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Tote Pools


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If you thought tote pools on NZ racing were getting smaller, then I'd expect you would be right.

In 1997, $820m was bet into NZ domestic racing tote pools. In 2017/2018 year, $240m from NZ TAB customers was bet into NZ domestic racing tote pools (30% the total). Including the likes of Quaddie and Place 6 that didn't exist prior. Even with the investment from Vic TAB, the pools are going to be massively smaller.

In 2006, the net betting revenue (derived largely from NZ racing), would be $220m based on todays levy rates, Last year from racing, around $245m. In 2006, they ran betting on 24,000 races. Last year, 99,000 races. Compare the costs of running a tote operation in 2006 to a 99,000 race, fixed odds service last year. 

Edited by mardigras
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Is there any good reason they would have for gone down a path of lower margins but higher operating costs.

Is this something that has been forced on them because the punters want fixed odds and if they do not offer it the punter has lots of other options through the many agencies now available


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They was a figment of their imagination. HK doesn't offer fixed odds, just tote. As curious mentioned, the tote odds will be as good as fixed odds anyway in general (when the pools are bigger). And if the tote become attractive and the pools then  become larger enough, they cater for larger bets as well.

When the TAB offered fixed odds, the take-up was slow. It's just become more and more the norm. As I've mentioned elsewhere, they could have still provided a means to have fixed odds. Legalise bookies to run fixed odds services and clip the ticket. And the TAB can continue to run an efficient tote system that costs very little to operate, costing the industry peanuts.

A properly run tote system would be hard for the bookies to compete with if you stopped them from offering tote derivative products. Those products allowed them to effectively act like a tote operator (with a reduced takeout). How stupid is that?

The reason punters get banned/limited is due to fixed odds. End of story. With small tote pools, it drives the punter that was betting fixed odds and gets banned or heavily restricted - out of the marketplace. The pools have got so small, they can't reasonably bet into them.

You've been able to bet fixed odds for donkeys years. In 2006, NZ took less than $60m in fixed odds bets and who was going off-shore to bet fixed odds elsewhere at the time? Little to no one.

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Fixed was for sports, but was on some racing from the 90s.

Didn't need to be on sport outside of live betting anyway. 

But the point is, whether they had it for sport or not (I think not), they shouldn't have had it on racing as a state owned operator. They should have shifted all the risk elsewhere and taken a share of their profits. The same way Vic Racing did when Vic Gov owned the TAB.

People mostly have little choice now. It's pretty much fixed odds or risk large dividend changes on the tote. It's a self fulfilling move by virtue of diluting the tote pools by spreading tote betting across 100,000 events.

That brings about the view that a punter should bet fixed odds.

Just because people bet that way a lot more now, doesn't mean we needed it or in fact wanted it. If they hadn't diluted the pools, fixed odds wouldn't be any better, and usually worse than tote prices, simply because of the need to manage risk so building in additional margin to deal with that.

That is the very reason the fixed odds in Oz are deteriorating. The margin has to be on top of the costs, and the costs/taxes are increasing.

Even with higher market % than tote, the final yield is a lot less. 

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If you want to be a pro you need to create an automated model that backs and lays horses within your value range, on the exchanges paying commissions while you sleep (UK racing)

However if you’re dense like myself you need to find another method, once upon a time the Corporates were taking 90% on racing and 10% on sport now 49% on racing and 51% on sport a far less takeout rate on Sport which makes Sport far more attractive to bet on

I have spent 12 months fine tuning my racing punting model now that I have achieved that......... unfortunately punting has taken a turn for the worse, I’m the kind of punter who could deposit $1k and turn it over at a pretty decent rate, maybe not winning or losing unfortunately this type of punter is no longer acceptable with corporates due to turnover tax so betting in the corporate world for myself is done

I used to pay friends 10% commission on closure now I don’t bother 

Anyone who bets with Corporate’s should forget fixed odds they are that poor now that best tote wins nearly every time

I still bet professional on Sport Rugby League and H2H golf but this is with the NSW Tab I prefer to walk into the Club or Tab and deal with the automated service 

Dr Nick has given it the flick and when one of the best is getting out what hope the rest once punters start moving offshore and recreational punters start turning to sport for more of a kick out of their  buck you watch the stake prize money start to drop

Edited by VC!
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On the subject of tote pools no surprise to read/see the decline

Back in the early 80s still at High School I got my parents to buy a teletext TV so I could study pools and do my own market movers I can remember back then the win pools used to reach between 30-40k per race

The win pools on the NZ Tab were very similar today in comparison to the 1980s, how sad🥺

Today the money is spent far and wide Fixed Odds Tab, tote odds Tab, Offshore bookmakers, Australian Tab, and Betfair, the money is spread way too far and the tote pools are pathetic only good for 50c $1 exotics and Win bets up to $100/$200 before causing damage

Same in Aus the Melbourne Cup win pools before Corporate’s used to be about 22 million NSW and 22 million VIC give or take a million 

HK were very much against BF getting involved betting on their product, but it hasn’t affected them at all, like Mardi said no fixed odds in HK their tote is the most powerful on the planet, prices can fluctuate very very late when the last couple are moving into the gates as the big syndicates unload, this not to show their hand, however if you study the exotic pools you can more often guess which the market movers maybe 

The win pools average around 4 million plus as does the place pools the Quinella pools 4 million as is the duet pools and the Trifecta pools close to a million

So one could Box 3 horses in a quinella $10,000 times at a cost of $30k the quinella could pay $30 and you could win 300k with still 3.7 million left in the pool to pay the other winning units

The HK tote is for professionals the NZ tote is for people who like playing poker machines 

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