Steve Bittenbender

Reporter: Steve Bittenbender

Subscribe to updates

Steve Bittenbender covers Midwest and Gulport news for He also specializes in sports betting and horse racing. Steve is a veteran reporter and brings more than two decades of experience covering sports, business and politics. He joined in 2019.

Steve has also covered major collegiate and professional sports for the Associated Press and the Louisville Courier-Journal and is frequently featured on local network TV newscasts and podcasts for his horse racing business and legislative expertise. A Reuters contributor, he has also previously served as editor for Government Security News.

Steve lives in Louisville, Kentucky -- the epicenter of the US horse racing industry -- with his wife and son. He is also an avid poker player, having learned from his uncle as a wholesome after-school pastime with cookies and milk.

Contact Steve at

Areas of Expertise

1569 stories by Steve Bittenbender

Chicago Area Grocer Shelved to Federal Prison for Bookmaking, Tax Evasion

A 63-year-old meat market owner from suburban Chicago was sentenced to a year in prison by a federal judge Monday for running an illegal bookmaking operation and failing to report nearly $4 million in income from the sports betting enterprise. Domenic Poeta...

Steve Bittenbender November 30, 2020

ZenSports Applies for Sports Betting Licenses in Tennessee and Virginia

ZenSports, which seeks to establish its sports betting marketplace in the United States, has filed for licenses Tennessee and Virginia. Company cofounder and CEO Mark Thomas said that the company will seek approval to offer its online marketplace, which is like a...

Steve Bittenbender November 30, 2020
Kentucky Derby

Bob Baffert’s Life is Good Leads the Pack in 2021 Kentucky Derby Futures Betting (VIDEO)

We’re still more than five months away from the 2021 Kentucky Derby, but it already seems like bettors have found their horse for next year’s Run for the Roses. Betting opened at noon ET Thursday at Churchill Downs on the first futures...

Steve Bittenbender November 29, 2020

Illinois Casinos Want Lawmakers To Take Up iGaming, Mobile Sports Betting Registration in 2021

As Illinois casinos enter their second week under Gov. J.B. Pritzker's closure order, signs point to the 10 gaming properties lobbying lawmakers for some more changes to state laws. Tom Swoik, the executive director of the Illinois Casino Gaming Association, told

Steve Bittenbender November 27, 2020
EBCI Snned

Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians Creating LLC to Pursue Commercial Casino Acquisitions

The Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians Tribal Council has funded the due diligence on its possible purchase of the Caesars Southern Indiana casino. But tribal council members also approved another initiative to help the nation expand into commercial gaming. At its Nov....

Steve Bittenbender November 27, 2020
Canadian sports betting

Liberals, Canada’s Ruling Party, File Bill to Eliminate Ban on Single-Game Sports Betting

The original sponsor of a bill to legalize single-game sports betting in Canada said he’s “skeptical,” but also “encouraged” by similar legislation the country’s Liberal Party government filed on Thursday That comment from MP Kevin Waugh (Conservative, Saskatoon-Grasswood) came as Canada’s Minister...

Steve Bittenbender November 26, 2020
Horseshoe Hammond

Indiana Gaming Officials Give Caesars Another Year to Find a Buyer for Horseshoe Hammond

Caesars Entertainment now has more time to sell its Horseshoe Hammond Casino in northwest Indiana. On Monday, the Indiana Gaming Commission extended the deadline to find a deal for the casino by a year, to Dec. 31, 2021. Horseshoe is one of...

Steve Bittenbender November 24, 2020
Spectacle Indiana investigation

Indiana Gaming Commission Expands Spectacle Probe, Action May Come Soon

The scope of the Indiana Gaming Commission’s investigation into Spectacle Entertainment has widened, Executive Director Sara Gonso Tait told commissioners Monday. As a result, the company that operates the Majestic Star Casinos and building a $300 million land-based replacement in Gary with...

Steve Bittenbender November 23, 2020
Scott Frost

New Podcast Series Highlights Diversity of Underground Gamblers, Shows Winning Traits

A new podcast series focuses on the lives of professional underground gamblers. The podcast goes inside the world of professional gambling and attempts to show what traits make these players successful. Gamblers is hosted by David Hill, a veteran writer on gambling....

Steve Bittenbender November 22, 2020
EBCI Caesars

Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians in Exclusive Window to Purchase Caesars Southern Indiana

Caesars Southern Indiana casino may soon find itself under new ownership. Earlier this month, the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians signed a letter of intent with Caesars Entertainment Inc. that gives the tribal nation an exclusive 45-day window to negotiate a purchase...

Steve Bittenbender November 22, 2020