When it comes to bug sporting events, it’s incredibly common to see odds listed as ante-post. But what does it mean and why are those odds available so far in advance?
Basically, ante-post betting is the process of betting on a major sporting event days, weeks or even months before the event occurs. It is most popular in horseracing and for the likes of the Cheltenham Festival and the Grand National, odds for the following year can become available almost as soon as this year’s race has ended.
As an example as soon as the Grand National ended this year, odds for the 2022 race became instantly available. Tradtioanlly the odds on offer tend to be much larger when they are ante-post. And there’s a very good reason for this.
Ante-Post Betting Risks
Since you are betting on the event a long time before it occurs, there are risks. Firstly you are betting on a race before the official race lineup is known.
That means the horse you back may not even get an entry. Even if it gets an entry, it still isn’t guaranteed to run! Your horse may get injured or connections may opt to race elsewhere.
If either of these events occur, then you will ultimately lose your bet. And that’s the issue with ante-post betting markets. If you place a bet and your horse does not run, for whatever reason, you lose your money.
A very obvious example for the 2022 Grand National is that there is a horse called Kittys Light in the betting. A solid chaser with odds of 40/1 ante post. You can bet on this horse right now but there’s a problem.
Kittys Light is currently only 5 years old. By the time the next National rolls around in April 2022, the horse will only be 6 years old. And that is too young to be entered into the race as a horse must be at least 7-years old to qualify!
Should You Wait?
It wasn’t that long ago that odds changed from ante-post to Non Runner Money Back only days before the Grand National. However, the good news is that bookmakers have been switching over earlier than ever.
And there’s a good reason for this. More and more people are happy to take a punt on the National but don’t want to risk their cash. If a bookmaker holds off they risk being inundated with requests for new accounts and their systems come under real pressure.
If they can spread customer’s bets over a much longer period of time two things happen. The first is that they lock you in earlier and get to bank your cash. The second is that it’s easier for their systems to log as many bets as possible closer to race day.
The risk for you is eliminated but the odds on offer will be lower to balance things out.
Non Runner Money Back
It does exactly what it says on the tin. If you back a horse under Non Runner Money Back and your horse does not run, you get your money back.
This is usually only done on the largest horse races of the year, like the Grand National and Cheltenham Gold Cup.
Likewise for the bump in promotions. Historically, the extra places were only offered a few days before the National. But again, in order to get the customers to part with their cash, you will now see online bookmakers offer 5 or even 6 places on the National up to a month before the actual race.
Many professional punters choose ante-post bets on horse racing because it is the ultimate test of skill. There is no better way to test your knowledge than picking a winning horse days or months before the race. However, it is extremely difficult to win an ante post bet!
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