Could affordability checks impact British horse racing?

Many column inches have been devoted to affordability checks, as proposed by the Gambling Commission and agreed by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport, which are detailed in a public consultation scheduled to last until October, 2023. Many are asking how these proposed checks will impact the average Joe, someone wanting to take advantage of free horse racing tips to place the odd bet for instance.

One of the stated aims of the Gambling Commission is to be ‘the trusted and authoritative voice on gambling’, yet, paradoxically, none of its board members has any professional experience in the gambling or horse racing industries. Even occasional punters, interested in free bookmaker bets, have hands on knowledge of the sport. Thankfully, six commissioners are due to be replaced over the next twelve months or so but, even if the new appointees are more representative of, and empathetic towards, the sectors they regulate, irreparable damage to horse racing may be unavoidable.

Many tens of thousands of punters and top bookmakers view affordability checks, of any description, as a personal affront. If those punters choose, or are forced, to stop betting altogether or, worse still, switch their attention to illegal, black market bookmakers, the financial viability of horse racing is at stake. The Horseracing Betting Levy Board collects a statutory levy, of 10% of bookmakers’ profits above £500,000, which is distributed for the improvement of the sport. Any fall in leviable betting turnover is bound to be detrimental to horse racing, yet the Gambling Commission apparently remains blissfully unaware that, if it has its way, it will be directly responsible for denying the sport essential funding.

Poor prize money is a constant cause of complaint among British racehorse owners and, with racecourse attendances falling as a result of the cost of living crisis, the Gambling Commission proposals really could be the last straw for the racing industry. As Tom Kerr rightly pointed out in the ‘Racing Post’, they are ‘offensive, meddlesome and damaging’ and we can only hope that the response to the public consultation is so overwhelming against that the ‘Nanny State’ is forced to beat the retreat.

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Who is the Grand National 2022 favourite?

The Grand National 2022 will take place on Saturday, April 9 as the biggest race in British horse racing is contested at Aintree Racecourse. The race will once again feature some of the world’s top race horses competing for a £1 million prize purse.

The race always attracts a large field with some of the best trainers in the United Kingdom and Ireland entering their best horses. This year will be no different. The Grand National always attracts horse racing punters with great odds and the chance to win large profits. Bettors can visit Grand National betting sites offers to get the latest odds and bet bonuses before wagering on the ponies.

What is the Grand National?

The Grand National is one of the biggest jumps horse races in the world. It offers a remarkable £1 million prize purse to the competitors of the race. While the Grand National is the main attraction at Aintree, there are other horse races that take place across the three-day event.

In total, the Grand National 2022 festival offers up 21 races with seven races taking place each day. The festival kicks off on Thursday, April 7 and continues until Saturday, April 9.

The Grand National course

The Grand National race is contested over a distance of 4 miles, 2 furlongs and 74 yards. The race is open to competitors who finished in the first four places of any steeplechase covering a distance of 2 miles, 7 furlongs, and 110 yards or more. In addition, the horses must have run in a minimum of three steeplechases altogether. Race horses must be rated a minimum of 125 and be seven-years old or older.

There is a total of 30 fences for the horses to jump. The course includes Becher’s Brook, a fence that is famous for its steep landing. Becher’s Brook is jumped twice during the Grand National. Although Becher’s Brooke was reshaped for safety, it continues to be a fearsome obstacle and one of the most infamous in jumps racing.

Becher’s Brook is followed by Foinavon, which can end a horse’s race if it isn’t dealt with accordingly. Although it isn’t as hazardous as Becher’s Brook, Foinavon can bring a competitor’s day to an abrupt end. The jump was named after famed horse, Foinavon, who won the 1967 Grand National at odds of 100/1.

The course’s most unique jump is the Chair. The obstacle is tall and deep with slightly raised ground on the landing side. A water jump follows the Chair, which is jumped only one time.

Who is the Grand National 2022 favourite?

Delta Work, trained by famed trainer Gordon Elliott, is the Grand National 2022 favourite. Delta Work defeated two-time Aintree winner and stablemate Tiger Roll in March at Cheltenham in the Cross Country Chase.

Elliott will also bring Escaria Ten to the Grand National 2022. Escaria Ten is considered a major contender to win the top prize at Aintree after defeating Ted Walsh’s Any Second Now. Other top contenders to win the Grand National 2022 are Enjoy D’allen, Longhouse Poet, Farclas, Run Wild Fred and Burrows Saint.

The Charlie Longsdon’s Snow Leopardess is one of Great Britain’s top contenders to win the race. Snow Leopardess is aiming to be the first mare to have a foal prior to winning the Grand National.