As anticipated, bookmakers made a big assault on player recruitment during 2014 Cheltenham Festival and punters were bombarded with a plethora of money back offers and enhanced sign up incentives.
On the Money Back front, the festival eye catchers came from Paddy Power and Ladbrokes. Paddy Power’s opening day headliner was Money Back if 2nd, 3rd or 4th in the Supreme Novices Hurdle but because it reduced the maximum refund from the normal £100 to £50, its Money Back if 2nd or 3rd in Triumph Hurdle, with £100 maximum refund, was highest ranked offer for Cheltenham 2014.
When it came down to chance of a money back trigger occurring, Ladbrokes’ Money Back if Hurricane Fly finished 1st or 2nd in the Champion Hurdle was the clear winner and once again, the relatively low cap of £25 denied Ladbrokes top rating.
Overall, we witnessed an increase in the popular consolation offers such as money back if second, if second to a named selection or favourite, faller insurance and if beaten under half a length. 188bet, Betfred, Coral, Paddy Power, Sky Bet, William Hill and Winner all promoted one or more variants of these offers while Boylesports put their own twist on it with Money Back if second to any AP McCoy winner during the Festival.
Betfair applied its Cashback Extra for Cheltenham 2014, giving customers the pick of what they felt were the three most popular promotions; money back if second, faller insurance or if each way misses by one – the latter a long time Betfred offer brought back for the Festival. It was three old faithfuls that brought the visitors to Freebets.com, bet365’s Channel 4l1 offer being the most popular driver of traffic ahead of William Hill’s mobile offer of Money Back if second in any race at Cheltenham 2014 and Coral’s Faller Insurance. Looking at visitor journeys, the William Hill offer proved most popular with punters.