpires said that any remaining funds left after the withdrawal deadline would be returned through a mailed check within 30 days.

TwinSpires first folded up its tent in Tennessee, the only state where it wasn’t required to have a partnership with a land-based casino to operate. It stopped accepting wagers in the Volunteer State on March 16 and gave its players 45 days, until April 30, to withdraw their funds.

The operator next folded up shop in Colorado and Indiana. TwinSpires stopped accepting wagers in both states on May 16 and gave its players until June 15 to withdraw funds from their accounts, giving them a 30-day grace period.

In New Jersey, TwinSpires Sportsbook NJ stopped accepting sports wagers on June 10, the same day that TwinSpires Casino NJ ceased its operations outright. Players in both verticals had until Monday (July 11) to withdraw their funds — 31 days after it stopped accepting sports bets.

Shutdowns Not Coming in Chronological Order of Launch

CDI appears to be shutting down TwinSpires in states with smaller populations first, rather than in the order by which the states launched — except for New Jersey. It entered all seven states in 2021.

TwinSpires in Michigan launched first on February 2 of that year. The launch in Tennessee came next, on March 18. CDI launched TwinSpires in Indiana and Pennsylvania on April 20 and in Colorado three days later.

Arizona saw TwinSpires launch on September 16. New Jersey saw the last launch on December 2.

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