The Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs the first Saturday in May is easily the biggest horse race of the season for casual horse racing fans. Every independent agent that considers themselves a full-service bookmaker with a year-round cliental probably has a few hard-core horse bettors in the mix that take regular advantage of an expanded racebook for horse racing as provided by your Pay Per Head service, but the Kentucky Derby offers private bookies an excellent opportunity to bring in some extra action from their entire customer base.
You can start things off by offering Kentucky Derby futures odds leading right up to the week before the big race. Once the actual 20-horse field is set and the post positions have been determined, the morning betting line will be released. While you can probably generate quite a bit of action with straight-up bets for Win-Place-Show positions as well as take in a number of exacta and trifecta wagers, make sure you are also working with your price per head provider on getting betting odds for props and head-to-head matchups.
The betting public in general loves to bet on this race and the best thing of all is that most of the people wagering on the Kentucky Derby know very little about how to actually handicap a horse race. You will have people betting on the names of the horses or simply using the numbers on their saddle cloths to put together a trifecta bet. The bottom line is that the level of thought process that goes into placing bets is not all that high, even for the bettors that consider themselves a horse racing fan.
The first step to take once you have lined-up your Kentucky Derby betting board with your Pay Per Head service is to heavily market the fact that you have a full slate of futures, props and betting odds for this race. Do not assume that your customers know that they can bet this race with you unless you have already established yourself as a steady source for horse racing through your own racebook. There are hundreds of horse betting outlets out there taking Kentucky Derby action so you have to be very proactive going after this piece of the pie.
American Pharoah’s dramatic run in 2015 to the first Triple Crown title since 1978 did wonders for the horse betting business during the three-race season and people who may have not bet on a horse race since his win in the Belmont Stakes to claim all three legs of this amazing feat will be back at the betting window in early May looking for which one of this season’s top three-year old thoroughbreds has what it takes to make another run. If you go all out with your efforts to attract as much Kentucky Derby action, at the very least, it should carry over right through the Preakness Stakes two weeks later. If one horse is able to win the first two legs of the 2016 Triple Crown season, then the betting action will ramp right back up for the Belmont in early June.
If you are fairly new to horse racing as an independent sports bookmaker and a bit leery of how much exposure you are willing to take in, then do not hesitate to work with your price per head provider on some betting limits for any Kentucky Derby betting odds you do decide to post. Most of the action is going to come in from casual bettors looking to add some extra excitement to the big race. These are the kind of wagers that have a great chance to go right to your overall bottom line take for this once a year event.