What are the bookies margins on golf?

What are the bookies margins on golf?

Bookmakers make a 'book', a table of odds, in a such a way that they can make a profit no matter the outcome of an event. But how?

See the: Forecasts page for info on the bookies margins on the next event.

See the What are the bookies margins on golf? article for more info.

e.g. if there were 4 players competing, each with an equal chance of winning then they would have a 25% chance of winning, equivalent to odds of 3/1.

3/1 can be calculated as 1 / (3 + 1) = 0.25 – There is a 25% chance that the event will happen.

Summing these probabilities you will get exactly 100%

Odds Probability
Player 1 3/1 25%
Player 2 3/1 25%
Player 3 3/1 25%
Player 4 3/1 25%

Instead, bookies will give players slightly worse odds as if cumulatively they have a better than possible chance of winning.

This way the bookies will make money no matter who wins the event.

In this example the margin/over-round is 33%

Odds Probability
Player 1 2/1 33%
Player 2 2/1 33%
Player 3 2/1 33%
Player 4 2/1 33%

Their actual margins

has been live since the start of 2016 and in that time we have collected odds for every pga and european tour event.

The average (mean) margin is a massive 42.5%! with a standard deviation of just 7.0. Meaning:

  • 68% of events have a margin/over-round between 35.5% and 49.5%
  • 95% of events have a margin/over-round between 28.5% and 56.5%

What this means is; if a bookmaker has taken $100,000 worth of bets on the event and they have an over round of 50% they can expect to make a whopping $50,000 profit! No matter who wins!!

So how can a punter make money?

With such high margins it can seem like the odds are against you, and they obviously are.

The house always wins but by being smarter and making better bets than the average punter, you can still make a lot of money.

Going back to our original example with the same market, each golfer should have an equal 25% chance of winning.

Imagine now the market has matured and people have been betting on the golfers. The bookmarkers have algorithms that adjust player's odds based on where people are betting so as to avoid any loses.

Odds Probability Amount staked
Player 1 3/2 40% $20,000
Player 2 3/2 40% $20,000
Player 3 4/1 20% $5,000
Player 4 3/2 40% $20,000

Here you can see that player 3 is now undervalued, with odds equivalent to a 20% win chance, when it should be 25%. Thus this is a high-value bet (by 5%)

By consistently making high-value bets you can beat the bookies in the long term!

So how do you know which golfers are undervalued? Well that's where our algorithm comes in.

In conclusion

The bookies are always going to make money and a sizeable amount at that!

But a smart punter can still make money. By identifying the best value bets, you can beat the bookies margins.

That's what subscription to means.