US sports betting giant DraftKings has announced a new agreement with the country’s top-tier stock car racing series Nascar that has opened the door for the gambling firm to begin operations in the US state of North Carolina.

Although the deal still needs to be ratified by the state’s regulators and licensing commission, once approved it will mean that DraftKings and NASCAR will collaborate in the state to offer sportsbook services to customers.

The state will be the 27th different US stated that DraftKings is authorized to operate in, once the deal is ratified.

The tie-up also sees the two companies collaborate in the fantasy gaming space, with DraftKings becoming Nascar’s official exclusive daily fantasy sports partner across the US and Canada.

As an authorized gaming operator of Nascar, the company will gain access to sponsorship incentives and co-promotional deals.

Joe Solosky, Nascar managing director, stated of the new tie-up: “DraftKings has a proven track record of enhancing the fan experience across sports.”

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“We are thrilled to continue working with DraftKings to deliver Nascar fans more engagement opportunities and bring its leading mobile sportsbook to North Carolina.”

DraftKings North America president Matt Kalish added: “DraftKings and Nascar have collaborated closely with each other over the years, sharing a like-minded commitment to enhancing the fan experience. We look forward to the next chapter in our journey together and offering our leading mobile sportsbook to fans in the state of North Carolina.”

Amid falling viewership in its 2023 season, Nascar has heightened its sports betting commitments as more and more US states open up to sports betting legalization.

In August 2023, the racing series announced a four-year partnership expansion with Sportradar, the international sports data company, to include betting data rights.

The partnership sees Sportradar furnish Nascar’s digital media partners with statistics and timings, with a stated aim of “driving the continued growth of betting on the sport.”

The stock car racing series made its foray into legal sports gambling in September 2020 when it became the first league to partner with the American Gaming Association (AGA). 

Since then, it is claimed that sports betting on Nascar has increased exponentially as betting operators saw a 51.5% increase in the total amount of money wagered on the series in 2022 compared to the previous year.

Alongside DraftKings, Nascar is also partnered with  BetMGM, PENN Entertainment, and FanDuel, with the latter partnering with the series in 2023.