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Australian racing sets the standard again

Australian racing is right up there with the best of the world on many fronts - the flagship event of Aus racing, the Melbourne Cup gets a local (not national unfortunately) public holiday; the prizemoney at stake considering the number of race meetings held each year; the facilities at Flemington; the press coverage etc... But the one issue where it really stands head and shoulders above UK racing in particular is stewarding and the regard for punters.

National stewards decide to put punters first in overhaul of rules

STEWARDS from around the country emerged from a two-day conference in Launceston with the punter in mind. A revamp of betting deductions issued when horses are scratched late, an overhaul of the rortable jockey-challenge betting, the old commission-agent bogey, etc, were on the agenda.

Leading form student and respected punter Dominic Beirne overhauled the antiquated betting system. ''It will be a much fairer system and most kind to the punter,'' Racing NSW chief steward Ray Murrihy said yesterday.

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Trainers will soon have to report all relevant procedures administered to a horse. At present, wind operations, bone-chip removals, etc, do not have to be reported, although there is a rule where a trainer has to report to stipes anything that may affect a horse's performance in the week before a race. ''The rule currently is in relation to what's happened in the lead-up to a race,'' Murrihy said. ''Stewards believe it should be mandatory to report things like wind operations and this will be made public.''


Also in the article was a mention of changes to a particular betting market, jockey challenge, where rorting has been noticeable in recent months. The Jockey Challenge is betting on the rider with the most wins (but also carries points for placings) across a meeting. Certain people had exploited markets by learning of last minute pick-up rides before the media and betting firms. Some punters won out of it, but THE MAJORITY lost - thus stewards acted to shut down the exploitation to protect the rank and file punter.

Never let it be forgotten - it is the rank and file punter who funds the industry. Piss them off by inconsistencies which see them lose more/faster than they should, and they will find other hobbies to spend their money on.

Here's more on the mechanics of the changes to the non-runner deductions scale.

Deductions - better go coming for punters

“Currently, let’s say you’re betting on a country meeting and they are betting 170 percent, the scale is designed down at 105 to 110 percent and it’s a bonanza for bookmakers.

“This scale takes into account the prices of all horses in the race and the percentage that’s being bet.”

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