EquiLottery has been making big waves in the world of racing betting over the past month. A press release first published on the Paulick Report explains the idea. It’s one of those clever business ideas you see every once in a while where you just look at it and think “yep, that’s going to work.”
The plan for EquiLottery is to combine horse racing and lottery pools to the mutual benefit of both horseplayers and lottery players. It all revolves around $2 lottery tickets that will be sold by lottery retailers in states that pair with EquiLottery. Each day, the lottery pairs with one race from a nearby race track.
One dollar goes directly to the horse betting pool. This dollar is treated as a regular bet by the track. If it wins, the player is paid by the track as if he had bet in person. The other dollar goes to the general lottery fund and is treated as a regular lottery ticket tied to the results of the race.
This unique idea results in several positive things. Half of every ticket purchase goes straight to the racing pool. This increases the total wagering pool and results in bigger prizes for everyone. The people at the local track get the benefit of bigger payouts while racing teams get to compete for larger purses.
The other half of the ticket goes to the lottery prize pool. This gives lottery players get the benefit of having two ways to win. The example given on the EquiLottery website uses a trifecta wager. A person purchases a $2 ticket and receives three quick pick numbers. Let’s say 2-5-7. That portion of the ticket is entered as a trifecta on horses #2, #5 and #7. If those horses win in that order, the ticketholder has just won the racing bet and lottery drawing.
Here’s an image taken directly from the EquiLottery website to show how it works:
(click for full size)
Horse racing fans should be happy to see new “dumb money” added to every race. In order to comply with state lottery regulations, lottery players are unable to make their own picks. The end result is a bunch of extra money added to the betting pool.
A secondary benefit to the racing industry is that it will bring greater interest to horse racing. People who normally just play the lottery will now have a reason to watch horse races since their winnings are dependent on the outcomes of horse races.
The system can be used for all different types of multi-pick wagers. Tickets can be tied to trifectas, pick 6s and so on. Each day, a new race or set of races is tied to the lottery. In the original press release, Brad Cummins stated that he had been pondering a way to increase interest in horse racing when the idea struck and EquiLottery was born.
“Discovering the horse racing industry as a 30-something adult, I can relate to the steep learning curve it takes to understand this beautiful sport,” said Brad Cummings. “My initial goal was to increase the exposure of horse racing and develop new fans. EquiLottery certainly satisfies these criteria.”
It will be interesting to see how this plays out in the real world. It looks like a great idea on paper. The only thing left now is to implement the new system on a few state lotteries and see how the general public takes to the idea.