Let’s educate the gamblers – no value with favourites

WE talked about prices and value last Tuesday but one of our readers has completely missed the point and verballed me to boot. The article, “When is the price right?”, was all about value and how prices get to where they finish. I made no mention of what was “my favourite”, or about the Watchdog’s favourites, only about the price which the market produced for its favourites.

Nor did I comment on Fixed Odds favourites or their prices because we have no idea what they were (you could take a guess but the only evidence available is the final one, which may or may not be the shortest price offered).

And a regular, “Todman”, asks if oncourse bookmakers are “raking in the moolah”. The first question to ask there is – what oncourse bookmakers? They are few and far between – and almost entirely at major meetings. The single reason for that is that there are few if any customers worth catering to. Trainers are of limited value because they tend to know which runners have no chance and leave them alone – so an unbalanced book is the outcome. Anyway, a single bookie attending is like the sound of one hand clapping. A relic of the ages, more’s the pity.

Prices are set basically by tipsters like Watchdog and Ozchase on the one hand and TABs and corporate bookies who offer Fixed Odds on the other. The weight of money may alter things as time passes and the Fixed Odds people simply shut off the access when they feel like it.

My points were that punters are scarce, gamblers are plentiful, and favourites’ prices are terrible. That combination is a serious threat to the industry, especially when genuine greyhound punters have also to work with small pools.