How important is data in horse racing betting?
April 26, 2021
When you’re considering a bet on a horse race, what is the first thing you do before picking your selection? You may have a touch of romance about a bet, selecting your horse on the basis of their name due to sentimental reasons. You may know the owner, trainer, or jockey and will back them on their notoriety. An inexperienced bettor may just take a stab in the dark based on their odds or a gut feeling; this is certainly the case for the Grand National where thousands of people will place their only horse racing bet of the year.
The best formula to success is data-driven. You should always consider the data first before placing a wager on horse racing. It’s where the bookmakers start with their assessment of the competitors in the contest. They will weigh up all the factors about the competing horses, such as their form, pedigree, history at a racetrack, owner, jockey and trainer along with the weather and the ground.
Their traders will put all of those factors into their formula, as well as perhaps their own thoughts and feelings about a race, before deriving starting odds. Those prices can fluctuate based on performances, and the feelings of owners and trainers before the race. However, the biggest driver of prices is how the market feels. If the consensus sways towards one horse over the rest of the field, the bookies will follow suit and drive down that price to protect their costs. On the other hand, they could raise their odds in the prospect of luring customers towards a particular competitor.
If the bookies can use data to their benefit, bettors can also take advantage and use those tactics to select the right horse. The tools are all there at your disposal, analysing the form guides of horses, trainers and jockeys to the fine details. For experienced horse racing bettors, some of the data will already be wired in their brains. However, for the casual punters, it can be a difficult process to come to a solid conclusion with so many options to choose from and given the unpredictability of the sport.
Using artificial intelligence could be a way forward to solving those issues and companies are providing online tools to ease the way in which you can place horse racing bets. There can be a large amount of data to process when making a key decision, but the use of these programs can filter the information into manageable chunks. This allows you to make a simpler decision over where to lodge your stake or stakes. Artificial intelligence has been beneficial in financial markets and is now transitioning into the world of sport.
No system is perfect, especially in the world of horse racing when favourites can fall at the first hurdle and 100-1 outsiders can triumph. However, for those bettors that are interested in accumulators and exacta bets on a daily basis, the new technology could come to the fore and remove bias from the equation when lining up wagers. It could be just the formula that takes the money out of the hands of the bookies and back into your account.