Twenty Six years ago when I owned my first betting shop the game was very different; the big three betting companies: Corals, Ladbrokes and William Hills had no offers so the independents (me included) used to offer ‘double result payout’ to try and prise the punters away from the big boy’s clutches.
The punters loved this concession as it wasn’t unusual for the result to be overturned. There were plenty of stewards enquiries so this was a nice bit of security for our customers. As time went on one by one the big firms started to use this concession also so the advantage was no longer there!
Nowadays pretty much everyone pays on the two results apart from on course, tote bets and exchange bets. This hasn’t been a major problem for punters as in recent years stewards enquiries have become rare and to get a result overturned was near on impossible……that was until recently. Previously if a horse was deemed to have hampered another one from winning it was the jockey who got punished and results remained unaltered. In recent months its becoming like the old days with many stewards enquiries and plenty of first past the post horses getting thrown out.
The most recent example was on Saturday where in the 6.15 Wolverhampton the first past the post horse Salute The Soldier (Evens) was demoted. The biggest bet we had laid on the horse was £5,000 at 13/8; across the industry the liabilities must have been enormous. It has got to the stage where punters have got to start looking where they are placing their bets again just like in 1993!