The Ladbrokes Coral Group have had to stop offering odds shown in newspapers printed on the morning of certain races as a result of the rise of online gaming. .
As first reported in the Racing Post, ‘The Pricewise’ idea was first implemented in 1987 as a bookmaker-supported tip service. Morning papers would display odds which would be acknowledged by bookmakers as close to a race as possible.
The system has since become antiquated following the rise of online gaming and live odds. The end of the practice by the UK’s largest bookmaker is a sign of changing times for the high street bookies.
Simon Clare, PR Director at Coral, said: "These days more feature races than ever before are being priced up several days before the race, and prices are constantly moving from the time they are first published until the race going off.”
The guarantee to lay prices has become impossible with the ever-fluctuating race markets and readily available wagers on multiple websites. Many people post varying odds of websites alongside companies which offer the Pricewise guarantee on social media, under the guise of taking advantage of the offering.
As of Monday Ladbroke Coral will no longer honour odds in 8:30am printed papers.
The old Pricewise guarantee from Ladbrokes stated: "Ladbrokes will guarantee to re-release its published prices in its Racing Post advertisements at 9.00am UK time (Sunday- 10.30am in shops) subject to no non-runners or change of going since publication. Ladbrokes will endeavour to hold these prices for as long as possible."
It is somewhat surprising that the practice has managed to persist for so long, although the perceived fairness of the offering made it very popular to punters.
Clare added: "To guarantee to lay an advert price that was finalised some 16 hours earlier due to newspaper print deadlines, often means the bookmaker ends up with precisely the opposite position in the market to the one intended. It is not only commercially nonsensical but also a hindrance to providing a modern and professional betting service on horseracing to our customers."