For better or worse, in this day and age bookmakers are a dying breed on Australasian racecourses. They certainly are a colorful bunch and while owners and trainers might spend sleepless nights devising ways to get the better of them, it certainly isn’t all one way traffic. A group of prominent 

Brisbane bookmakers came up with their own very simple yet effective scam to get at one of their own.

At a Doomben meeting in 2002, they were privy to information that the horse Bold Flush was a likely winner. Perhaps there was some gratuities paid to assure that this happened, but in any case the horse did end up winning the race.

Where the scam came into effect was by way of a $ 10,000 bet placed interstate with a Sydney bookmaker, who as part of a popular inducement to attract punters offered a service known as ‘best fluc’. This means the punter is given the best fluctuation or highest official odds that are recorded for the horse during betting.

The Brisbane bookmakers conspired to wind out Bold Flush’ s odds, calculated to be in the vicinity of 7-1 until eventually they reached 25-1. As per the rules of racing the fluctuation of odds must be relayed to all interstate tracks betting on the event so the steward on duty updated the odds to the inflated figure.

As soon as the 25-1 call had been notified nationwide, the Brisbane bookmakers returned the horse’s odds to its more realistic 7-1 quote.

As the horse duly won, the interstate bookmaker who had accepted the wager at the ‘best fluc’ proviso, had no alternative but to pay out the punter $ 250,000. He didn’t pay out kindly however, and a full scale investigation was opened with the result that such wild fluctuations are monitored much more closely these days.

Olson, Warren. Racing Rorts: Rorts, Scams and Characters of the Australasian turf (Kindle Locations 1521-1523). Warren Olson. Kindle Edition.