Are Rolling Hi-5 Carryovers Too Much of a Good Thing?
HALLANDALE BEACH, FL, October 11, 2015—When it comes to observing the phenomenon of gambling at the racetrack after more than four decades, nothing much astounds me. We’ve pretty much seen it all.
But I was simply amazed by what happened at Gulfstream Park West with respect to its newly created Rolling Super-Hi 5 with carryover.
And, no, it wasn’t that the winning payoff on the final leg of the Saturday program paid $127,569, which was astonishing enough.
Rather, it was that bettors spent $231,000 chasing a $58,000 carryover, the result of the bet failing to be won for four consecutive races. The sixth race carryover was $11,594, which grew by a factor of five over the next three races.
But almost a quarter-million spent chasing $58K? If that’s not a stunning development, then I don’t know one when I see one.
Yesterday I was suffering through a very long afternoon in Simulville yet I was never tempted to throw even a few dollars at the free money.
First, the degree of Hi-5 difficulty is extraordinary. I know this because under the right circumstances, I love playing Dime Supers--and they are plenty tough enough. Given the added permutations, the $1 minimum for a majority of players is too much to bear.
Thoroughbred Racing: Whose Game Is It, Anyway?
HALLANDALE BEACH, FL., October 6, 2015—To paraphrase a popular refrain commonly heard on one side of the aisle in the nation’s capital, I’m no economist, but the recent handle figures released by Equibase appears to indicate that if you throw enough money at the purse structure, bettors will come.
The surprising aspect here is that not only do the horsemen benefit from increased purses but so, too, does the industry. The numbers clearly indicate that bettors prefer to wager not only at the best price but on the best product available.
Statistics show that the formula for success this entire year, thanks to the month of September, has been relatively simple: Decrease the number of races by 5%, increase the amount of purse money by $15-million, and reap a $71-million reward.
We check the national handle figures when they are released by the Equibase News Service each month. For the most part, the percentage increases or decreases are almost always minimal or, in bean counters language, flat.
But not last month, and not so, albeit to a lesser degree, for the third-quarter of fiscal 2015. The third-quarter betting figures show a total handle increase of 3.65% across the U.S. compared to 2014. That’s a fairly significant gain.