11 October, 2019

AUTHOR: Star Sports Content

BETTING ODDITIES blog: ITV Lost In France?

BETTING ODDITIES: In his latest weekly Monday blog, DAVID STEWART takes a sideways look at some of the stories making the news in the betting world and beyond.

DAVID STEWART is a freelance digital betting producer and journalist. His CV includes: The Sun, The Sporting Life, Racing Post, At The Races, The Sportsman, lead feature writer for Sky’s Betview magazine and senior producer Timeform Radio.


ITV Racing has been generally good for the sport and their viewing figures appear to be heading the right way.

I’m certainly in the camp of good terrestrial coverage being a positive for racing, so long may it continue.

Personally I wouldn’t have cast all the roles the way they did and think there are a few too many voices, creating quite a frantic noise which can leave the viewer exhausted.

By letting the sport breathe a little, less really can be more. But they are just personal views and I guess we all have are own, conflicting, opinions.

Worryingly though I’ve seen a few examples of “don’t ever criticise ITV – we’re lucky to have it”.

It’s the word ‘lucky’ that irks me. As if ITV are a philanthropic organisation supporting the jolly old racing game with a charitable handout.

Nonsense, last time I checked ITV were a commercial organisation that balance the cost of programming against return from advertising – bang for their buck if you like – and schedule accordingly.

I don’t watch often, generally preferring the alternatives Racing TV and Sky Racing but did tune into their Arc coverage on Sunday.

It didn’t work for me, which was a shame as it was on the ‘main’ channel. The build up to the Arc seemed to last an eternity, we had the confusion of an Arab race in-between, betting was sanitised and hardly mentioned and sorry, but it became a tad Enable overloaded.

In addition the broadcasting base of presenters being based at an empty racecourse, not even in the same country, felt insipid and a little bit “Good afternoon Paris can we have the results of the French jury….”.

Taking the positives it reinforces that their usual strategy and winning formula of being on course, up close and personal, works well and they rely on more content than a race every 35 minutes.

It’s a wider issue, and not the fault of ITV, but imagine if Redcar’s Two Year Old Trophy Meeting had been held over until Sunday, rather than shoved into the ‘big race every 5 minutes’ Saturday conveyor belt?

We might then haver had the best of both worlds. Domestic big race and top class European racing. Then we really would be lucky to have that output on ITV.


Always on the lookout for value, I had a right result when two of my favourite magazines Men’s Health and Runner’s World were bundled together – the win double saving over £2 compared with buying individually. A result.

Was dealt a curved ball at the checkout though with the further offer of “Do you want a Galaxy Bar for a £1?”. Given the subject matter of the magazines I politely declined. For all the right reasons of course, er, I prefer Cadburys to Galaxy 😉


Plenty of speculation on how much the pound will be worth if/when BREXIT happens. One sage on LBC radio speculated that we might be seeing the pound worth 1 Nectar point !!!

Clearly I need to be stockpiling via Sainsburys groceries from now on.


It’s great news that Spitting Image is coming back to our screens, however I am very sceptical that the programme will have the same impact it did in the 1980’s for one, very simple, reason. Some of these politicians are IMPOSSIBLE to caricature. Trump, Johnson, Rees-Mogg must be the hardest subjects for satirical creatives to parody as they are ALL living caricatures of themselves !!


And finally, a couple of videos sourced via the twitterspehre.

Star’s political correspondent Willian ‘Keejay’ Kedjanyi is doing a sterling job with the roving reporting and expect plenty more as the General Election impends. I MIGHT have found him a challenge too far though. In my best Kevin Keegan impression, I would just LOVE IT if he collars this Uxbridge constituent to ask her for an in-depth interview about her serving MP.


Just when you think you have seen everything up pops this video. Thanks to @ColossusRacing for spotting this one.

How bad must your luck be to have backed this one? What happens behind the trees, stays behind the trees. As the man said. WTF

Views of authors do not necessarily represent views of Star Sports Bookmakers.

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