Photo Credit: The Horseracing Bettors Forum (HBF)
The Horseracing Bettors Forum (HBF) is about to introduce an industry-wide consultation which will help pin the starting prices in 2019, following the recent departure of Simon Rowlands.
Off to the Races and Fixing the Odds
The Horseracing Bettors Forum (HBF) is a small team organization that now wants to work out the odds for the entire industry. Analyzing the chances of a horse winning has been an intricate affair not only for punters but equally for the betting agencies. The HBF wants to change that insofar as it can provide with standardized industry-wide benchmarks.
According to HBF there has been an imbalance in how much odds are altered so that bookmakers guarantee themselves a profit, which was both against the grain of any social responsibility practice as well as undermining the good repute of the industry as a whole.
— BHA Press Office (@BHAPressOffice) November 30, 2018
The HBF has cited a few cases where prices were stilted so as to offer bettors no chance of winning in the first place, the organization claimed. According to HBF Chair Matt Bisogno, there has been an “alarming” discrepancy in the stated goals of betting companies and how they have been actually treating their customers.
Mr. Bisogno spoke to iGaming Business, a respected media outlet, which comments and tracks changes in the industry. In his own words, “The main challenges for 2019 from an HBF perspective are likely to be ongoing lobbying for more and better data – especially around racecourse reporting – going, rail movements/race distances, timing).”
He also noted that the organization is now hoping to broach the topic on an industry-level, bringing as many operators and representatives as BHF possibly can. This objective is well-aligned with the longer-term goals of the organization.
The BHF was established with the help of the British Horseracing Authority (BHA), a body dedicated to defending consumer interest by bringing fair betting options for anyone interested in putting down a wager on the outcome of British horse races.
It goes without saying he will be missed on the Forum and, from a personal perspective, I want to thank Simon for his guidance, but mostly for instilling the confidence to challenge and push for what we believe is right for British racing punters and the sport in general.
Mr. Bisogno has said that he will work in the same direction as has his predecessor. Addressing him by his first name, he also noted the good work that Mr. Rowlands had done during his stint at BHF.
.@Betfair today launches £500 Minimum Bet To Win Guarantee on all UK and Irish racing. From today, we lay to lose £500 in the Win market to any customer, any meeting, any race from 10:00am. Full details here: https://t.co/aa0TLpT6pG pic.twitter.com/vnrUyYATwv
— Flutter plc (@FlutterPLC) November 30, 2018
Mr. Rowlands walks away from his job after 3 years at the helm of the BHF. He was one of the founding members when the body was originally set up back in 2015. He was involved with the day-to-day running of safe betting practices and initiatives and also represented the interests of horseracing enthusiasts.
The BHF has been involved in many notable customer-favoring developments in the industry with Betfair establishing a minimum guaranteed bet across its British and Irish bookmakers, voted on December 1, 2018, and backed by the BHF.