Wednesday, 29 April 2009

still in the dark ages in Ireland

It's the Punchestown Festival this week, which if you've never been, is most certainly worth a visit. Only problem is, it's about an hour from Dublin, there are too few places to stay nearby and that one hour drive in Festival week is more likely to turn into three hours on Irish roads.

Two big stories this week - firstly, how earth did Dunguib start at 10/11 today in the Bumper? It touched 2.2 on Betfair and absolutely tanked in. Unbelievably high cruising speed, I really hope he can jump for next season.

The story in tomorrow's Racing Post will be about the pathetic bluff of Irish bookies and the lack of spine from Punchestown racecourse in bowing to their demands. Betfair have spent plenty on sponsorship there this week, with the trailer in attendance and big screens on the in-field showing the live Betfair prices, in direct competition with the 180+% trash that Irish bookies continue to get away with.

First race of the Festival, bookmakers threaten to stand down if the course don't pull the plug on the prices. Has there even been a more hollow threat? It's Festival time, as if all these bookies would miss out on the 'bonanza'. Let them sweat it for one race, and they'd all be back in a hurry, if they even did follow through with it.

Punchestown management showed less spine than Gordon Brown and backed down straight away. So much for honouring a deal with sponsors and understanding exactly what controversy it would bring. Oh well, good luck finding another sponsor then, how many races do the local bookies sponsor? If they continue to serve up 180% markets, and hypocritically all have betting exchange accts at the same time, then they deserve to be shown up as thieves....

It's 2009 - protectionism is long gone and competition is now how the world of business works.

Tuesday, 28 April 2009

South Africa to make token gambling licensing effort

Like most countries, South Africa are concerned about their citizens spending their money offshore, particularly on gambling sites. It's not as if they are against gambling, after all, the horse racing industry is quite strong there, there are numerous sports and racing bookmakers and they have some massive casinos there. But of course, it's evil if the tax revenue is going abroad.

I assume the licensing is meant for online casinos, this snippet from the article certainly makes it seem that way. Pointless having these restrictions for a sports or racing betting operation.

South Africa: Authorities to Regulate Online Gambling

Under the proposed regulations South Africans wanting to play online will have to open a nominated account with any South African bank which will be used solely for online gaming.

Only credit cards can be used to make payments and the accounts will have to adhere to normal banking and Financial Intelligence Centre Act requirements.

"We will work together with the banks and Reserve Bank to monitor the accounts and players will not be permitted to have more than R20000 (about £1575) in their accounts at any point," says Moja.

Monday, 27 April 2009

match-fix alert in Conference football

Blue Square and William Hill are reporting suspicious betting patterns on yesterday's Grays Athletic v Forest Green match in the Blue Square Premier League (Conference). According to Sky Sports News, one-sided betting action came for Grays to win the match after trailing at half-time. They trailed 0-1 at the break. The spokesman for William Hill the firm doesn't have a problem taking strong business on one outcome, when it is to exclusion of all others, then something is a bit suspicious. The story of the match was a penalty conceded jsut before half-time, then two goals in a minute after the break, and 'not one shot shot on goal in the final twenty minutes'. A little suspicious....

Further details here from SportingLife

Neither firm has settled bets on the match yet, pending further investigation.

Betting on end-of-season matches is always fraught with danger for bookies - look at the Accrington Stanley v Bury match last year or the plethora of matches with odds-on draws in Serie A or Serie B in the last couple of months of the season...

Saturday, 25 April 2009

F1 preview Bahrain

Here's a link to my post-qualifying update. The early value on Hamilton looks to have been snapped up already, but most of the Aus bookies won't price up until morning.

If you think the race weights make a difference (you get to work out when the teams are planning on their first pitstop and thus strategy around that), then the official list is here.

sponsorship in Australian racing has never been better

Betfair's sponsorship of racing in Australia now totals over 20 tracks in three states with this venture into South Australia.

Betfair seals sponsorship of SA Derby

Other firms have been getting into the act too - Centrebet and Sportingbet have sponsored quite a few races as well.

But of course, NSW racing misses out because of an anti-competitive exclusivity arrangement between Racing NSW and Tabcorp. No wonder racing people are struggling north of the Murray River...

Friday, 24 April 2009

another nail in the coffin of Racing NSW

Racing NSW supremo, or should I say, head muppet, Peter V'Landys, has banked his reputation and the future of the NSW racing industry on winning the race fields legislation against Betfair and corporate bookmakers in Australia. The issue - paying for the right to use Racing NSW information to take bets on NSW racing. Nobody is disputing the fact that the body that runs the show deserves to be paid by companies making money from it. The issue is how much and what is fair.

Australia has two main states of racing - Victoria and New South Wales. NSW might have a bigger population but their racing isn't on a par with Victoria. When Takeover Target won last weekend on Doncaster Handicap day, it was a feat worthy of being cheered on by 40,000 people at least. They didn't even get 20 thousand on Sydney's second or third biggest raceday of the year - pathetic.

Racing Victoria sets the standard in Australia - better prizemoney, bigger fields, better crowds, racing not as dominated by two stables, and a greater chunk of the betting (38% v 28%). Racing Victoria consulted a few lawyers who knew their stuff and decided they couldn't charge whatever they wanted for their racing data. They couldn't discriminate in favour of their good friend Tabcorp (now employing an equally incompetent muppet called Robert "I will cancel the spring carnival if it means keeping Betfair out of Australia" Nason, ex-Racing Victoria CEO), they had to set a fee which was equitable to all and not a rate which would automatically send some competitors they weren't in bed with broke.

Racing Vic went for a gross profits fee from betting firms, rather than a turnover tax which not only defies every other business model in the world, but also heavily favours the fat margins, auto profits of Tabcorp. Was this the outcome they wanted? Not a chance, it was what the law demanded. You cannot exclude competition by charging a fee favourable to your mates, and not to the companies you don't like.

This week, the Australian High Court brought down a ruling that copyright over data which isn't particularly valuable is worthless.

Racing Copyright on Thin Ice

The author of this article knows his business law and how it fits with racing. Owners and other stakeholders in NSW racing should be screaming at this idiot V'Landys to stop pissing money up the wall and get on with it. The betting firms are willing to pay a fair fee, but he's more interested in going to court in the vain hope that he and his band of cronies will be proved correct against anyone who has bothered to read the relevant legislation. Racing NSW has already applied to have the case thrown out, which was laughed off by the court and costs were imposed on Racing NSW. You'd think that might ring some alarm bells, but no. The NSW court has also criticised them heavily for not meeting deadlines in responding to the court action.

The chances of Racing NSW winning this case?

Racing NSW win - 10.00
Racing NSW lose - 1.05

Betfair have run rings around every crusty old body in Australia who have tried to force them out by favouring the monopoly. Don't these idiots understand the importance of recent form??

power of the punter - week four

This week the HANA guys have switched attention to a Saturday race, the $100,000 Pretty Jenny Stakes at Hawthorne Park. This time no pool is nominated, so you can take your pick across the board.

for free form and more details - visit the HANA site

match-fixing not so rare according to The Independent

An article today in The Independent, one of the better British newspapers more focussed on fact than sensationalism like the red-top tabloids, delving deeper into the Accrington Stanley v Bury betting scam last year.

Betting scam is 'just the tip of the iceberg'

... Yet in a candid admission of how impotent the FA is in potential match-fixing cases, an informed source has told The Independent that the FA "is highly unlikely to charge a player with match-fixing" and will not do so in this case. Match-fixing is simply too hard to prove, to specific legal satisfaction, whereas infringements of football's own betting rules are more clear-cut and more likely to end in convictions, though the matter remains within the sport's governing body.

The only scenario where the FA can envisage match-fixing charges would be if a whistle-blower, involved in a crime, admitted it and implicated others. That remains unlikely.

-----

Bets, files and videotape - inside the Stanley sting

Criminal cases rely on the elimination of all doubt, whereas as a civil case just has to sway a judge or jury that it was more likely than not. Perhaps one day someone with a lot of time and money who has been shafted will take matters into their own hands and take it to court. Otherwise, the match-fix allegations are too hard to prove, desptie the fact, that in this case, the evidence is BLOODY OBVIOUS!

IPL action

My turn on the preview rota tomorrow for the Bangalore v Punjab game.

Read the article here.

The market now has Punjab favourite which astounds me. Their bowling is terrible...

Tuesday, 21 April 2009

Canada to get legalised online gambling?

The province of Nova Scotia is obviously broke so they're considering licensing online betting. The journo that wrote this though has no idea about online gambling though - apparently Americans are going to drive across the border to place an online bet! I'd better set up an internet cafe right on the border to cash in!

Canada may get online gambling

Canada had better implement a better system of regulation and enforcement regarding problem gambling though, this is a farce.

Little sympathy for adults not taking responsibility for their own actions, these people have families who are well aware of their problems so why sit back and watch? But I have just as little for companies who pay lip service to the problem with a self-exclusion policy which is utterly useless. Problem gambling and the irresponsible actions of companies supposedly trying to stop it tarnishes the entire industry. Governments can't sit back and reap the tax revenue without creating the regulatory infrastructure for the protection of problem gamblers. They are just as guilty as the greedy corporations....

NZTAB appoints new CEO

New Zealand Racing Board appoints new chief exec

New Zealand Racing Board chairman Michael Stiassny today announced the appointment of Andrew Brown as the Board’s new chief executive.

Mr Brown originates from Australia but has worked in the UK for the past 13 years. He has practised as a lawyer and a management consultant in Sydney, London and Paris. He was also Business Development Director of ITV Plc, Britain’s largest commercial TV broadcaster.

Mr Brown brings a wealth of experience of the racing industry from his most recent position as Chief Operating Officer of Racecourse Media Group, where he founded and ran Racing UK, Turf TV, Racing International and thebettingsite.co.uk website to deliver significant profits for British racing.

He holds an MBA from INSEAD in France, as well as a Bachelor of Laws, Master of Laws and a Bachelor of Science from Sydney University.

====

The New Zealand TAB and NZ Racing Board are one in the same as the industry controls the betting there, no sign of any competition, although it will be interesting to hear his thoughts on Betfair considering his experience in the UK and in modern business with competition.

Saturday, 18 April 2009

latest betting previews

Got a few articles up on Betting@Betfair this week..

F1 post-qualifying preview, very keen on the two bets listed.

Deccan Chargers IPL - don't read too much into this one, all the writers drew straws for a team and had to make a case for them. I have backed Herschelle Gibbs at 25/1 each-way for Top Runscorer though.

NRL Round 6 form (no byline)

Thursday, 16 April 2009

shoddy bookmaker alert

bwin have been hammered for closing accts and poor customer service over the years. They even have a rule buried deep in their T&Cs prohibiting accounts from employed at other firms. But this one has to take the cake. The punter wins €2000 and then the bookmaker says 'sorry, we shouldn't have offered these bets to you in the first place'.

There's no comeback for this. The punter has done nothing wrong, and bwin have remote staff based in Australia trading live on AFL and NRL matches. If that is not deliberately targetting Australian clients to bet in-running, then I don't know what is. Conveniently hiding behind rules to suit themselves, they know damn well what they are doing is wrong, but also that the Australian government will never prosecute a firm based overseas anyway. Every UK bookmaker offers betting in-running to Aussies, the only firm who restricts is Betfair because they hold an Australian licence.

read the thread from OLBG - bwin shafts punter

Pure scam and punters should never let bookies get away with pathetic actions like this. Let's see if the gaming authority in Gibraltar has any balls....

UPDATE 17/4/09 - it appears as if Bwin have caved in and will pay the punter out after both the Gibraltar authorities and SportsbookReview were contacted to get involved.

Bwin still remain a bookmaker to steer well clear of. They have an enormous range of markets but with ridiculously high margins, and won't hesitate to cut you off if you dare to win a few times...

Wednesday, 15 April 2009

the IPL approaches

The mad crash and bash of the Indian Premier League cricket starts on Saturday with two matches. Last year it was new and innovative. This year it's a second series, played outside of India because of security issues and it's just before the Ashes. Just how big will it be? At least this time, there should be decent lighting and far less smog to deal with which makes watching cricket under lights in India very hard to watch.

Catch the action on Setanta Sports in the UK or via live streaming on the IPL website.

For betting on these games, you need at least three different options:

Betfair - that's a no-brainer.

SportingIndex - plenty of additional options with spread betting.

Cricketbetlive - specialist cricket bookie licensed in Australia and the UK, offering a lot of variety in markets (moving run lines etc), tight margins (the only bookies anywhere to show the market %!) and they cater for pros. You won't get any of the "you can have a maximum of five pounds on that sir" service from them - pity they don't do more sports in that regard! They might be new in the UK, but have been operating in Australia for a decade.

Also, a key point to remember: make sure you are familiar with the rules of every firm you bet with. Betfair will void all bets on ties. Cricketbetlive will bet to the rules of the Indian bookie. Spread firms have different markets, different rules. Other bookies will vary on different markets... and that applies to just about every sport.

Monday, 13 April 2009

big names of Vegas in serious trouble

Anyone wanna buy a cheap casino? Some of the big names in Las Vegas got a bit ahead of themselves with grandiose plans for huge new resorts, and now they are seriously short of cash.

World Series of Poker Sponsor Harrah's Cash Flow a Problem

$9 billion development on verge of failing

MGM Casinos To Go Bankrupt?

power of the punter - week three

This time the focus is on Mountaineer Park, the perfecta pool (also known as exacta or forecast depending on where you live).

HANA is going to play Race 3 at Mountaineer on Tuesday April 14th.

Formsheets etc available later.

Came close last week, would prefer they did it on the pools with a bigger chance of a large payout, but I suppose they need to spread it around.

Some of the takeout percentages in North American racing - here's a list of just how bad some of them are

Saturday, 11 April 2009

Future of the Betting Show in doubt

I've been to this event numerous times and to be fair, I'm hardly surprised. It's all for the betting shop industry which is tired and stale.

Betting Show future in jeopardy after exodus

THE future of the bookmaking industry’s annual shop window, the Betting Show, has been thrown into doubt by the exit of three of the biggest exhibitors from this year’s event, due to be held at the NEC Birmingham from October 14-15.

---

It's mighty expensive to run a stand there, it's trade only and very little business gets done anymore. Hard to justify that sort of expense in tight economic times...

Friday, 10 April 2009

Russian biathletes failing more drug tests

Breaking story again in biathlon. The Russians are still in the news despite the season having just finished.

Two more Russian biathletes are alleged to have failed drug tests, for the same substance which caught three of them back in February. This time it is believed to be one man and one woman, from testing at the Russian National Championships.

According to Norwegian press sources, the positive tests have been confirmed by French testing officials.

If this is true, will the Russians actually have anyone left to compete in Vancouver for the Winter Olympics? The sad fact is that biathlon needs Russia so even if the IBU had the power to kick them out completely, it's highly unlikely they would. But every Russian biathlete from here on is massively tainted by the actions of their peers and team entourage.

The amazing part of this story is that the cheats were caught at a local event, and apparently, by a Russian agency.

Perhaps they are getting serious after all.

UPDATE - Named athletes are believed to be Andreij Prokunin and Veronika Timofeeva, not competitors that many will know. Sacrificial lambs to show that Russia are allegedly taking drug testing seriously, or to throw the IBU and WADA off the scent?

Tasmanian govt to change wagering taxes to create more jobs

Interesting times in Tasmania. Not only did they break ranks and license Betfair, much to the annoyance of all the Aus mainland states, now they have the Tas Tote up for sale and are looking at completely restructuring the tax regime in order to create more jobs. Tasmania has quite high unemployment and faces an exodus of youth each year as teenagers finish school and head to Melbourne or Sydney usually to study or find work.


Tote Tasmania Sale Looks To Raise Over A$200m


The government has also suggested the ending of wagering taxes on pari-mutuel and fixed-odds betting. Like Betfair, Tote Tasmania will now run under the aegis of the Tasmanian Gaming Commission.

Coleman said the new regime would ensure the growth and profitability of Tote Tasmania while providing a secure future for the Tasmanian racing industry. “The legislative package released today shows that Tasmania supports business and offers an innovative and well-regulated environment in which to operate a successful business.”

Tasmania Treasurer Michael Aird said the privatisation of Tote Tasmania was designed to attract new offshore and domestic investment and create jobs to benefit the Tasmanian economy. Said Aird: “The government is confident that the quality of the Tote Tasmania business, and the competitive tax and licence regime, will generate strong buyer interest. The reforms outlined today will further enhance its value and increase its appeal to potential buyers both outside and inside Australia.”

Thursday, 9 April 2009

US govt finding more ways to fund bailouts of bad investment firms

Easy - settle with companies who have been making money out of US poker players for years! Party Gaming are first, what will happen for 888 and Sportingbet who are also in 'negotations'?

It's Official: Party, Feds Do $105 Million Deal

Ah, America. A land where everything can be fixed with a chequebook...

yeah, that'll work....

Idiot politicians are born everyday. Now it's Ireland's turn....

Ireland's Sports Minister Threatens Online Betting Ban

Free trade, EU laws and an ever-growing preference for sports betting rather than racing are just some of the reasons this will never work. Irish bookies are already looking at sending their non-shop operations offshore because of the harsh tax regime. Threatening people with a big stick and trying to makes thnigs illegal only makes people more inclined to do it, especially with Ireland's broadband penetration growing.

Wincanton's good for it too...



Just a dabble on this one with one price, max risk of £3.40, and four of them got matched! Had I gone the whole hog like the previous race at Folkestone, it would have been another jackpot.

Think I might quit while I'm ahead and watch the cricket now...

Folkestone - great track for laying the field



Brilliant!

Folkestone is quite undulating and horses often run down both sides of the straight track. I usually find six furlongs a little short to get many matched, but this time, I got one matched at the 1.07 which brought the big result :)

This link explains the strategy with a video clip
as well, I've just repeated it several times over in the same race. Much better to use software to do it as well, rather than typing them all ineach time.

Wednesday, 8 April 2009

the AFL calls for Australians to be allowed to be in-play

About bloody time! Complete farce that this law was brought in in the first place (simply to appease the anti-gambling crusaders while the evil pokies and casinos continued to wreak havoc on families), now a body with some credibility, rather than just the betting firms themselves is joining the call for change.

AFL calls for in-play ban to be repealed

Such restrictions don't exist in any other country and have sent quite a few punters to live in other countries so they can ply their trade. Betting in-play actually allows people to trade smarter, locking in profits or taking a loss when things start going against them, rather than being stuck with a position they can't change during an event.

AFL and cricket are two of the best sports going for in-play betting.

lay the field - my favourite racing strategy



Dabbling with laying the field in-running at various prices today, not just one price, but several in the same race. Got several matched in the previous race at Brighton, then this race came along at Nottingham. Such a long straight at Nottingham makes punters often over-react and think the finish line is closer than it actually is. As you can see by the number of bets matched, there was plenty of volatility in this in-play market. It's rare you'll get a complete wipe-out with one horse getting matched at all levels, but it can happen, so don't give yourself too much risk...

Tuesday, 7 April 2009

Tampa Pick 3 tips

Sorry for being so late..

R6 - 1,2,3,4

R7 - 2,3,6

R8 - 1,3,4

Favs and some value in there as well...


UPDATE

Copped the winner (#3) in the first leg (matched at 100 on Betfair), but unfortunately the fav got flattened in the second leg, so we came 2nd and 3rd in that. 16/1 shot won that, whoever lands this pool will get a massive collect!

FINAL UPDATE

Got the last leg as well (#4 at 8/1). Pick 3 paid $14971 for a $2 unit. So close, but naturally it would have been about 1/10th of that if we'd got the middle leg.

Backed the two winners so can't complain too much. Bring on the next one I say!

Fonud out tonight that Stan James and BoyleSports do not offer the exotic pools such as Pick 3, but Ladbrokes do. VCBet also do, but darned if I could get it to work....

football betting scandal

The FA haven't called this match-fixing YET but when a bunch of players bet against their team and they are in the match, well that's what it is.

Players charged over gambling

An investigation into a betting scandal has led to charges against four players for staking thousands of pounds on their own team to lose.

A fifth player has also been charged by the Football Association for breaching betting rules over the same game - Accrington Stanley v Bury in Coca-Cola League Two in May last year.

An FA statement said: "All five are alleged to have placed bets on Bury to win this match. Mannix is alleged to have placed stakes to the value of approximately £4,000; Mangan £3,500; Harris £2,000; Williams £1,000; and Cavanagh on a £5 accumulator."

--

Rumours about this match being suspicious had been around for quite a while.

Throw the book at them. This isn't an innocent £5 bet, this is organised deceit of the club, fans, bookmakers and other punters.

Three players in the Australian A-League were caught and penalised last season for small bets in games they weren't playing in. But this is chalk and cheese. Would you want a guy playing for your club who is prepared to put a month's wages or more on the team not winning?

Monday, 6 April 2009

power of the punter - day two

Tomorrow the attention turns to Tampa Bay for the racing Buycott on US Racing.

Here's the drill from the Horseplayers Association of North America (HANA).

If you're in the UK, you can bet with most bookmakers as they bet directly into the American pools. In Australia, you can bet via a UK bookie or via the service from Racingandsports.

Take advantage of the free formguides and ratings on the HANA site. Don't bet blind, it's not a donation. And don't just bet into any pool, it's a specific pick 3 (treble) starting from Race 6. With a big pool involved, there could be some decent value pop up.

Punters deserve respect from the folks controlling racing and betting. Too often we are pushed and shoved around because most punters are apathetic. Without showing resistance, what is to stop tracks/bookie/totes pushing their margins up and service levels down?

This is one time it's actually worth supporting the Yanks! :)

I'll have a look at the fields tonight/early tomorrow and put up some selections.

Saturday, 4 April 2009

"greatest ever" day for British bookies

Well, it's a hardly a surprise when Mon Mome, a 100/1 shot, wins the Grand National!

Bookies toast 'best ever' National day

Congratulations to Venetia Williams and all her team. She is a fantastic trainer. And for the lad, Liam Treadwell, who rode the winner at his first ride in the race - enjoy the moment, because the rest of your life is probably going to be an anti-climax!

Update - having 66/1 shots win the final two races made this the bonanza of all time for bookies today....

F1 action in Malaysia

Another column I'm doing this week.

Malaysian GP Betting: Button eyes the victory but can he survive the storms?

Should be a great race, I love it when rain turns a procession into complete chaos :)

my throw of the darts today

The Grand National is as hard a race to decipher as you'll ever find, here's my shot at it.

State of Play
Offshore Account
Ollie Magern
Silver Birch
My Will
Rambling Minster


Remember that Boylesports are betting six places each-way and Victor Chandler are giving out free bets if you back a faller.

Good luck!

trading techniques

I posted about market efficiency a couple of months back, but never followed up on it.

Here is an excellent collection of articles about stock market trading, with a lot of relevant lessons.

Brett Steenberger's trading blog

Topics include market efficiency, principles of short-term trading, what to look for in a flat market and many, many more.

Golden Slipper advice

Very tough at Rosehill on a wet track, the undercard has already had two 25/1 winners and nothing has won at under 6/1.

I like two colts, Reward for Effort (#2) and Manhattan Rain (#3), but realistically, the rain and horses running wide, as they always do at Rosehill when it rains, makes it wide open. The exotic pools will be huge on the race, so have a crack at a trifecta or First 4, it promises to be a big dividend.

If you lay the two favs, Real Saga and More Joyous, you'll get about 1.6 for 'the field'.

The Golden Slipper is the world's richest 2yo race, worth AU$5 million, and is Sydney's rival to the Melbourne Cup.

Friday, 3 April 2009

advice for betting on Grand National Day

1. Don't go overboard, it's the biggest race of the year in profile, but you can win just as much on the race before it or even a weak seller at Lingfield next week.

2. 40 horses over four and a half miles and lots of fences means your horse will need luck to win. Luck not to be taken out by a faller, luck not to be taken out by a riderless horse and luck to stay up when it clips the top of a fence.

3. Bet early - once the bookies at the track take over the market, the percentage will get wound right up to 140%+. Tonight and tomorrow morning, you'll get a lot, lot better than that by shopping around.

4. Check out the offers available - Victor Chandler will give you a free bet if you back a horse that falls. Boylesports are paying 1/4 the odds and SIX places.

5. Visit my free bets site to take advantage of the bonuses - Betfreebies

Good luck, I'll post a bit later with some tips for the Grand National and the world's richest two-year-old race, the Golden Slipper from Rosehill, Sydney, which takes place overnight UK time.

Nadal burned at 1.01!



Rafa Nadal, superhero. Well, a few punters might not be thinking that tonight.

del Potro, having not won a set against the top three players before in abotu 8 matches, led by a set and a break, before Nadal fought back to a set all.

Nadal then led 3-0 in the final set with two breaks. And that's when the money buyers would have stepped in. £421k at 1.01. OUCH!

(Image shows percentage view, not prices)

Thursday, 2 April 2009

power of the punter part II

On Tuesday April 7, it goes to Tampa Bay Downs, a track which is available to international punters via UK bookies betting into the pools.

More details here - HANA

Note, it's about betting in a specific pool, not any race or any bet type. But don't just donate randomly, do the form for the race, and make use of the form links from the HANA site nearer the date.

Great cause and it does have meaning to people outside the US as well.

Wednesday, 1 April 2009

Sportingbet to sponsor Wolves

Sportingbet take a fairly safe gamble on Wolves lasting the pace and being promoted to the Premier League next season.

Sportingbet to sponsor Wolves Football Club

So in the English leagues, that makes:

Betfair (Fulham 2002/3)
888 (formerly Boro)
Bet24 (Blackburn)
SBOBet (West Ham 2008/9 after XL Airways collapsed)
32 Red (formerly Villa)
Mansion (Spurs)

(Feel free to add more in the comments please)

and then there's Real Madrid and AC Milan being sponsored by bwin.

Anti-gambling crusaders say it's a bad thing for the sport etc... the funny thing is that after Manchester United knocked back a deal from a gambling company, who did they go with? AIG who are turning out to be one of the biggest corporate crooks in the world!!

April Fools Day jokes

Betfair to charge per trade - Don'tgiveupyourdayjob

Bookmaker wants money back on Wales v Ireland game - PaddyPower

BetAngel to sponsor Grand National - BetAngel

Track to drop the tote pool takeout percentages - Cangamble

And many more away from the industry - Guardian to stop printing


I'd come up with something but I left my run a bit late....

Twenty ticks in five minutes


I've seen markets move a few ticks (a tick = one price movement, eg 1.87 to 1.86) in the opening minutes, but this is ridiculous.

Australia v Uzbekistan, live on Eurosport and around Australia. Two mins before the match, under 2.5 goals was 1.78 (where the last big grey column is on the graph). At 4:50 gone, the price had collapsed to 1.58! That's twenty ticks in under five minutes! Money for jam if you know what you're doing and don't get too greedy.

Six minutes later and the price change had slowed down, to only 1.5.

Gambling Commission says no to banning in-running betting

This was always going to happen, but until a government body actually says it's complete, you can't be sure.

UK's In-Running Betting Study sees no evidence for policy change

I believe the study came as a result of moaning and whingeing from Henry Spurway, the operator of the first in-running trading room in Scotland several years ago. Spurway had a failed business model, earning only from a small cut on bets placed in his shop, rather than charging for daily access to a computer terminal and fast pictures like the current venues do. When Spurway came to the realisation that he couldn't make it work, he then made it his mission to shut down Betfair like a bitter, twisted man.

Call to ban in-running betting

A cheat's paradise

Objection to Betfair

If the guy couldn't realise that there were others out there trying to make money and be faster than him, then he needs his head read. The shop also encouraged punters to sign up and bet in-running, but gave no help in actually understanding how the complicated exchange platform worked. I've spoken to a few punters who did their conkers at Easibet because they didn't understand unmatched bets stayed in the system. Greed without the sense to actually investigate how it all worked... a dangerous combination.

Bookmakers always had the information advantage over punters, now the tide has turned. If punters can't work out that there are delays in broadcasting (the simple process of digital technology dictates there must be delays along the journey), particularly when there are warnings in bold on the screen (if you don't read the warnings, then it's your own bloody fault), then they are likely to lose their money.

It's all about timing. Betting in the first couple of furlongs of a race makes little difference re delays, if you want to bet in the dying stages, then of course timing is going to make a difference.

Bookmakers now rely on in-play betting as a service differentiator. I was told recently something like 1/3 of bookmaker margins now comes from betting in-running. Little wonder you look at major bookies these days and they are betting on Phillipine basketball, women's handball or Arabic football. It's not cheap for the bookies though. A service such as Cobain Ltd doesn't come cheap.

power of the punter

Thanks to Cangamble for the tip on this one.

In North America, racing punters are getting sick of the raw deal they get from the tracks with poor pools, high takeout rates and companies bickering over who owns what rather than linking together so you can bet on any race meeting in the US or Canada.

Earlier today, they (HANA, Horseplayers Assocn of North America) banded together for the POOL ATTACK BUYCOTT (yes, Buycott), encouraging all punters to bet on one chosen race at a remote track to show their strength in numbers. So rather than calling on everyone to boycott a particular track or race (which would probably fail because at least 50% of people wouldn't hear the publicity and others would just bet anyway), they plan to storm the pool by boosting the regular turnover many times over. Will Rogers Downs, the chosen track, is very obscure, a regular race at a Tuesday meeting will hold $10k in the win pool.

I hope it works and I hope it makes racing authorities start remembering the punter again. There are far more options to spend my money now than there were back in the glory days of racing... so stop thinking it's still 1965!

The campaign was off to a good start, it was even the topic of a column on ESPN.

This is specifically a North American issue as the pools are controlled by the tracks whereas in other countries they are centrally run and consistent across the board. And totes are only part of the wagering pie, not the only option.