Mayoral race odds offered by Aussie bookmaker

by Mia Chapman Last Updated
Mayoral race odds offered by Aussie bookmaker

An Australian sportsbook is offering odds on who will become the next mayor of a Queensland town, but experts said while betting on election has become popular, it has little impact on an election result or corrupt activities.

The ABC reports that the central Queensland city of Rockhampton has been without a mayor since November when Margaret Strelow resigned after almost a decade in the role.

An online betting agency opened its books to the central Queensland city’s by-election, where 17 candidates are running.

Specialist in experimental gambling at CQUniversity, Dr Alex Russell said betting markets have been framed on a variety of things in the past, with punting on elections always available, but growing in popularity in recent times.

A month ago, before the mayoral candidates were locked in, the betting agency included well known names, including Kevin Rudd, Christine Anu and Clive Palmer, as part of a tactic to get people talking, Dr Russell said.

“It’s just a bit of fun,” he said.

“It’s something they can advertise and it’s something people will share with their mates so it becomes a word-of-mouth thing.”

As for Rockhampton being singled out by the betting agency, Dr Russell said it was an opportunity to market an event.

The regional city was the focus of national and international media coverage when the shock resignation of Rockhampton’s mayor meant she would have been replaced by the next highest polling candidate, Chris “Pineapple” Hooper.

Dr Russell said there was nothing illegal in betting on elections, as internet gambling laws in Australia allowed for betting on a sporting contest, a race or anything the minister deemed reasonable.

“I haven’t seen any in election betting leading to corruption, but we have seen some in sports betting, particularly in e-sports,” he said.

“At the end of the day, the bookies don’t want to lose money and they’ve got all these tricks up their sleeves to make sure they don’t.

QUT Adjunct Associate Professor and former speaker John Mickel said while the betting market might be novel, people should take the by-election seriously.

“Rockhampton is a significant provincial city. You are actually voting for the progress of the city and that’s important.”

“It’s why showing up is compulsory. A lot of people who may be from other states don’t understand that in Queensland it is compulsory and it should be,” he said.

Professor Mickel said the next three years would be challenging for the new leader.

Queensland woman claims to be winner of $2m lottery jackpot

A Queensland woman is suing a lottery operator claiming she won a $2 million draw seven years ago.

The Courier Mail reports Kathy Jasmine Rado, 59, has filed a claim in the Supreme Court alleging that she picked the seven winning numbers and paid cash for the “winning” ticket at a Cairns newsagent on January 22, 2014, but can’t find her ticket.

The self-represented Ms Rado told the court that she lost her ticket in Gold Lotto draw 3315, but remains hopeful she might find it.

“This is a possibility as I am a self confessed hoarder,” she said.

She told The Courier Mail that she even visited psychics to seek help to find the ticket.

Any faded lottery tickets she finds she is trying to read using a special light, she said.

Ms Rado did not register her lottery entry to a players card because she does not “like to put too much in the system.”

“I would just randomly pick and buy a ticket,” she said.

“I do not remember the exact time,” she said of her winning purchase.

“I did not know I had won till about a week later.”

She claims in court that she contacted The Lotto and told them she was a winner, but she had been rejected by them.

“This company has gone out of their way to give me a hard time,” she said.

“I have been told by professional people that it appears The Lotto have blacklisted me or written me off years ago,.”

She has sued The Lotto, which is owned by $9 billion stock market gambling giant Tabcorp in a bid to get the court to force the company to reveal the details of the winning ticket.

She wants to use the details so she can “match this” to her recollection of her purchase.

She spoke outside court and said The Lott had given her and her son “three goes” each at guessing the time, date and type of ticket purchase and then they told her she had tried too many times.

She said the state’s Office of Liquor and Gaming Regulation had investigated her claims but had been unable to declare her the winner and she had also taken her case to the Ombudsman.

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