A Tote Monopoly

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This topic contains 14 replies, has 8 voices, and was last updated by ricky lake ricky lake 4 years, 7 months ago.

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  • #4266
    rory
    rory
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    • Total Posts 2685

    Look how poor the Tote is in this country and that answers your question.  Trying to launch an "exotic" bet is a joke, and I’ve seen ordinary Trifecta pools fail to reach 3 figures (that’s pools, not returns!) on numerous occasion. We don’t view our betting like the Japanese and anyone makes the mistake of thinking that because it works elsewhere, it must work here wold be in for a nasty shock.

    #101970

    Zebra
    Participant
    • Total Posts 74

    I’m no advocate of eliminating bookmakers and excahanges but I’m not sure Ian that their presence forces the Tote to be competitive. One of the general criticisms of the Tote is that it concentrates too much on its fixed odds betting shop business and not enough on its pool business. By cutting its takeout rates and having Tierce-style bets on the Saturday big race, they could make pool betting a more attractive alternative than is currently the case.

    #101971

    Daylight
    Member
    • Total Posts 369

    I must be in the minority here as I think a Tote monoploly would be the best possible way to move forward for racing. The posts thus far on this thread have been very one-sided with just opinions from punters who consider this a bad thing as they may lose a few percent on a book and bookies/exchanges who moan whenever the oppotunity arises about their 10% gross profit tax!

    Unfortunately with the attitudes of the likes of Ian with his pretty sweeping "The people who benefit most in Tote monopolys are people who own racehorses (already rich) and people with enough free time to go racing regularly (usually wealthy or retired). " makes me relise how narrow minded some people can be and that they think racing is there to serve them solely! The majority of the races that make up the BHB fixture list is real low class events that are grossly under-funded and I personally would happily play to a Tote 130% book opposed to an oncourse 120% book knowing that ALL the Tote’s profits go straight back into racing without someone getting rich at racings expense. The owners of these types of horses are people who struggle to afford to keep their pride and joy in training or syndicates for working class people with no multi-million pund breeding operation behind them.

    There are simply far too many fingers in the pie that is horse racing!

    This may come as a major shock to some but horse racing wasn’t invented for bookies/exchanges/punters, it was invented for owners to race their horses – which clearly is something that has been long forgotten.

    <br>

    #101972

    Daylight
    Member
    • Total Posts 369

    Hi Ian,

    First and foremost, I do personally respect your views more than you may think but I will always argue if I don’t agree as that’s why we’re all here.

    I dare say I am in the minority and the punters of course want the best value as that goes without saying but then again they just want to bet don’t they? So by taking their choice away the punters will still gamble but now only on the Tote. I know this and whether or not punters choose to donate money to owners or not is irrelivant as more will go into prize money as I’m sure punters would rather watch real horses than those at Portman Park (although there are some very sad cases).

    Racehorses should be accessable to most working class people Ian and by bigger prize money in the lower class races most people who would love to own horses could!

    "Racing, like other sports, should gain its funding from turnstile receipts, TV broadcasting deals and sponsorship – and not by fleecing the real working classes here: the punters. "<br>Having worked at an exchange before and starting another, I’d be keen to know exactly where your profits intend on coming from, as surely it won’t come from fleecing the real working class punters will it?<br>

    #101973

    Venusian
    Participant
    • Total Posts 1668

    It’s long been a curious feature of racing in this country that it’s organised primarily for the benefit of bookmakers, rather than those involved in sport itself.

    Ian, You write…"With bookie over-rounds of 1.5%-2% a runner, and exchange over-rounds non-existent, a Tote take-out of 16% is a disgrace – especially in fields of eight or fewer runners."

    2 points:

    1) Your take-out figure for the Tote of 16% roughly equates to a 119% overround. I’d say that compares pretty favourably with the average SP return.

    2) The typical bookmaker per-runner overround of 1.5% to 2% is a mathematical nonsense. This is not the first time I’ve had to post on this topic, but it must be understood  that the number of runners in a race bears NO RELATION WHATSOEVER to what a bookmakers profit margin should be.  A percentage profit is a percentage profit, no matter how many, or few, the number of runners. This why idiot journalists like ‘Thommo’ make me so choleric when they twitter away about big-field handicaps offering ‘great value for the punter’. They don’t, they offer great value for the bookmaker.

    #101974

    Daylight
    Member
    • Total Posts 369

    Ian,<br>Working class racehorse ownership would be merely one added bonus with other such extras as great race course facilites, more competative races, better deals for poorly paid stable staff, better Tote service, not relying on other revenues whereby people moan (ie. gross profit tax) – the list goes on…..

    My use of the word ‘fleecing’ was used to highlight a point that you made in your earlier posting and we all have different opinions as I think taking 90% of gross profits that you got from horse racing IS ‘fleecing’ racing but the word has many shades of gray as it’s one persons opinion. Whether you charge 1% or 20% comission is irrelivant to me as I know off you profits from racing you take 90% on profit whereas the Tote take 16% on turnover which is a much better deal for racing.

    I think we’ll have to agree to disagree as I’m certain horse racing would be a much better quality package with a Tote monopoly and nothing posted yet has swayed me any (if anything made me of stronger belief).

    #101975

    pixo
    Member
    • Total Posts 32

    A Tote betting monopoly in the UK would be my worst nightmare!!!

    PS. Lets be realistic here, who’s going to stop the bookies & exchanges from re-locating overseas? Any hopes of more money being pumped back into racing would simply evaporate then.

    (Edited by pixo at 12:20 am on Dec. 10, 2002)

    #101976

    Tony25
    Member
    • Total Posts 329

    A tote monopoly of the UK………Unrealistic,it can be compared to an execution (you shoot the person and then find out he’s not guilty…what can you do?)…..in the same instance you allow free enterprise …..its unreversable unless your name is Stalin!!

    ps……If bookmakers didn’t exist and we had a tote monopoly of the UK i doubt live pictures would exist,in fact i doubt the blower would have been invented.

    The tote is a poorly run organisation…..it always as been and always will be….anyone who respects the totes achievements in the past 40 years must work for British rail…the two are on a par.

    #101977
    rory
    rory
    Participant
    • Total Posts 2685

    Tony,

    your last post was offensive to British Rail. :smiley:

    #101978

    Tony25
    Member
    • Total Posts 329

    Rory……i meant IMO and allegedly;)

    #101979

    Venusian
    Participant
    • Total Posts 1668

    Ian, you still haven’t justified the mathematical illogicality of ‘per-runner’ percentages.

    It makes no sense whatsoever.

    It’s like saying that if a shop sells 2 brands of dog food then its markup should be about 5%, but if it sells 20 it should be about 30%!<br>

    #101980
    rory
    rory
    Participant
    • Total Posts 2685

    Venusian,

    it makes perfect sense. The dogfood analogy is a nonsense. A closer parallel would be to state that the shopkeeper makes x pence profit per can of dogfood sold.  It makes no sense to ask a shopkeeper to sell 50 cans of dogfood for the same profit as one.

    The punter backs one horse which has a profit margin of 1.5 – 2 % for the bookie. The deal is roughly the same for every race, so the punter always gets a reasonably fair deal as long as he uses his head.

    Bookmakers do not have a guaranteed profit margin per runner in any race, as their books are never balanced.  The vast majority of races only have a handful of "live" horses, and balancing the book by pushing outsiders out is a liability management nightmare.

    #101981

    Venusian
    Participant
    • Total Posts 1668

    Rory, if what I’m saying is incorrect, why then do bookmakers prefer to sponsor large fields of handicappers, rather than WFA or conditions races? It’s because the profit margin on their book is greater in such races. For every £100 of business conducted on a 20 runner race they’ll make about £25, whereas on a 8 runner race it’s going to be around £15. The whole notion of ‘Per-runner’ profit margins is a fiction dreamt up by bookmakers, and is a mathematical nonsense.

    Your comment about bookmakers not having balanced books on any one race is correct, but in the long run they will enjoy a built-in profit margin (otherwise they wouldn’t be in business), based on their average overround percentage. That’s really the only point of having bookmakers – if they had a balanced book on every race they’d be the Tote!

    #101982

    redman
    Member
    • Total Posts 43

    Ian

    (you must have been wondering where I was – so was I ;) – lost in the USA)

    firstly –  :angry:  no I won’t go there – suffice to say if racing isn’t funded there will be no racing and wagering is the sole nexus of racing.  

    secondly – tote monopolies have one big problem – the lack of price lead – Australia has one of the better systems with a strong offcourse tote (16% blended takeout) and a stong oncourse bookmaker ring (5.5% long run retention rate (as against overound) – the result is a reasonably informed market (there are some restrictions to information getting offcourse but the oncourse and offcourse pools are commingled).

    As I understand it the Tote (in the UK) has not sorted itself out post the betting duty reform – which I suppose is a function of teh fact that it is to be sold to racing – and who wants the worst house on the best street renovated before the "sale".

    With ATR’s committment to parimutuel and a stronger bookmaker environment (and exchanges bought to heel – that equality with other wagering operations) the Tote is BIG opportunity.

    Lastly "It’s not fair to tax the creators of that level playing field (exchanges) more heavily than those who don’t offer a level playing field for punters."  – this is just not true – and if you keep believing it … it will cost you dearly.  

    When someone works out how to tax betting exchanges equitablely on the profits from the wagering nexus (which is the punters profits given there is no bookmakers)- rather than not at all as is currently the case – we will see rational prices in betting exchanges and they will lose their competitive edge over traditional tax and levy paying wagering operators.

    rouge homme – though maybe with a yank accent its redneck….LOL<br>

    #752154
    ricky lake
    ricky lake
    Participant
    • Total Posts 2360

    A very interesting thread from long ago , I reckon Daylight was right….when I joined in 2003 , there were lots of spats between Redman and the old Ian Davies …some classic posting , must admit after 12 years I would agree with Redman , Exchanges were the worst thing ever to happen to British Racing

    Betfair was pretty much in its infancy stage then ….now we have a gargoyle …gobbling up everything

    Its been carnage ever since ….but the goldfish is out of the bowl and it aint going back …..

    Hindsight is wonderful

    Daylight RIP knew a lot more then I ever credited him with , the old Ian Davies is gone …the new one is pretty tame …..sigh

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