05/09/2016 6:54PM

Betfair to launch New Jersey exchange-wagering site on Tuesday


The first exchange-wagering site in the U.S. is expected to be launched on Tuesday as scheduled in New Jersey, though activity on the site will likely be limited in the first few days because of a paucity of live racing signals and the narrow reach of the operation.

The site, operated by Betfair, a British company that pioneered the exchange-wagering concept 15 years ago, will allow New Jersey residents to accept and make bets with other customers of the exchange at odds agreed to by the customers. In addition, the site will allow customers to trade bets on horses as the races are being run.

The Tuesday launch date for the platform coincides with a press conference scheduled by New Jersey’s Monmouth Park to publicize the opening of the track’s meet on Saturday. Monmouth Park, which is operated by a horsemen-led group under a lease with the state, has an agreement with Betfair allowing the company to launch the site under statutes requiring an agreement with the racetracks and its horsemen, which in the case of Monmouth is one and the same.

No major racetrack has a live card scheduled on Tuesday. Monmouth, which is expected to be popular on the site, will not appear until its opening day on Saturday. Tracks that will be available during the first few weeks on the site include Charles Town and Mountaineer in West Virginia, Louisiana Downs in Louisiana, Emerald Downs in Washington, and Woodbine outside Toronto, Canada, according to Betfair.

Betfair has been unsuccessful in negotiating agreements to take wagers on the races from many major racetracks. Betfair officials have stated that tracks and horsemen are standing on the sidelines as they await data generated by the Betfair launch.

For the past two weeks, Betfair has operated an invitation-only, beta version of the betting exchange, with bettors using real money. In a company statement issued in response to questions, Betfair said that 24 players participated during the beta testing and that information gleaned from the testing phase “led to several enhancements.”

One of the beta participants was Dennis Drazin, the president of the group operating Monmouth Park. Drazin has been an enthusiastic supporter of Betfair’s efforts to launch in the U.S.

Though betting exchanges are popular in some European countries, and especially so in Great Britain, the New Jersey exchange will be the first to be launched in the U.S. Only two states, New Jersey and California, have passed laws allowing for the operation of betting exchanges. Efforts by Betfair to launch a site in California have been hampered by opposition from horsemen’s groups and some tracks.

Only residents of New Jersey will be able to sign up to use the exchange, and all U.S. bets on the exchange will be required to be placed while the resident is physically in New Jersey. Betfair intends to use geolocation technology to ensure that the bets are being placed within the borders of the state. However, customers of Betfair’s European operation will be able to participate on the exchange with New Jersey bettors. 

Betfair also owns Television Games Network, which is the only licensed account-wagering provider in the state of New Jersey. The new exchange is expected to be promoted heavily on TVG’s broadcast network.

WoodbineMike More than 1 year ago
Before they cancelled Canadian accounts this year I bet with Betfair U.K. and would not go back to pari-mutual betting.  Benefits are that you know what odds you are getting when you bet (they don't change well after the race has started (talk about crooked).  When horse racing learns from the stock market, it will be a more respected and viable industry.  As far as laying horses goes (betting against a horse) it can already be done via "dutching."  
Until exchange betting comes back I'll stick to the stock market.
william More than 1 year ago
zero liquidity
Ray Sousa More than 1 year ago
Horse racing in Britain is in a much worse state than in the states. The purses are the lowest of all the top racing nations much lower than France for example. If not for the Arabs the top stakes races would not even be able to offer decent purses. Exchange wagering did nothing for the sport in England much to the contrary it made racing a lot less honest. In the USA with much less oversight it will be a disaster . Imagine the cheats in the sport will now be able to fix a race and receive not only the parimutuel winnings but also collect on the loss side on the exchange . 
hockey_nut54 More than 1 year ago
Hope the horsemen and US tracks are wise enough to negotiate for a percentage of Premium Charges that Betfair charges to their biggest customers.  It's a complicated scheme, and may not apply to NJ betters right away, but for those non-US betters taking advantage of any increase in liquidity in these markets, a large portion of what Betfair makes is in the form of premium charges and not necessarily commissions.  Anyone know if Betfair gives part of that back to the industry putting on the show? 
william More than 1 year ago
evening, rinkrat.....How is howard?
WoodbineMike More than 1 year ago
They give back.  In UK, "turf accountants" compete for your bets.  The racing industry is supported by the "turf accountants."  The purses are often smaller but that does not affect the bettor, only the cost of horses.
Marie Jost More than 1 year ago
  Betfair has had problems all over the world with integrity issues related to exchange wagering and had to pay significant fines. A little research will keep the true horseplayers at bay. Only the bots and their algorithms will use this to fleece the naive.

Laz Chapman More than 1 year ago
the bots may make money,obviously they do. nonetheless they're not as sophisticated as professionals.
Carlo Campanella More than 1 year ago
Exchange betting will kill the thoroughbred racing industry. The exchange allows players to set odds and bet each other on the races. There are several issues with this- first off, this will take money out of the win pools on site at the track. Since racing is parimutuel wagering, less money in the pools means that big players will lower the odds- so, if someone wants to currently wager 2,500 to win at the track, the odds might not drop, or only slightly like from 9-5 to 8-5. With smaller pools, the odds will drop more drastically, pushing the big bettors away. 

Next, if the regular bettors move to the exchange and stop betting at the track, they won't put money into the pools like trifectas, pic 4s, pic 6s, etc that the exchange doesn't offer. If the exotic pools go down due to the exchange, exotic  bettors will stop playing into these pools- the size of the exotic pool has already been proven to effect the amount wagered, which is why you see $10 million bet at Gulfstresm on their Rainbow Pic 6 when the bet hadn't been hit in s month or more. 

There's no reason for the tracks to join in on the exchange- sure, they'll get their takeout from the exchange betting, but they'll have to share it with a 3rd party (bet fair). The biggest takeout is on exotics - between 15% and 25%, and if these pools go down due to people now wagering on the exchange, they'll lose their big ticket items and their biggest players (the ones betting huge exotic tickets).
Allan Weston More than 1 year ago

I guess we will see this coming year at Monmouth, if pm handle takes a hit.

all I know there are no more last minute odds drop for me as a win bettor.

you know exactly how much you are risking and getting back.

its great for your average horseplayer in Jersey.


william More than 1 year ago
what's the web-site address?  What is the commission rate?  Will Betfair penalize winning players with an up to 62% commission, as it is done on the international site?  This article is lacking a lot of important information. 
Allan Weston More than 1 year ago

Carlos Riveros More than 1 year ago
I agree DRF should not only be at the forefront of this, but better, preaching the gospel...always a step behind any new technology. 
Open A TVG account.. 12%. 
I'm not worried about that commission penalty occurring HERE. 
The problem overseas is that pools are fairly illiquid, so Betfair uses independent seeders to prop things up. 
Then you have basically pirate customers with scraping software that can scalp profits being every single entrant at different times. 
They contribute zilch to the exchange, they know nothing about racing and betting. 
On large, full pools they can be tolerated... winning from other bettors. 
But seeders have enough inherent risks to be keen to accept parasites. 
Any exchange tolerating regular bettor winnings targeted as well, is killing their golden goose. 
Bruce Epstein More than 1 year ago
Much like "on line" poker (which eventually proved to be corrupt) this is ripe for corruption as well.   Seems to me, 
anyone who plays against a horse owned by or trained by many of our US based trainers, is living a dream.
I'd like to sell you the Brooklyn Bridge and parts of NJ as well.

Carlos Riveros More than 1 year ago
Same like private poker, fixed sports games, securities, auctions, elections, court trials, banks, social security... life... heaven doesn't exist... 
RingForFrodo More than 1 year ago
Allan:  The 5% takeout rate is the driving force of the success of this wager.  Reportedly, the New Jersey horsemen, board members, etc,  insisted on a sky high 15% rake instead?  That with New Jersey resisents only allowed to wager, will create small pools and the result will be NO BUENO!
Bruce Epstein More than 1 year ago
The rake is the rake, it's a set cost, we all must live with.  No need crying about it.  Don't play if the rake is too high.  Do you play Parx, rake is highest in the country.  Yet people play.  It's not going away and it's a fixed cost.  Complaining about it, is like complaining about death and tax's.
Finding An Edge Horseracing More than 1 year ago

Trade out; it’s the only way when commission is so high.

Allan Weston More than 1 year ago
I was one of the 24.

Exchange wagering is the future of the sport

surfertex More than 1 year ago
why do you say that Allan?
surfertex More than 1 year ago
why do you say so Allan?  is it the takeout alone?
Allan Weston More than 1 year ago
Bet trick city at Tampa on Saturday at 3.35. Paid 2.30 on the tote.

Overlays galore if one goes looking.

william More than 1 year ago
"I was one of the 24."

do you want a cookie, Big Al?
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Are NJ residents able to wager on the UK races on the exchange? When I go to exchange.us.betfair.com it appears that they have full access to those large markets.
Thanks for your help.