Betstar Bookie Review
Betstar Online Bookmaker Taking Bets On Racing And Sports
Online bookmakers Betstar have had the weight of Ladbrokes behind them since April 2014 after starting up in 2007 when father and son team Michael and Alan Eskander embraced the future direction of bookmakers and joined the fray that has resulted in so many valid choices for Australian punters. Join Betstar
The foreign corporate behemoth bookmakers, such as William Hill and Paddy Power, were recognising the fertile market for online wagering that Australia represented and gobbling up the native operations and the Eskanders knew that without the capital and technological resources the big operations brought to the table, Betstar in its pre-2014 iteration was in danger of being relegated to irrelevance.
Now, with the resources of Ladbrokes, including 15,000-plus employees in Europe and Australia, 2,800 retail-betting shops and a listing on the London Stock Exchange, Betstar seems positioned to compete in the never-ending quest to be a go-to online bookmaker for Australian punters.
It is worth noting that Ladbrokes operates its own online brand alongside Betstar and Bookmaker.com.au.
All three offer identical odds and markets, with only promotions offering any true distinctions.
Typing the Betstar URL www.betstar.com.au into your browser’s address bar takes you to the main landing page-the Home tab. The background is a soothing blue colour and the layout is the ubiquitous three-column arrangement with racing, sports and novelty markets on the left, markets and odds in the centre and a betting slip on the right. The login section is at the top right-hand side and one thoughtful feature is a bar above it that shows the local time, regardless of time zone. That nice feature, however, is cancelled out by an auto-scrolling box in the middle-bottom of the page that scrolls from left to right, which is more than a little distracting.
Fortunately, once you leave the Home tab and go to the Racing, Sports, Live Betting, Promotions, How To and Contact Us tabs, the bloody auto-scroll thing goes away.
Betstar has cultivated an image of catering to the racing codes and the Racing tab is comprehensive in every regard. There is a little bit of superfluous promotional information at the top of the page, but at least this information is static. On the left of the main racing page, a section at the top shows the next five races and the time remaining until the jump, with icons that indicate which of the three racing codes, gallops, trots or hounds, along with the name of the venue. This Next 5 can be further sorted to display only one of the three codes. Join Betstar
It takes only a bit of scrolling to see domestic and international racing. Icons alongside the track name quickly allow you to determine what bet types are available, such as fixed odds.
For example, clicking on the orange FBC icon on the racing page directs punters to a page that shows which facilities Betstar has selected for the day’s racing. On the day his review is being written, Wyong was for the gallops, Maryborough for the trots and Sandown Park for the hounds.
When a specific race is selected, a page opens that shows the field. Clicking on a runner’s name causes a window to open that shows that runner’s information, such as jockey, age, pedigree, results, earnings and percentage of wins and places compared to jumps. This feature is highly entertaining for those of us statistically obsessed. Whilst, we are on that subject, the Betstar form guide, results, track conditions and other links in the left column are veritable information goldmines.
Clicking on the odds automatically adds it to the bet slip, which slides into view from the right side of the screen, showing odds and type, with a drop-down for selecting win, place and each way. Typing a dollar amount in the stake box will show the projected dividend, something those of us with less than stellar math skills most definitely appreciate.
One thing the proved entirely elusive for us was our attempt to find a market for the Belmont Stakes, the third leg of the U.S Triple Crown.
The race jumps in three days from when this is being written. In fairness to Betstar, we have to report that neither could we locate a market for this race on Sportsbet.
There is really nothing over which to quibble regarding Betstar’s racing offerings, even though we tried our hardest with that Belmont Stakes bit, and even though Betstar does lean toward the racing end of the punting spectrum, they do not neglect sports to any objectionable degree.
As an example, we looked at the offerings for AFL Round 12. We found that every match in the fixture had a minimum of 164 markets. That’s a lot. By comparison, we did find that Sportsbet was offering 228 markets for the upcoming Bombers/Hawks game, which is also a lot, and it might be conceivable that 164 or 228 markets are more than enough.
As far as the quotes went, Betstar was offering $1.03 on the Hawks, whilst Sportsbet had them at $1.02, so backing them would offer an opportunity to lose money on a winning wager. Betstar had the Bombers at $12, whilst Sportsbet had them at $17. Here was the opportunity to lose money on a losing wager.
Some Betstar Details
Betstar’s average margin is 5.5 percent, a significant bit higher than the 4.9 percent median. They do have a dormant account fee of $25.00 after six months, which in our view, should never be an issue. They do offer credit facilities and we are on record as frequently mentioning the perils of borrowing money for gambling. We are not, however, accusing Betstar of being crushers by any stretch.
Turnover requirements for deposits are about average for the industry, as are minimum deposit and maximum payout figures. Online bets have only a 50-cent requirement. It is $20 to bet by phone and it appears that Betstar still requires a phone call for live betting transactions.
Betstar has mobile applications that are at least equivalent to those of the other online bookmakers.
This is little to dislike regarding the Betstar online wagering operation. The website is top-notch in terms of markets and wagering account management functions. Deposit and withdrawal options are plentiful.