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THE BOTS STRIKE AGAIN (874 Views)

August 20, 2021 01:27AM
This past Saturday night, in the last race at Delmar, Anna Fantastic went into the gate at 5-1. Anna Fantastic won. Anna Fantastic returned 9-5.mThere was no intermediate drop. 5-1 to 9-5 in one freaking flash - the last flash. I saw a blog on Monday stating that approximately $70k- more than 40% of the win pool- was bet in the last 90 seconds of betting. A sophisticated bettor might say that the batch bettors responsible for this last flash merely took advantage of sophisticated algorithms and in recognition of the fact that Anna Fantastic was far less than 5-1 in the exotics, merely “corrected” the win price. Beyond a contest I was playing I had no economic interest in the result and on a certain level have no problem with the batch bettors taking advantage of their hard work and gaming the system to their advantage. Capitalism at its most ruthless.

Where I have a major problem - and so should everyone reading this- is the complicity of the racetracks in permitting this to happen- time and time again. A $100 becomes a $40 exacta “in a flash” and a winning day becomes a losing day.There is no reason for anyone to believe this will stop anytime soon. We ( horseplayers) get what we deserve and continue to play a game where no one- absolutely no one- has our backs. I have enjoyed this game for more than50 years, made friends and have had memorable moments ( both good and bad). At this point however, if I continue to bet, no matter how modestly, all I am is a schmuck. Why in the world would I continue to spend my free time and effort playing a carnival game where I am convinced- beyond per adventure- that I am not being treated fairly.

I am advised that today, as I was drafting this post, NYRA announced that the bots would be cut off from win betting at 2 minutes to post. Some might argue that this is a start! Some also might argue that this is. a public relations ploy and if NYRA really had our backs, they would cut off all betting to the bots well before post time, including exotics, where the impact of the bots is less readily apparent to mere. mortals.

Horseplayers have a well deserved reputation for allowing themselves to be abused. This is just the latest example. I will continue to handicap (I really enjoy it and consider myself competent) and will invest most of horse racing funds to playing contests where the impact of the bots is not as pronounced. I leave you all with a movie metaphor- in the Untouchables, Sean Connery is bleeding to death when Kevin Costner (Eliot Ness)finds him. Connery grabs Costner and in a dying, raspy and desperate voice screams “WHAT ARE YOU GOING TO DO ABOUT IT”. Question posed to each of you who read this post. Good luck and stay safe. Richard
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THE BOTS STRIKE AGAIN (874 Views)

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