Tote Super 7

The new Tote Super7 bet launched at the Doncaster St Leger Festival meeting. This bet is similar to the Scoop6 and the Jackpot but you have to find seven winners in order to get the big prize.

The unit stake is £2 and there are consolation prizes for six and five winners. Now this may seem like a fair bet but here are five reasons why serious punters should not play this bet.

Seven Winners is Harder than getting Six Numbers on the Lottery!!!

Finding seven winners is an extremely hard thing to achieve. If you pick seven Evens shots the chance of all seven winning is 0.6%. In other words if you did this bet every day (selecting all evens shots) you should win once every170 days.

Of course the Tote are not going to select the easiest races of the day for the Super7. Lets say they just pick totally random races.

The average odds of winners on the flat turf is 6.93/1. If you picked seven horses with those odds your chance of getting all seven winners is 0.00001%. In other words if you did this bet every day (selecting all around 7/1 shots) you should win once every 8,705,602 days, or pick seven 7/1 shots and your odds of winning are about 8.7 million to 1.

As this bet costs £2, if you spent the same amount on the lottery (placing 2 x £1 tickets) your chance of hitting six numbers is nearer 7 million to 1. Thus it is easier to win the lottery than the Super7.

The Pools will not be Good at the Start of the Week

Today the Tote are guaranteeing a pool of £100,000 to help promote the bet the St Leger festival. That is great, but is £100,000 going to be enough to cover the colossal odds of winning?

What about a typical Tuesday? What if there is a cold meeting at Southwell and a damp meeting at Newton Abbot? What is going to be the typical pool payout on days like this?

At a guess the Tote are hoping that no one is going to win this bet early / mid week and that by the weekend it should roll over to tens of thousands. But even by the weekend the pools are not going to be anywhere near the levels needed to return a fair payout.

Maybe they are hoping that the roll over will go on for weeks? Maybe they are expecting lottery style payouts of millions?

The Pools will rarely be Good Value at all

This bet will pay a “consolation” prize for six and five winners. Whilst this will appease the near miss punters (the custard pie just hits them on the ear, or the shoulder rather right in the face), it is going to take away a lot of the return from the seven winner pool.

This is the same with the lottery. In order to keep interest with punters and to keep them coming back for more the lottery pays smaller prizes for 5, 4, and 3 numbers. If they did not do this the jackpot pools would be much bigger and fairer, but they would lose a lot of punters as those punters would never have a sniff and walk away from that bet.

For this reason the seven winner pool is rarely going to offer a positive return. What with the Tote takeout (the skim), and the consolation prizes this pool will rarely have a decent edge.

Syndicates vs Haddocks will fight out the Pools

There are only going to be two types of punter who will win this bet. One will be the big syndicates which can afford high stakes perms and the other will be the Agnes Haddocks who place a single £2 bet and pick the horses because they liked the names.

But will the big syndicates actually get involved with the Super7 bet? If they placed a five figure bet on the Scoop6 they may have to stake 3x, 4x, 5x that in order to cover the seventh leg of the Super7.

This could be a bet which trips up big hitters such as Harry Findlay. Imagine if all his gold turned to dust because he had to overstretch his stakes for three roll overs on the trot (presumably when a Haddock came along and won the lot the next day).

The more serious horse racing punter should stay away from this bet. They have more chance of winning the lottery and that type of bet requires far less energy to arrive at six selections. Punters trying to find seven winners at pre-selected races will quickly find that they have not slept for 24 hours, and that their betting bank dries up rapidly as they shove in another “saver” on the ticket.

The Tote should Concentrate on the Core Business

The Tote seem to be diversifying their bets in order to attract more mug money. They seem to think that there is a vast pool of mug punters out there who are willing to “shove a couple of quid on for the chance of a life changing win”.

Newsflash Tote: there is only so much spare change mug punters have. You have to compete with the lottery, online bingo, scratch cards and every other type of sucker bet out there.

The Tote should stick with their core business – Tote Win, Place, Exacta and Placepot Pools. These are the bets they should be promoting. Lower the skim, and increase the marketing for those bets to increase liquidity. Get punters up and and down the country at the courses and in the bookies to place bets on these pools.

Of course, the Tote are hoping for the publicity to drive sales of the Super7 bet. There is no better free ad than seeing a Mrs Haddock holding a cheque for £1 million. Showing Joe Punter walking away from the Tote window pocketing his winnings of £24.50 for his £2 win (which would have paid £18 with the bookies) just does not have the same appeal.

Here’s My Advice!

Forget this bet. I can see no reason why any serious punter would want to play this bet. It is no value at the start of the week, it is no value even after two weeks of roll over. The chances of getting seven winners is very slim and even if you do get seven winners you may be sharing the dividend with a Mrs Haddock.

If you want to pick seven horses for a “life changing win” then choose your own races: do not let the Tote dictate the races you must bet on.

If the following races were all on the same day they will surely choose races such as The Brocklesby, The Lincoln, The Royal Hunt Cup etc.

It is far better to find your own seven races which you can specialise in. If you are good at finding winners in maiden races but rubbish in long distance handicaps then just choose seven maiden races!

Pick your own seven races and choose your own comfortable stakes. A 10p accumulator with seven horses at 7/1 will pay £209,715. 10p is much easier to throw away than £2.

Like playing chess with the black pieces (ie going second) and winning a game against a strong opponent, there’s nothing more satisfying than sparring with a bookmaker and triumphing.

Indeed, betting is a game of chess – a bookie bets to a considerable theoretical margin in his favour, which is like always starting with the white pieces; his first move is his opening prices, yours is your bet; he takes bets and adjusts prices accordingly and at the end of the game he usually wins the tournament like a grandmaster playing simultaneous chess. But will you win your board?

Well, a professional will certainly win more than he loses.

In any game the winning strategy is usually to do what your opponent doesn’t want you to do. It’s not always possible to work out what this is, but bookmakers give away clues, especially when it comes to horse racing:

  • Each-way bets that are refused with ‘Win only’ or ‘Half stakes on the place’ offers. Put the telephone down quickly and plunder all the each way you can get (up to your required stake) on the internet. You are certainly betting in a market where the place terms make the place book well under 100% and therefore in your favour. Most likely a book with a long odds-on favourite, clear second favourite at 5/1 to 8/1, and big prices the rest with three places available each way. Just back the second favourite each way.
  • Stable money not Pricewise or other tipsters’ horses. Watch out for price cuts that occur in the early-price market with two or three bookmakers only and aren’t obvious bets from the horses’ previous form. Tipster horses will light up with a sea of blue. Back the former and avoid the latter.

By far the best race meeting of the year is the Cheltenham Festival. The enthusiasm and love of the sport shown by festival racegoers and pilgrims from the Emerald Isle put Royal Ascot’s posers to shame. This is real racing. I’ve won money at 17 of the last 20 Festivals, and next year there could be value to be found in the following areas:

The number of Irish winners. This has been a good source of profit. Last year I had a substantial four-figure bet with Cashmans on six-or-more winners at 6/4. Had they bothered to check they would have found that at the same time Ladbrokes were 8/11 on six-or-more and evens on five-or-less. Ladbrokes subsequently shortened six-or-more to 1/2.

The Cheltenham Foxhunters Chase. Devotees of McKenzie, Selby & Harris’ Hunter Chasers & Point-to-Pointers annual will already be hooked on betting on hunter chases. Traditionally, bookies find it much more difficult to price up these races without collateral form to rely on and with Irish raiders to assess. Using a ratings service and adjusting for the going and the Cheltenham fences pays rich dividends.

Change of going. This is what you’re looking for with day-of-the-race betting, as opposed to ante-post. Remember, nearly every race will have been traded ante-post and the bookies will be lured into a false sense of security as to the accuracy of their prices, having offered them for such a length of time. This will alter with a going change from good to soft or from good to firm to good to soft. If this happens I’ll be up all night re-working my prices and seeing which horses have significantly improved or decreased chances. I’ll immediately hit internet prices where available and phone accounts and shops as soon as they open.

Handicaps. For once, every horse is trying (unless Aintree is the plot and a bad run here in a less suitable race will guarantee a big price there!). To get a horse well handicapped, its prep races may have been run over unsuitable distances on less-than-ideal going or when the horse was at less-than-peak fitness. Early market moves in the day-of-the race markets on big-priced horses (20/1 or more) are therefore particularly significant here and if the horse suits this profile you should follow the money immediately, seeking to match the best price taken each way. 

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