Is There Value in Laying the Favourite

Many professional sports bettors concentrate on the favourites in sports betting and for one very good reason. This is because the mugs tend to concentrate in this area and if you want to make money in betting then you need to go against the mugs. Laying the favourite is one method when betting on horse racing.

In fact many professionals listen to what the mugs are going to bet and then go contrary to their opinions. For the record I do not mean any disrespect when I used the term “mug”. I am merely repeating the term that is so widely used within the betting industry to describe someone that doesn’t make betting pay.

Just because someone bets recreationally doesn’t make them a mug and so I have something of an issue with that term to be honest! That’s like saying that I am mug simply because I went out to a lavish restaurant with my partner and proceeded to not be able to spot flaws in the food simply because I am not a skilled Chef.

Weak Sports Bettors

So we should really replace the word “mug” with “unskilled bettor” and that is more appropriate. The betting masses comprise of unskilled bettors but they do carry considerable weight in the betting industry.

A betting firm isn’t going to price up a football match on the off chance that they may get took for a few grand by the pros. They price up to take the maximum possible profits from the unskilled bettors and then hand some of that profit back to the pros.

This is how the betting industry works and so you need to know where the masses are going to be focusing their attention and then go against them.

In horse racing then we have what are called “steamers” and this is a term used to describe a horse that has plummeted in price in the build-up to the race.

As a rule other people start to jump on this “good thing” and the horse that started at 6-1 has dropped down to 11-2, 5-1, 9-2, 4-1, 7-2, 3-1 and is now 5-2 five minutes before the off.

Can Everybody Be Wrong

One huge question needs to be asked here and it is how could the entire betting industry be rating this horse at 6-1 thirty minutes ago and now have it at 5-2? Something would seriously have to be wrong with the favourite and second favourite.

In a weak market then this price tumble could be the result of several large bets going on at the same time. However the value if there is any value must now be seen in opposing the horse at 5-2 and laying it. There is very unlikely going to be value in backing a horse at 5-2 that was once 6-1.

All value has gone and in all likelihood then the horse has dropped below its theoretical price level. A horses odds will oscillate around its theoretically correct price but quite often unsound betting can drive its odds significantly away from that.