Newest Review: ... mean). I found the place full of all age ranges- from parents there with their children to OAPs with their betting money in little bank... more
Good night out at the Dogs!
Greyhound Racing in General
Member Name: norton501
Greyhound Racing in General
Advantages: Cheap night out, good offers, fun £1 or 50p bets etc
Disadvantages: Can be a bit hectic- having races every 15 mins (to place your bets etc in time)
I've now been to two Greyhound racing tracks for two nights out. One with friends (Nottingham), one more recently with work (Peterborough).
On both, we managed to get special deals- At Peterborough Greyhound track £13 for entry, 2 x £1 bets, chicken or scampi and chips, 2 free drinks and a reserved table/ seats. At Nottingham there was a similar deal (£10) for entry, 2 free bets, a free drink and a meal. I preferred the Peterborough track as the Stand consists of two levels, three bars, a restaurant, a take away food area and lots of seats with a view out onto the track. It is larger and plusher than the Nottingham track and the food was better quality. There was more indoor seating with a view over the track.
I am a bit of a novice when it comes to bets, but the guide I was given on the way in explained how the bets work (ie place, to win, trio bets, reverse form, form... what they all cost and what they mean). I found the place full of all age ranges- from parents there with their children to OAPs with their betting money in little bank bags. There are plenty of people there who would hapily explain things to you if you were unsure how to place a bet etc.,
As soon as we arrived, we went to queue for our free food which consisted of standing in two separate queues- one to order, one to collect the food. The food was of a much higher standard than I expected, but we sent about 35 minutes queuing. I had Chicken nuggets and chips- the chips were small like french fries and the chicken nuggets were good quality- nice think breadcrumbs and slightly peppered chicken.
Then it was time to place our first bet. "£1 on [number of dog] to win" is pretty much all you need to say. The evening (7.30-10.30pm) consisted of 14 greyhound races. There was a race approximately every 15 minutes.
6 Dogs are first walked up and down a straight on the track so you can see them, then you have a few minutes to go to the kiosk to place your bets if you haven't already. There are a few places you can go to place bets so the queues are no longer than 5 or 6 people at any one time. Then the dogs are put in the gates and the Hare starts running around the track (a motorised fabric creation with flappy ears that looks from a distance like a Hare). Once the hare passes the gates, these open and the dogs rush out.
Normally most races are over around 420m (one lap), later on you may get one or two races ar 630m (one and a half laps). Over 28 races I have watched, I have seen two dogs fall whilst running. Both were ok, but it was a little shocking the first time I saw a dog lose its footing and roll across the sandy track. When the race was over all the handlers crowded around to see the dog was ok, that showed to me they all muck in and do care a lot about the dogs.
I found both nights to be good fun, The crowd really gets behind the dogs and the races are over in less than a minute, but it is really good fun. The odds are quite small so for a £1 bet, if your dog wins you will get between £3-5. you can place more complex bets such as trying to pick the dogs who will come in places 1, 2, 3 in order etc where the winning are £40-£100. So there is money to be made if you have the knack. I on the other hand, mananged to pick every single dog that came absolute last in every single race I bet on (about 21 over the two events). !
It really is down to random luck. I dont think you can study the form as you can with horses, and this is what makes it a good night. I would heartily recommend going to the Greyhound races if you want a cheap night out (look for offer nights such as Wednesday... or local newspaper promotions). It is good fun for all the family and quite exciting especially if you go with a few friends. I wouldn't want to go every week (with my apt losing abilities) but it is nice to do a few times a year as something different.
Summary: Great night out, good for a change or something new