Tales From The Betting Ring – Newbury 16/08/13


Friday was a fairly low-key albeit 8-race affair as a warm-up to Saturday’s extravaganza followed by Meatloaf for sweet. One firm were already basking in a winning glow before the first race had even begun. They had attended the previous night’s Arabian meeting and copped a two-week holiday to Dubai in one of the many free draws. The layer in question didn’t appear to want to have his name splashed all over the Internet adding the prefix ‘allegedly’ when I asked to to confirm the story. His grin told it all though and good luck to him, jammy bugger!

There were a few three and four-figure bets on the rails but generally business was small. Bob Stock did report the smallest wager though, a chap had a bet with a fist-full of change, not unusual there but the Tatts layer was more than a little surprised to find a farthing coin in amongst all the shrapnel.

He wasn’t alone taking strange cash-money, Andy Smith who bets as Festival Racing took a $100 note as part of an $50 each-way bet on a 9/2 shot. He hadn’t quite worked out how he was going to work out the payment though. He needn’t have worried, the the dollars stayed in the hod.

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If you have run out of readies like it appears the two previous punters did, George Cooper are offering free bets if you like them on facebook, go on, fill your boots. https://www.facebook.com/pages/George-Cooper-Racing/152498368268575?fref=ts

Andy Smith was quite happy to have his photo taken but Paul Metcalfe was a bit camera-shy. His ‘loyal’ right-hand man Ian explained the reason why. It seems that the boss of Jack Bevan and Co has ‘packed it on’ (Ian’s words not mine) while confined to a wheelchair after his recent ankle-breaking mishap. So much so that when he took to his bed at the firm’s overnight lodgings gravity took its revenge and Paul straight through the bed slats and onto the floor of the hostelry.  It appeared to me that Ian found it funnier than Paul but felt the story had to be related.

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Poyle Thomas won the Punter Southall Transaction Stakes, the race was quite aptly named as a group of backers ruined a few books by landing a quiet tickle in Tatts with a couple of ‘bottle’ bets at 6/1 and 11/2. Not with Peter O’Toole they didn’t though. ‘I took a pound on it at 6/1’ he divulged. Not all bad then. Up on the rails they appeared to be a little bored, a couple of them resorted to lobbing rolled up bits of paper at each other for entertainment. They got a bit more serious when Windfire won the next and landed a trio of nice bets at 2/1 and 15/8.

It’s fair to say the results hadn’t all gone the way of the ring though some books said they couldn’t have lost much because they hadn’t taken much. One rails layer from Wales hadn’t taken a ‘decent’ bet all day then ran into two on the same horse, Malih, in the last at well over the odds too.  ‘It’s bound to win now’ bemoaned James Lovell.

He was wrong, it didn’t. Aye Aye for him but not so much the intrepid punters.

(c)Simon Nott

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