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Should Running Sports Embrace Sports Betting?

Wondering why running is not featured at many sportsbooks? Let’s take a look at why this sport is overlooked in the world of betting.

Should Running Sports Embrace Sports Betting?

When you access a sportsbook, you will find you can place wagers on all types of sports and events, but running is not one of them. While running sports can attract much attention and would be a popular market, there are some serious concerns about legalizing sports betting on running events. Many have argued that offering legal betting would cause corruption within the sport.

Professional running is popular in some countries, but it does not attract the same levels of media attention as other major professional sports. You can find hundreds of sports games supported at a sportsbook or online casino with Apple Pay, but running events are not on this list. This may also be one reason why there has been no push to offer legalized betting.

Limited Markets

One reason that running has not become one of the popular sports featured at sportsbooks is due to a lack of market coverage. Betting sites that do accept running bets will do so only for major events that are televised, such as the London Marathon or the Olympics. Not only are events limited, but the types of bets that are able to be placed are not as diverse as with other events. With running events, you will most likely only be able to place a bet on the overall winner of the race, or perhaps the top three finishers.

Public Awareness Lacks

Since running has very little media coverage or television coverage, there is a great lack of awareness among the public. Due to this, bettors have found that it is not as exhilarating to bet on a running event, and it can be difficult to watch a race. It is also hard to find stats that can offer an edge when choosing bets. The lack of coverage and information does not make running a good market to be featured at betting sites.

Compared to other sports that have daily games and multiple ways to wager, running is very limited. There are no set schedules or seasons. There may be a few major races and marathons around the world, but these come nowhere close to comparing to the options with other professional sports. Since there are fewer events and a lack of interest, bookmakers have not focused on adding running to their list of sports.

The Challenge of Odds

Betting on running or even on major marathons is not as simple as placing wagers on other sports. Due to the many more competitors involved and the equal statistics and performances, it is difficult for bookmakers to set odds for these events. Marathons will attract professional runners from all over the world, many of who have similar statistics, including overall performance stats as well as injuries. With so many similar runners, bookmakers would have to provide similar odds for many entrants in a race. This would not be beneficial since no one runner would be considered the favorite.


While running and athletics is surely a sport of endurance and strength, it provides little opportunity for wagering. With limited races, not much public knowledge, and hardly any media coverage, running events are seldom popular despite the thousands of entrants involved. In the world of betting, people tend to wager on more popular sports where games are played regularly and there are updated stats and competitive odds. This all lacks with running, which is the main reason that you will most likely not see any major betting sites highlighting these events for betting. Unfortunately, these athletes do not attract the fan base needed for this sport to be a profitable one for any bookmaker.

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