Punters set to rue “related contingency” clause

Hill's - Dawn Approach doubles an error

Hill's - Dawn Approach doubles an error

The bookmakers’ get out of the “related contingency” clause is set to strike an unknown number of William Hill punters if Dawn Approach pulls off a win in the Epsom Derby on Saturday. The bookmaker does not expect to pay out at odds of 102-1 to people who backed the Godolphin owned colt on the ante-post market to pull off a 2000 Guineas/Derby double.

The related contingency clause refers to situations where the result of one event directly influences the market for another, later one. Kate Miller, PR director at William Hill explained, “Bookmakers do not offer multiple opportunities whereby the result of one event can directly affect the pricing of a second one. Examples of this might be England to win the first group match of a tournament doubled with winning the group overall, or a horse to win a Derby trial and then go on to win the Derby.”

Hills took a number of this kind of bet on Dawn Approach doubling up on the morning of the Dewhurst Stakes last October, but they should not have been available and should have been refused. Miller claims they have done their best to meet people half way, saying, “Customers were allowed to place straight doubles on the two events in error. We’ve contacted these customers to offer generous settlements or alternative settlements as per our rules.”

There is a glimmer of hope for the unlucky folk who thought they were sitting on a good return, because one Irish punter who had €20 at 5/1 and 16/1 has raised the matter with the Independent Betting Adjudication Service. Miller said, “We’ll abide by its findings and apply them to all customers if we are found to be at fault or incorrect. It was an error on our part, which is unfortunate, but I believe we’ve offered reasonable terms and settlements.”

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1 reply
  1. rob says:

    William Hill are so wrong here:

    They did not have a special price market available at the time the bet was struck – so no “error” was ever made just a normal double they willingly offered.
    Their terms and conditions on “special markets” with “related contingencies” does not apply if no such market is on offer.
    Only the UK Gambling Commission have the legal authority to void a UK bet and WH have attempted to void the majority of the potential payout.
    That is illegal.
    It is incorrect racing mathematics to ever contemplate that a related contingency exists between winning an 8f straight race for 2000g and also a 12f+ race on the helter-skelter track at Epsom for the Derby. The majority of milers cannot even get 12 furlongs at a slow pace let alone 12f+ at the Derby blistering pace The statistical evidence is that a winner of the 2000G has a far worse chance of winning the Derby than a placed horse, or non 2000G horse. So if you want to relate contingencies, the odds should have increased from 64/1 not shrunk to 15/1.
    Odds are those that relate to probabilities based on what was known when the bet is struck – not when someone realises that a live bet is still on after the first leg.
    There was no certainty that the horse would even train on as a 3yo, let alone line up for both races. A high probability of not even getting 2 runs for your money let alone wins.
    WH are confusing the fact that ignorant once a year punters will view the 2000G winning horse they have actually heard of as having an excellent chance of winning the Derby – so they will lower the price to around evens to attract the mug bets, when 4/1 would be scandalously short. Price is price – it is sometimes an estimate but it is not probability.

    For the sake of honouring in full a bet they willingly made, WH and UK shop bookmakers have heaped the very worst kind of publicity on themselves – that a bookmaker will not pay out even if you win. The only good news is that on-course bookmakers have at last realised that cheating punters is self-defeating and there are now strong moves to insist on fair play customer dealings that used to be their badge of honour in times gone by.

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