Thursday January 23 ,2014 : CURLEY DOES IT AGAIN
Major bookies hammered by a memorable day at the races.
Irish horse race gambler Barney Curley,74 years old, has done it again, taking the bookies to the cleaners for an estimated GBP 15 million in another of his famous coups.
UK newspapers reported Thursday that in his latest victory, four horses priced as outsiders before their races were all heavily backed by punters, subsequently romping home against bookie expectations.
Each of the winners was linked to Curley, a former trainer who has beaten the betting shops before in a similar way.
A spokesman for Irish bookmaker Paddy Power told the Daily Mail: “There’s no doubt this is one of the blackest days in the history of bookmaking.
“The horses have been backed in singles, doubles, trebles and four-folds and punters who have heard about the gamble have clambered aboard the bandwagon.
“What looked like a mundane midweek’s racing has turned into one of the most newsworthy racing days of the modern era and we reckon it cost the industry GBP 15million.”
Three of the winners, Eye of the Tiger, Low Key and Seven Summits, were all once trained by Curley. Another winner, Indus Valley, was trained by Des Donovan, who is a known business associate of Curley’s.
Eye of the Tiger was priced at 10-1 having not run for 481 days but was backed in to evens favourite before the race.
Seven Summits, which claimed its first win over hurdles at Catterick. It was backed from 7-1 to 9-4 favourite.
Indus Valley was running for the first time in 700 days, but still won at 4-6 after being priced as high as 20-1 on Tuesday night.
The quadruple was completed by Low Key, which returned from a 350-day lay-off to win at 4-7 having been backed in from 7-1 earlier in the day.
Each of the horses was placed in races they could easily win but due to their lack of recent form bookies priced them as outsiders, the Mail reports.
One delighted punter, London gambler Henry Willis, said: “I’ve followed Barney Curley’s horses for decades, and today has been the best day of my life wagering on the horses.
“Early on I cottoned on to the connection between the horses and the fact that they were coming in for strong support.”
There is no suggestion of any illegal activity but the British Horseracing Authority said it would investigate the circumstances surrounding the coup.