We’re living in the golden years of recreational punting.
That’s right, old mate at the pub doing his Mark Guest with the form guide and schooner in hand has never been better placed!
A competitive corporate marketplace fighting for your business over the last ten years has resulted in awful products like home tote betting 17-25% takeout (without rebates) being replaced with things like Best Tote (11-12% derived takeout), Best Of Four (9-11%), Best Of The Best (sometimes below 100% market!), Betting Exchanges, Odds Boosts, Enhanced Odds and Bonus Bet refunds.
Ladbrokes offer some of the best value promotions in Australia including Odds Boost and Enhanced Odds as well as Best Of the Best for metro racing.
The casual punter now gets more bang for his buck than ever before as a result of these products.
He gets to bet in more races, on more runners and over more meetings than he ever has before, simply because the bookmakers are giving more back (lower takeout) than the traditional pub tote betting that dominated the Australian racing scene for many years.
After all, these are the punters that fund the industry, so why shouldn’t they be looked after?
Sure, some bookmakers can restrict and or limit winning punters. That’s a reality we have to deal with, particularly those looking to make the transition from recreational bettor to someone who bets to win and becomes price sensitive, often beating the market.
However, in Australia with so many bookie options and the introduction of the minimum bet laws in many jurisdictions even the more sophisticated punter can get on to win 20k+ on a runner in the City and 10k+ at the provincials.
The vast majority of us can get set for a decent bet on the tote derivative markets and disruptive players such as Betfair and TopBetta’s Goat Tote product cater to high volume, astute punters.
With so many bookies in the market it also allows Fixed Odds punters to shop around for the best price, often being able to build books well below 110% by being selective despite the corporates putting up 125% fixed odds markets.
Free quality information (like what you read on Punting Stars!) is readily available as are sectional times, race replays, ratings and form comments. If you like doing the form puzzle, you can now do so as conveniently and as cheaply as ever before.
Spring has arrived which means even the most seasonal of punters will be betting over the next few months and trying to find winners.
If you’re one of those punters and want some basic tips on how to maximise your returns and more importantly – get the most value for your money, see below!
- Be very careful betting into early fixed odds markets. They are set to very high market percentages and are vulnerable to scratchings and deductions.
- Take advantage where possible of bookmaker promotions but be sure to read the terms and conditions and don’t just bet for the sake of it because there is a promotion on a race!
- If betting fixed odds, bet late and use your odds boosts and price enhancements when the fixed odds market is at its lowest percentage. Sure, the market is more efficient now but for a casual player without rated prices, this is your best value option.
- Shop around! If you really want to back a horse, take a look around to see if there are any promotions running or at the very least, take the best possible price.
- If you are really trying to make the most of your punting dollar. Then, avoid betting exotics. Sorry guys! Everyone loves a $2 first four with the chance to win $5,000 but the reality is markets such as trifecta, first fours, quaddies and Big 6’s are high takeout products that favour the betting operators and professionals.
- If you have to put your bets on early, bet on products like GoatTop, Best Of The Best, Best Tote +20% (amazing product rec punters have at Ladbrokes) and BO4. These are the lowest margin markets and mathematically deliver higher returns to punters.
Make this Spring your best yet by taking advantage of all the options Australian punters have at their fingertips both in terms of striking the bet and deciding on who to bet on!
Feel free to contact us on Twitter @puntingstars if you have any questions or advice for your fellow punters!
Good punting folks