At first glance, the Tote guaranteeing to match or better the SP with their win returns is a great thing for punters. I’m firmly of the belief that a strong Tote is important and can only be good for the sport. On the other hand, isn’t it a very negative selling point? What it’s basically saying is that the best you can probably expect is the equivalent to the SP, not a great look for a new broom?
The SP is the final set of prices after most of the value has been wrung out of it. There’s the odd winning drifter which BOG customers already get. That drifter is already built into the Tote, assuming that their liquidity mirrors the ebbs and flows of the market in general.
Look at the actual prices offered on course before the off you will very see that the racecourse market is very competitive. The racecourse bookies bet to little or no margin at the best prices done. The punters never having had it so good, bookmakers often cutting their own throats financially.
The Tote take their 19.25% margin from the win book pool before they declare their dividend. Why not level the playing field and bet to a much smaller margin instead? This might result in dividends that beat the SP organically? Is that not feasible in a ‘no lose’ book and a far more satisfactory marketing message.
They say ‘You Can’t Eat Value’ but when you are the Tote surely you still can.
Views of authors do not necessarily represent views of Star Sports Bookmakers.
Simon Nott is author of:
Skint Mob! Tales from the Betting Ring