Cash continues to reign for on-course betting operators

According to on-course bookmakers at this weekend’s Ebor Festival, the desire to bet with cash remains prevalent in spite of the pandemic

One of the two operators on course even revealed that they only took 3% of their bets via card.  

As part of a two-week trial, two bookies were given the green light to offer betting services for the owners at York Racecourse during the four-day festival. 

Reported by The Guardian, Johnson said: “If there was ever a time when the card machine was gonna get a hammering, it was this week and it hasn’t.

“Between the two of us, over 97% of bets were cash. So I think it’s quite obvious that when we do get back to some sense of normality, racecourses have got to realise that the choice is clear and people want to bet in cash.”

Johnson’s pitch took 44 bets on Wednesday, 35 on Thursday, 12 on Friday and a further 23 on Saturday, with the bookie stating that the card machine was ‘still pristine’ on Friday. 

Huddlestone told The Racing Post that his contactless device also remained largely untouched – pointing out that the use of card betting for on-course bookmakers would not be viable in the long-term.

“There have been very few bets placed with cards, fortunately from our point of view,” he said, adding: “We were very well received by people, including some trainers who wanted to speak to us, and it was great to be at York again.

“From a business point of view it wouldn’t be workable in the long term but at least it has got racecourse bookmakers noticed again.”