The British Horseracing Authority has charged three English football players with involvement in a betting fix. It's claimed the trio attempted to bribe jockeys to manipulate the performance of horses.
The BHA issued a statement which said: “Following an investigation into suspicious betting activity on a number of races, the British Horseracing Authority has charged nine individuals with serious breaches of the Rules of Racing.” The three football players plus six other individuals are charged with a breach of Rule (A)41.2 of the Rules of Racing in that they conspired with other persons to commit a corrupt or fraudulent practice. “The allegations focus on horses being laid to lose on betting exchanges in races that took place between 1st November 2010 and 31st March 2011,” the BHA added.
If the charges stick this will be another high profile incident involving football players and race fixing. Makes you wonder what could be going on in their own sport? Surely it would be easier to fix a football match than to get involved in racing! It's probably safe to say that betting exchanges are being used by unscrupulous sportsmen and women. However, the number of convictions for this type of fraud are rising. With the help of various governing bodies and the police, betting exchanges are becoming better at detecting unusual betting patterns and prosecuting those involved.
The risks of getting caught would seem to be very high, recently two Pakistani cricketers have received life time bans for fixing a game. The risk/reward ratio for sportsmen and women to fix the outcomes of matches or races must be diminishing all the time, lets hope this case will be one of the last… I won't hold my breath!