Horse racing provides players an alternative to traditional sports betting.
The coronavirus pandemic has rocked the sports world and as a result, bookies have had to get creative when it comes to keeping their sports bettors busy. By introducing them to horse racing, they are not only keeping their players in action, but they are also turning them into cross-platform bettors.
Major League Baseball has yet to start their season. Both the NBA and NHL have shut their doors. Although positive developments have led many to believe sports leagues will return soon, there is no official word on when that may happen.
In the meantime, players and bookies can turn to the oldest gambling sport in the United States: horse racing. If you have yet to introduce your players to horse racing, now is the time.
Not all horse racing tracks closed.
A few horse tracks continued while the rest of the sports world shuttered their doors. During this time, the “Sport of Kings” has attracted new fans.
Why did thoroughbred racetracks remain open while other sports closed?
Unlike almost every other sport, horse racing doesn’t depend on fan participation; it’s almost made for streaming. That’s because horse racing developed around gambling. The idea to bet on races happened before anyone ran horses.
In its essence, a horse race is a competition and it’s a competition that exists solely for gambling purposes. Without horseplayers betting on races, the thoroughbred industry in the United States wouldn’t live. That’s different from every other sport.
Fans going to racetracks declined well before the pandemic. As on-track participation fell, the thoroughbred industry naturally segued into online gaming.
Once the pandemic hit, Gulfstream Park, Tampa Bay Downs, Fonner Park, Will Rogers Downs, and Oaklawn Park all decided to continue running races. Even though Santa Anita Park and Churchill Downs remain closed as of this writing, there are indicators that they should soon open.
Plenty of betting options with low minimums
Horse racing may be an attractive alternative for sports bettors who are lacking in fodder for fun these days.
With low minimums, it’s an easy pivot for sports bettors who are typically casual players.
Minimums in horse racing relate closer to casino betting than wagering on a football game. The cost to make a winning bet on a horse is $2. The base cost for most exotic wagers is $1.
In horse racing parlance, exotic wagers are any bets outside of win, place (second), or show (third). The most popular exotic wagers are exactas (1-2 finishers), trifectas (1-3 finishers), and superfectas (1-4) finishers.
When things are normal, horse racing happens every day. Most tracks run at least nine races a day and horse racing season is nearly 365-days a year.
If North American racetracks aren’t running, technology allows bookies to offer international racing. Racecourses in Australia and the United Kingdom also run year-round.
As digital racebook owners are fond of saying, no matter the time of day, “Hear that? A horse race just went off!”
Like a digital casino, multiple betting options provide player choices. The more choices players have at low minimums, the more often they wager.
Players don’t have to pay juice on horse racing wagers and odds are much higher than in other sports.
Bookies make money on horse racing
If bookies don’t charge juice on horse races, how do they make money?
Placing winning horse racing bets is hard. Favorites winn just 33% of the time.
To mitigate risk, digital racebook owners need to set win limits. Win limits prevent players from making more money than a set amount. If the limit is $1,000, the most a player can make on the race is $1,000. Even if the player wagers $200, no matter the odds, the limit is still just $1,000.
It’s also a good idea to set maximum bet limits. For many racebook owners, the even-money rule works. Set a maximum betting limit that’s half of the maximum win limit. If a player wagers the max amount, the most they win is even money.
Remind your players they can double their money without paying juice. That should get them even more interested in the “Sport of Kings.”
Players will continue to wager on horses and sports
The bonus to all this? Once major U.S. sports leagues return, it’s likely that your players will continue to bet on horses as well as sports.
A sporting event can run for 3 hours or longer. A horse race takes 2 minutes or less. Many players will wager on horses during the day and sports at night, or even do so collectively.
That means more money for bookies. Sportsbook owners who wish to add a digital racebook want to work with a customer-centric per head company.
They should call an organization like PayPerHead to help them add a digital racebook. PayPerHead is the most experienced and client-focused per head company in the industry.