With the iconic Tour de France currently under way, gambling enthusiasts not only in Europe, but also all over the world are placing wagers on various outcomes of the tour.
There’s no doubt a great deal of interest prevails to find out who eventually stands on the winner’s podium, but gamblers also place bets on who will win individual stages and who will wear the iconic yellow jersey (or green, white or polka dotted ones).
The competition here is fierce and there are so many people taking part in the race that it’s very difficult to predict who will finish in what position.
In fact, this is what makes betting on the Tour de France so exciting!
All the major sports bookmakers offer odds on the Tour de France; they also hire professional oddsmakers to calculate the probability of various outcomes so that they offer the best possible odds to their customers.
Gambling enthusiasts themselves have their own system to assess the race and determine whom they should place their bets on.
Two of the most experienced oddsmakers are Romain Lang and Michael Pett of PaddyPower.com and Unibet.com respectively, and they provided insight into how they operate.
Both men said that no computer will ever be able to do their jobs because it requires detailed knowledge of cycling as well as the skills of individual cyclists and the route that they have to follow.
Lang is a cycling enthusiast and he has been following the sport for almost two decades. He makes sure to watch all the international and local cycling events so that he gets a feel of the abilities of each cyclist.
He is also an expert in database and risk management, and he puts his knowledge together to work out the odds for each cyclist.
The information that he analyses include the latest performance of the athlete, major strengths and weaknesses, the portion of route the Tour will be taking every day, the cyclist’s psychological strength and morale, current fitness and injury status, allegations of doping and any other factors that can affect performance.
Riders’ interactions with the media are also followed in order to get a clue about their tactics and state of mind.
The performances at the Critérium du Dauphiné, which takes place in the first half of June and the Tour de Suisse also held in June normally give punters a good idea of the performance levels of various cyclists taking part in the Tour.
Other important races in the cyclists’ calendar are the four stage Route du Sud in the second half of June as well as the Tour de Luxembourg and the Giro d’Italia.
Sports bookmakers keep on changing the odds offered on the Tour since the race takes place over 21 days and the relative positions of the riders keep changing as they jockey for position.
In fact, the bookmakers start taking bets for the next year as soon as the Tour comes to an end, and the bets keep pouring in as interest levels begin to spike.