The racing and gambling community in Australia is divided following the announcement of Tabcorp’s plan to launch a national tote by the end of 2020.
One of the staples for gambling in Australia has been the three different totes that provide odds for any race, being the SuperTAB, NSWTAB and UTAB. Comparing the figures for each tote and finding the best odds has become second-nature for punters in Australia.
The introduction of a national tote would eliminate the current three for one big pool, which should decrease leakage of turnover and volatility of pools to provide punters with more appealing and predictable odds each race.
Kingsley Bartholomew, however, believes the national tote will not work because interest in pari-mutuel wagering has declined severely.
Instead, the pro punter suggests a rebates system to help increase activity and interest in tote betting.
“I think there are two different ways Tabcorp could structure rebates,” he said in a recent blog post.
“Firstly, offer an 8% to 10% rebate to all punters on all bet sizes for winning or losing bets placed over the internet.
“My second idea is to offer a staggered rebate depending on how early the bet was placed.”
With attractive rebates included for early bets, the tote would form quicker and become an appealing offer from the beginning, rather than seconds before the jump.
Another suggestion was made in relation to marketing, stating that it needs to move away from fixed odds and towards tote betting, as many new punters are unaware of how it works and its existence.
Members of the Waterhouse family have taken to Twitter to voice their opinions. Rob Waterhouse is concerned for everybody, tweeting that turnover will decrease and the ‘best tote’ product – a big winner for online bookmakers – will be lost.
Rob’s son Tom Waterhouse shares the opinion of Bartholomew when it comes to marketing, implying that it needs to be dramatically increased to boost interested, whist he also wishes to change the turnover tax to a gross profit tax.
He wrote: “This is not only fairer but is a must, as it will ensure that the average punter gets more bang for their buck as takeouts can be lower.”
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