The Ups and Downs of Wagers

by Ed Meyer

posted on April 20, 2009 in Educational Articles, General Discussion | 1 Comment >>

I was walking around the apron on opening day at a local track. It was beautiful, and I saw more people soaking up the sun than on the beach. I also ran into a group of gents who had a question about the odds when the horses broke from the gate.

There was a group of six friends who had been doing this rite of spring for most of their lives. They were glad to see me again, and pulled me aside and wanted me to answer a question for them.

Well, post time was drawing near (as the announcer brought to everyone’s attention). It was at this time when they all started pointing and asking me to watch the tote board, and not blink.

The bell rang, and the horses sprinted away. The tote board flashed one last time, and at that time they all started screaming about the odds on #5. He was just 4-1, and now he is 5-2! Why in the world would this happen?! There is not that much money bet here at the last click… Well, that part they were right about. It was now I had to bring the news of why…

I explained how tracks make money compared to days before simulcasting. They all said they liked it more back then, and wished it would go back.. Well, that may be a little tough to put back in the box I explained. I began with a simple 80/20 rule. That 20% was bet on track, and 80% comes from simulcast handle.

They were all ears now, especially since the five horse won for all of them. The track offers the product out to over 500 outlets around the world. People bet during time allotted, and the final drop of off-track monies comes rolling in from all-sources as they break from the gate. So you can be 10-1 when they load, and be 8-1 when they are turning for home. This is the influx of all of the money.

They all seemed to understand, and still liked the old days. But, they understood that the giant conspiracy had been put to rest. That big drop in odds can be like a rock in the river. But, the monies bet from around the globe get a final tally just as they break. Sometimes you go up in odds, stay the same, or drop a bit. But all of the wagering is heavily watched and regulated.