Mountaineer Casino, Racetrack & Resort now taking sports bets

NEW CUMBERLAND, W.Va. (WTRF) - If you're feeling lucky this weekend, Mountaineer Casino Racetrack and Resort is officially open for sports betting on college and pro sports. 

The casino celebrated the opening of its sportsbook operation with a ribbon cutting ceremony on Wednesday morning. 

Moments later the very first sports bet was placed by someone very familiar to the casino. His name is Nunzio Veltry of Weirton and he said he was thrilled to be the first. 

"I worked here for 11 years as a casino host and I was honored," Veltry said. "Honored to do the first bet." 

 And just in cases your wonder who Nunzio put his money on. 

"I stayed local," he said. "Local and some favorite teams. I just bet the Steelers, the Browns for the pros and the college teams I bet West Virginia, Ohio State. A four-team parlay." 

General Manager Bill Winkelried expects that both the casino and the local community will benefit from sports betting. 

"Obviously the more people that come in the more tax money that goes into the surrounding area as well as more jobs," Winkelried continued. 

The casino has already added fifteen new jobs as a direct result of the new sportsbook and Winkelried said he is hoping for even more in the near future. 

"The bars and the restaurants as we get busier will be adding the staff as well," he added. 

"I started working here when table games came in and it was big energy," Veltry said. "The revenue should pick up and that's a good thing for Mountaineer and the Valley." 

West Virginia lawmakers approved sports betting for the state's five casinos earlier this year .

The  Mountain State then officially became part of the sports betting industry in September when The Hollywood Casino at Charles Town Races opened it's sportsbook operation.

Delaware, Nevada, New Jersey and Mississippi also currently allow sports betting. 

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