Tote unveils new look and brings back some old favourites
The Tote unveils new look and brings back some old favourites
We’re beginning to get a feel of what the new owners of the Tote are going to offer.
The return of the Horses to Follow Competition has already been announced, with the Racing Post as partner, and a guaranteed prize of £250,000.
Now, the Tote’s new look is emerging and that doubles and trebles are being added, or perhaps returning, to the portfolio of pool bets.
The new logo, which might only be for the corporate look of new owners UK Tote Group, is going to annoy some people, with its highly stylised +o+e typeface. Is one a capital +, the other lower case?
The look of the branding for the pool bets themselves appears unchanged, apart from the use of extended colour-coding to accommodate the expanded options on offer.
It’s never easy to use different colours to distinguish a product range, as you end up with some colours that are difficult to read, especially if you use pale shades.
Doubles and trebles
Those of a certain age will remember the Tote daily double and trebles, with those lucky enough to get past the first round, queueing at racecourse tote windows to exchange a winning ticket to go onto the next leg.
So, drinks all round, as doubles and trebles are being reintroduced.
For the Double, which will be available every Saturday and at major festival meetings throughout the season, you have to pick the winner of two consecutive races. Permutation bets will be available on the Double where you can select more than one horse in each race.
The Treble will operate in the same way, on three consecutive races.
The other pool offerings are unchanged, but it will be interesting to see if UK Tote Group revert to selecting, where possible, races on ITV for the Scoop 6.
They will want something to happen to bring the bet back into the headlines, such as when cleaning lady Agnes Haddock picked the six winners and then the bonus fund to take home £688,620.
Similarly, the Jackpot is in need of resuscitation – guaranteed pools of £10k don’t get the blood flowing,
Racing Post deal
It has also been announced the that Tote has entered into a long-term partnership with the Racing Post. This will see support and promotion of Tote products across the Post’s print and digital platforms.
The partnership will commence with the Tote Ten to Follow, back after a five-year hiatus, which will be run for the 2019/20 National Hunt season. It will cost £5 to pick a stable to be in with a chance of winning at least £250,000.
There will also be a free-to-play version with a £10,000 prize to the winner.
So, we have a couple of old favourites pool bets back on offer and the return of the Horses to Follow competition in the first steps by UK Tote Group to revitalise pool betting in Britain.
The technology needs to be looked as well, not least the accumulator betting slips which have to be entered by a Tote operative as they can’t be scanned by their machines.
And the complaint that screens showing pre-race pool funds often don’t reflect the subsequent dividends needs addressing, much like Oddschecker have responded to criticism that the lag between bookmakers changing prices and the new price appearing on the website is too long. Oddschecker have said it’s being reduced to 10-seconds.
And it would be good too if the Tote’s screens started to show the racing. At some tracks it’s never clear if or which screens are going to show away racing, Moreover, it’s no bad thing for the Tote to have racegoers watching their screens for the exposure it generates.
And, it’s very much in the interests of racing, which is looking at an uncertain financial future with the closure of hundreds of betting shops, that the UK Tote Group succeeds.
The sport badly needs the profits which pool betting could generate.
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