Weekly insights into our crazy world.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014



On Sunday, Pro Rory McIlroy won the 2014 British Open by two strokes.  It was his third Major Title, his first in native Britain. Confidently, the handsome 25 year-old hoisted the Claret Jug high above his head. His smile said it all...he just added $1.6 million to the $15 million in prize money he has already won. But most importantly, Rory McIlroy cemented his perch atop the World Golf Rankings. (Tiger who?) However, no one was happier than Gerry McIlroy, the golfer's father.

Why? Because ten years ago...when Rory was only fifteen years old...the overly proud papa walked into the Ladbroke's Casino in London. He inquired about placing a Special Odds Request. See, in England, it's still legal for a wagering house to accept a bet on anything the customer desires. Simply put: Anyone can ask for odds on any event they choose. On this day in 2004, Ladbroke's calculated the odds for a teen sensation named Rory McIlroy to win the British Open in the next ten years.

Although Rory was a very promising upcoming competitor, the chances of being one of the ten men skilled enough to win the nation's top tournament are astronomical. (In gambling terms, that means 500 to 1.) Nonetheless, Gerry plopped down £200, grabbed the betting slip and waited. Three years later, at eighteen, Rory cracked the Top 50 rankings. The next year, he won his first PGA event. Dad was getting excited. With wins in the PGA Championship and the US Open it was just a matter of time before young McIlroy won the British. Dad strolled into Ladbroke's and presented the ten-year-old scrap of paper and smiled.

"We take chances on bets like this," Ladbroke's spokesperson Rachel Bridge explained. "On this one, we have egg in our face. Rory's father is having champagne on us tonight!" In reality, the wagering house loves such action. Aside from F1 Racer Lewis Hamilton (whose father won a similar wager) these bets rarely pay. Ladbroke's took over 300 Special Odds Requests last year from other delusional parents and will likely win all of them.

In summary...dear readers...our advice at the DUNER BLOG is to stay away from the Teaser Bets. Casinos worldwide post them the lure silly gamblers into their den.  Prior to the start of the World Cup, 167 people took the 175-1 odds that Luis Suarez would bite an opponent in a match. Ladbroke's again lamented the payouts, but snickered at all the cash they won on the thirty-one nations that didn't win. Today's sucker bet: Who killed Lucy Beale on Eastenders?  Les Coker is the favorite at 4-1.

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