Punters prevail at Cheltenham - bookmakers pay out millions on first day

Bookmakers have paid out millions on the first day of The Festival on Tuesday at Cheltenham, with several largely backed horses living up to their favourite tag. 

Over a fifth of all bets were winners with bookies succumbing to paying out 21% of all bets placed on the opening day. 

Punters were left in jubilation after the likes of Footpad and Buveur D’Air strolled home as the two most backed horses of the day. The two aforementioned horses were also the runners with the highest stakes out of every runner and rider on the first day of the Festival. 

In total, bookies took a hard loss with well-fancied punters picks getting the job done.   

Oddschecker spokesperson George Elek said: “It was an opening day to remember for punters at Cheltenham, with a number of well-backed horses doing the business for punters. 
“The trader’s floor would have been an agonising one, with the well-fancied names on day one the Festival romping home to get bettors off to a flyer. 

Bookmakers had suffered a gargantuan loss on the second race with Footpad winning as the heavy favourite. Footpad accounted for 39% of bets in the market, but amazingly, no less than 60% of all STAKES. 

Oddschecker spokesperson George Elek: “The fourfold may be down but the first winning favourite has just romped home in the Arkle." 

Bookmakers losses started with the  first race with Summerville Boy winning as the second most backed in the race.

In total, bookies suffered losses on 11.5% of bets through Summerville Boy, not including each way shots elsewhere. 

Summerville Boy accounted for 11.5% of bets in the market, proving a costly winner given it went off 9/1.   
Oddschecker spokesperson George Elek: “Despite going off a decent price, Summerville Boy was undoubtedly one of the horses that punters turned to when the rain started to fall at Cheltenham. 

“It's also an indicator that people should look for horses who have form in the mud.”