An Alphabet Of Horse Racing Terms – B – Part 2
These can be divided into
• those who make a book on the racecourse
• those who operate betting shops off course
• those who operate a telephone credit service or a postal betting service
• firms who operate spread betting services
A number of big firm bookmakers will combine two or even all of the first three activities. On the racecourse bets are settled at the prices quoted for, if agreed with the backer at starting price.
However they settle them, their activities on course and off course are governed by what goes on in the market, on the racecourse.
A betting market is formed immediately before each race. Prices fluctuate according to the total of money known to be on a particular horse in the ring as a whole.
Amounts of significance are signaled by Tic Tac from the rails to Tattersalls and back, and to the silver ring and bookmakers outside. I.e. on the course itself.
The amount a price will contract or go out in the market varies also, according to whether the market is a weak or strong one.
The prices originally on offer in the early stages of any betting market are not however, based on the money bet, but usually on how the bigger Tattersalls board’s operators think the market ought to go.
The earliest prices chalked up are very often shorter than they realistically should be. In the days up to and beyond the great post-war, betting to a true market price was dictated by on course money, largely by big backers and by the professionals, commission agents acting on behalf of others, including trainers and owners, or trainers and owners themselves.
The huge growth of off course betting since the nineteen sixties has changed all that. Seldom do trainers walk up to the rails, get a price about their horse, and affect the market accordingly.
Most money is wagered off the course and is transmitted, and news of it is transmitted, by telephone to the tic tacs acting for the big bookmakers. The entire market reacts accordingly within a few seconds.
The money which causes this is called office money and in the case of big amounts placed off course which crucially affect the market, the horses are known in the ring as betting shop horses.
This concept is crucial to understanding trading on the Betting Exchanges.
It is the Betting Exchanges and the Betting Shops which affect prices on the course. Not the other way around.
Data from online bookies and live on course feeds can be used to confirm price movement data, but should not be used to predict it. Most of the heavy betting nowadays is coming via Betfair and Betdaq.
As the market gets underway and the money starts to reinforce the bookmaker’s original opinions of the prices, it will cause them to alter prices on the general principle of supply and demand.
A punter can learn a great deal from following the market that is, seeing how the odds are altering. The market can give strong hints on what to back, and, even more important, what not to back.
On the racecourse, this involves having a look at how the prices are going at successive stages in the ten minutes or so immediately before a race.
In the betting shop, with the aid of successive prices marked on the board and shown on video, following the market is rather easier, and watching the television makes it equally simple.
All the market moves can readily be seen on television, and, depending on the channel, are backed up with information on why the prices are going the way they are.
In betting shops with television or video a similar advantage is enjoyed by the punters.
On the racecourse, following the market is rather hard work, because the bookmakers erase the prices successively as they change; but, in general, punters who take the trouble should reap the reward.
Weak markets/ strong markets:
Royal Ascot provides one of the strongest betting markets of the year on the flat, and the Cheltenham festival does so in national hunt racing.
The weakest markets are at small, under patronised courses where the racing is poor.
Here, A few hundred pounds can cause prices to tumble several points, whereas in a strong market the same amount multiplied several times over would cause no price change.
In 1999, an interview with Victor Chandler, the leading bookmaker, some fascinating observations were made on some of the changes that have overtaken the betting scene.
The racecourse punter has never had it so good. To be a punter now is heaven. With no expenses, being a professional punter compared to a bookmaker has to be the best choice he said.
Chandler explained: “at Cheltenham last Sunday meeting we did a survey and asked people whether they bet at the races.
Only 37% said yes. The rest either don’t bet or bet in small sums with the tote.
That confirms that the culture of racing has changed. My on course business has been decimated in the last two years. For example three or four years ago at the Eclipse meeting at Sandown, we took 200,000 on the big race.
Last year we took £8000…on Sundays, you see an enormous number of prams they are not our punters.
These days the on course bookmaker is doing less and less business, which makes the prices paid for pitches at the recent auctions even more surprising.
Term for a horse who will not settle in his loose box aand persistently walks round and round it, thus losing weight and being difficult to train. The cure is often to give the horse a companion such as a goat.
A form of bloodstock sale taking place at a racecourse, where instead of the usual practice of what’s on offer merely being led around the sale ring, the horses are put through their paces on the course in front of propective buyers. They are allowed to breeze along two or three furlongs.
BRITISH HORSE RACING BOARD
Commonly abbreviated to BHB this is the governing and administrative body for racing which came into being in June 1993 thereby taking over effective overall control from the Jockey Club.
This in itself was the most radical shakeup of racing’s power structure for more than 200 years and marked a watershed in British racing history.
For the first time racing has as its governing authority, a representative, accountable and democratic body which gives the industry an executive role in shaping its future.
The BHB’s principle responsibilities include:
• strategic planning and policy for racing;
• improving the financial position of racing;
• representing racing in dealings with government;
• the fixture list;
• race planning, including the supervision of race programs and the employment of handicappers;
• marketing and promotion of racing;
• nominating racing’s representatives on the horse race bettings levy board;
• liaison with the betting industry;
• encouraging and fostering breeding of bloodstock;
• collection and control of funds required for the administration of racing, including those required by the jockey club for the protection of the sport’s integrity;
• the development and maintenance of programs of training and education within racing;
• the contract under which Weatherbys supply administrative services to racing.
In principle the aim of the BHB is to give the leadership needed to put racing in Britain on a sound financial footing. This means ensuring that racing is making the best use of its resources, is maximizing income from outside the sport and has a clear single voice with which to have its views heard in parliament and elsewhere.
Among the BHB, members and representatives of the racecourse association, the Jockey Club, race horse owners association, thoroughbred breeders association, and industry committee.
BUMPING AND BORING
Sometimes in the final stages of a race a horse may be tiring, and the jockey is unable to prevent him or her veering off a straight line, “bumping” an opponent and “boring” that opponent off its intended course. This may affect the opponent’s chances, and in certain instances may cost him the race, in which case there will almost certainly be an objection by the losing rider;
Equally certain, in any case, is that when bumping and boring occurs there is a strong possibility of a Stewards inquiry, during which the evidence of the film from a camera patrol and video re-run will be examined.
BY AND OUT OF
Expressions indicating the parentage of a horse. He or she is described as being by a sire [stallion] out of the dam [broodmares], whose origin will often be indicated in pen by brackets giving the name of his sire.
Example Commander in Chief by Dancing Brave out of Slightly Dangerous.