Roy The Boy blog and he talks up the frustrations of his UK betting shop experience and his bets for the 2017 Mercedes Formula 1 drive.
British Betting Shop Hostilities
A week spent in the UK has meant a week dashing in and out of bookmaking shops – and what a thoroughly forgettable experience it was. A William Hill cashier refused my bet on a horse (at Taunton) as I never put the race time on my slip.
A Ladbrokes cashier also refused my bet on a greyhound race because he had a customer with 30-plus 49’s slips to put through his till. I did politely ask more than once if he could process the slip, but after more than two minutes neither he nor the 49’s fan would budge and my bet was never processed. It won.
Another bad beat was to follow when I had a winning bet on a handicap at Newcastle dogs (much prefer it when the track was called Brough Park). Determined to press up my winnings or break-even, I placed thee more bets, all losers, which meant I was set to leave the shop level.
However almost 15 minutes after the handicap had concluded, and with no prior announcement of a Stewards Enquiry, all bets were declared void on the race due to the late opening of one starting trap. How many handicap greyhound races are voided annually due to early or late opening of a starting trap I wonder?
As a consequence, and thanks to SIS’s failure to convey information quickly, I personally lost £120 that I would have never of lost. Secondly, up and down the country, due to the ‘information lag’ I would estimate the sum total of voided bets on the race which will never be collected must run into several thousand pounds.
Staying with BAGS racing and its notoriously obscene margins, a special mention must go to Coral who shamelessly and proudly use their in-shop screens to tout their willingness to accept each-way bets on dog racing at ¼-odds places 1-2.
Something else which is noteworthy is the offer of a cup of tea or coffee from the cashier the moment your first bet slip hits the counter. Has to be a directive from HQ I suspect and seen as a way to keep customers ‘in shop’ just a little longer.
Betway Mercedes Market
Fair play to Betway for pricing-up a market on the driver to get seat next to Lewis Hamilton at Mercedes. They make Valtteri Bottas their 8/11 favourite which is great as I make him a 7/2 shot.
Pascal Wehrlein, a product of the Mercedes’ junior driver program and with a season on F1 racing at Manor under his belt (plus no drive for 2017), is the obvious shout but, at even-money he represents no value.
20-year-old Esteban Ocon was Wehrlein’s teammate for the second half of the 2016 season and is another who has been nurtured by Mercedes young driver program. He’s set to go to Force India for the 2017 season but that contract surely has a get-out clause within it and 14/1 about him is definitely too big.
But Fernando Alonso, a dual World Champion and teammate of Hamilton’s way back in 2007, is thirsty for success which he knows can only come in a competitive car. Similarly Mercedes know their superior car deserves an experienced driver and a proven race winner, anything else would be a gamble. In fact they have already publically expressed their interest in the Spaniard. Therein, at 11/2, he has to be backed to get the job.
Next Mercedes Driver Fernando Alonso 11/2 Betway
Estaban Ocon 14/1 Betway