Place your bets: NASCAR pushes its chips on sports gambling

Published 8:20 am Wednesday, February 13, 2019

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (AP) — Brendan Gaughan is the son of a casino magnate and has long grasped the allure of throwing down a few bucks to wager on a sporting event.

Heck, Gaughan once bet on himself in Las Vegas to win the 2004 Daytona 500. Gaughan got a stern talking to from NASCAR back in the day when gambling was perhaps the most taboo topic in sports. March Madness brackets, Super Bowl prop bets, they all go hand-in-hand with the biggest games as much as the highlights, but wagers on the upstart underdog or 5-1 favorite were saved for Vegas, office pools and the neighborhood bookie operating illegally.

But societal attitudes — and more to the point, laws — toward betting have evolved, leading even sports leagues to loosen their stances as a new world of potential partnerships and revenue streams has opened.

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