Every year the sports betting industry has a special day that is very different to any other the year round. Well that was until last year when AP McCoy actually won the damn thing now there’s nowhere as much fun in it.
Really though, the Grand National is a day with no equal in the world of horseracing. Ascot has its hats, Epsom has its famous bends and Cheltenham has the gold. To win at Aintree is very special though. The most remarkable thing about it all though is the type of punter that gets suckered in.
It’s the race that those who hate, and I mean HATE, to gamble may even decide to have a punt on every April.
We spoke to a number of the leading sports books on the issue of acquisitions on National day and the response was unanimous.
When asked whether acquisitions are higher on the day, Garry McGibbon, from StanJames, said, “People like to have a bet with us on Grand National day, which then allows them to claim their free bet, so they do have an incentive to open an online account.”
He continued: “Not only that, but the convenience of online betting is hitting home more and more. It’s much more preferable to having to trundle down the road in all weathers to go into a betting shop. “
Victor Chandler spokesperson Charlie McCann was also in agreement, and said, “This is the biggest betting day of the year and we have a number of offers to tempt not only the once a year but the more seasoned punter.”
Totesport spokesperson George Primarolo did have a slightly different opinion though. He said, “There is an increase in remote customer acquisitions on Grand National day but it’s not as big as many would believe. If punters are interested in betting and racing, chances are they will already have an account whilst once-a-year punters tend to head down to their local betting shop – that’s where we see the biggest influx of new customers.”
Tony Calvin at Betfair highlighted the fact that the race is no longer as unpredictable as it once was and punters are clocking onto this.
“It may be something of a cliché but the once-a-year punters come out in force, and increasingly the more serious, bigger players bet on the race,” Calvin said.
“The Grand National has a reputation of being a lottery and, while luck clearly plays a role in any 40-runner race, that is no longer the case. The race is becoming increasingly high class, attracting a better class of horse, and that gives punters more confidence to bet.”
Paddy Power, no stranger to offering a little more to the punter, is pining for those new punters by paying five places in the race.
Sharon McHugh said, “It’s a day when a huge number of people who don’t normally know one end of a horse from the other get involved and we see huge interest in the race. In addition, the traditional bookies still pay a measly four places, so we get plenty of new bettors attracted by the fact that we pay five.”
Last but by no means least, Betfred is hoping that Fred Done flashing his mug on national TV will help with their acquisitions on the day.
“The Grand National will hopefully see a huge spike in new customers especially after our recent sponsorships and TV advertising. We’ll be taking a view on some of the leading fancies and offering value to punters both new and existing,” said spokesperson Mark Pearson.
Therefore, the overwhelming message from the bookies is that new acquisitions are the norm on National day.
We’ll have a preview of who the bookies think is a shoo in for victory later on today but in the meantime take your pick of any number of these bookies to place your bets with.