The Olympic Games are finally behind us and Team GB brought great pride to the country – winning medal after medal and putting on a fantastic show. But it wasn’t only athletes who won big in the London Games. Bookmakers have reported that betting on the Olympics exceeded all expectations, bringing in millions for UK sports betting sites.
The bookmaker, Ladbrokes has estimated that around GBP 80 million in turnover was seen by UK bookies during the Olympic Games and this is an incredible increase when compared to the mere GBP 4 million wagered on the Beijing Olympics only four years ago.
There are several reasons why the British public took to their favorite bookie sites in droves. For one, it was the perfect way for them back Team GB, and if their performance is anything to go by, they definitely did the public proud. The media also played a huge part in bringing the patriotism and pride of the London Games to the public, reporting about each event and subsequent medal at length and hammering home the message that the whole of Britain is behind Team GB.
As a result, Coral Gambling reported that millions said that they would place their first bet during the Olympics – which is quite a feat.
So where did most of the money go? It is not difficult to understand why the British public (and others around the world) bet the highest on the most anticipated event of the entire games – the 100 m Men’s Final, where Usain Bolt was favorite at bookies to win gold. ‘Lightening Bolt’ did not disappoint in his performance, not only winning the 100m, but also going on to make Olympic history by winning the 200m Men’s Final as well. Spectators went wild, and so did the betting public which enjoyed a great haul as a result of this double victory.
Now that the Olympics are over, it doesn’t mean that betting on this event needs to end. Punters who want to keep the magic alive can bet on a number of post-Olympic specials such as which gold winner will win the BBC Sports Person of the Year award.