This is a mixed gambling blog, and I have spent the last 5 days at Royal Ascot.
I did this, as a bookie in the Silver Ring.
These are my thoughts ...
1. The UK economy is fucked, and people have little disposable income. Racing is fine and good, but, by the time someone has paid between £20-£40 to get in, (even in the Silver Ring), bought an outfit, paid for travel, bought some food/drink, they have v little left, to actually gamble with.
2. This is June .. its supposed to be summer .. where the fuck is it ?
3. The expenses for a bookmaker to bet, are almost prohibitive. To work the 5 days, the costs, even with 3 staff members, are :
Badge fees .. £752 ,, including marketing fee
Extra gate passes for staff .. £125
Staff wages .. 3x£100 per day, x 5 = £1500
Hotel costs .. u cant drive 200 miles each day .. £800
Food .. £ 80
Rent of Joint .. £125
Wi-fi . £60
Equipment / stationary / wear and tear etc .. + laptops getting drowned .. I wont count.
So, before u have struck a bet, you have had to shell out .. £3700 or so, and that's before u have bought the licence to work .. which in our case, cost £20k.
Over the week, we took £25k, and won £6k gross, £2300 net. That's £2300 for 5 days, of really hard work .. am not sure, its that great, but, I suppose its a job.
Atmosphere was largely jovial, despite a monster fight, that erupted in front on us, on Day 2. Ascot security is only average .. I believe a police presence costs £300 per man per day, and the course management decide not to employ many .. when problems arise, the on-course security, can only do so much.
As a bookie, u have to lug your kit .. normally 2 trolley-loads, from the car-park, to the track. This isn't easy, and its v physically demanding.
After the week, you are shattered .. there are 70-100 bookies in the silver ring, and its v competitive.