The British Horseracing Authority (BHA) has launched an investigation into the effectiveness and fairness of the starting price system used during this year’s edition of the Grand National, the showpiece horseracing event of the UK racing calendar.
According to the Racing Post newspaper, the probe has been launched in the wake of criticism of the huge overround in the market, with racecourse layer Geoff Banks claiming that the starting price system was broken and open to manipulation by major bookmakers.
The 165% returned for the race’s 39 runners as the largest in living memory.
“The SP system is deeply flawed at best. Anything that is that cheap to manipulate can only be assumed to be rife with integrity concerns,” Banks said in a blog on his website.
“Going back a decade the on-course market was very strong.
“There weren’t the betting mediums we have today. Racetracks were extremely well attended.
“Today’s special price mechanism was born out of such healthy markets, fairly representing the weight of money. That’s not true now.”
In response to the criticism, the BHA stated that it will now seek “constructive discussions with the appropriate bodies”.
BHA media manager Robin Mounsey added: “It is important that betting on British racing is attractive, open and fair to ensure its enduring appeal.
“This is something we are acutely aware of at the BHA. The starting price system and associated betting shows from racecourses are key to fair and open betting, but also to betting operator profits.
“A proper balance is required so that fair value is available to betting customers if the SP is to continue in its current form.”
source : www.igamingbusiness.com