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Trying to read the horse racing markets

8th January 2014 / George
Horse Racing Betting

It is never easy to know which way a price is going to go with regards to a certain horse in Horse Racing as there are so many factors that govern price movement. The bookmakers, betting exchange traders and betting public will all be having an effect on price movements. As will the racing press as well as respected sources like the televised racing channels for example.

It is vital that you try and take the best available price if you are thinking of backing a horse and that you are even prepared to not have a bet at all if you do not think the price is right. The problem here is in trying to identify what is and what isn’t a correct price and this isn’t easy. But let us take two punters who both back the same horses and will call them Bob and John.

They each get five winners and five losers because they backed the same horses. But out of the five winners, John managed to bet 9/4 while Bob took the first price that came and that was 2/1. They each wagered £100 on the their respective horses. After 10 races Bob was ahead by £500 which takes into account his £1000 profit on his five winning horses less his £500 loss on his five losing horses which gives us a net profit of £500.

But John is ahead by £625 simply because he got on at better prices. They were both betting on track and Bob bet straight away when the market opened and took the 2/1 on offer. John on the other hand had been watching the early market movement on the exchanges and seen this horse fall hugely in price. He didn’t expect any more downward movement and so was expecting it to drift through a lack of interest at the opening 2/1.

So he waited and watched the price rise to 9/4 and it then touched 5/2. He was hoping that it would reach 11/4 but it came back down to 9/4 instead and he stepped in at that price before it came back down to where it had opened up at which was 2/1. So by being prepared, John had obtained a better price than Bob simply by watching the betting market beforehand and getting 9/4 instead of 2/1.

It is imperative that you try and obtain the best possible price that you can when you place any bet as your long term chances of survival basically depend on it. This is what the overwhelming majority of novice punters fail to do, they are so thrilled to be at the racecourse and betting that they simply take whatever price is on offer at the time.

It is easy for the bookmakers to make money from these people as they are unsophisticated in their betting and will take any price. It is for this same reason though that bookmakers need to be very cognizant of price movements within the market otherwise they will be swamped with liabilities that they really do not want or can afford.



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