Formula One: In-play odds reach Formula One

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In-play odds are nothing new to football fans who place bets online. For years customers have been able to bet on matches as a game evolves. With the evolution of mobile gambling apps the popularity of this functionality is one of the most significant growth areas for bookmakers.

Essentially, In-play gambling is achieved through a book maker constantly adjusting odds on factors within an event, whilst the event is taking place. In the case of football this can range from the overall result to who will score next, to whether or not a player will finish a match. Gambling within football has become so engrained within the sport it is possible to bet on almost any element of a game and do so live.

Frequent readers of this site will have seen I recently started posting gambling watch-outs or tips over a Grand Prix weekend such as this one for Monaco. In my preview I sighted Force India drivers Nico Hulkenberg and Sergio Perez as watch-outs for the weekend if the forecast rain arrived. As it transpired, the rain did come and Sergio Perez found himself in a possible podium position half way through the race. At this point I tweeted a question about what odds would be availble for Perez to win now and how great it would be if bookies offered in-play odds in Formula One. To my surprise William Hill replied, and confirmed they do in fact offer in-play odds in F1, and that the live odds for Perez at that time were 6/1, down from the 200/1 when I made my original forecast for the weekend.

Intrigued by this development, which as an F1 fan not adverse to a little (responsible) gambling from time to time, I made some enquires with William Hill to find how in-play / live odds evolve over an F1 race.

The graphs below illustrate the dynamic odds availble for the top 4 finishers of the 2016 Monaco Grand Prix. The time period involved is from the night before the race up until the final lap.

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For ease of illustration I have changed the odds to decimal rather than more traditional fractional. The figures shown represent the return a customer would see for a correct 1 (£,€,$) bet placed at the given times during the race. For reference I have added pointers to a number of influencing points in the race.

It is worth noting that at any time, a customer could place an each way bet on the result. This would lead to a payout at 1/5 of the odds offered for a win should the driver finish in 2nd or 3rd. This means that on the final lap of the race you could have placed money on Sergio Perez to win at 100/1, and been paid out at 20/1 for him securing 3rd place.

The growth of in-play betting in Formula One demonstrates that the sport is receiving attention from the broader sporting community. This development further necessitates live viewing. The gambling sector has a loud and powerful voice when it comes to the way in which sport is consumed by fans. It is possible growth of in-play F1 gambling as a revenue stream for the sport will serve to encourage Formula One Management to focus maximising audience size. In order to achieve this perhaps they will consider relaxing or reviewing pay TV fee structure in order to gain increased revenue from growth of the gambling sector.

To read my tips for the Canadian Grand Prix, click here.

To see my preview for the Canadian Grand Prix, click here.

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