Johnny Ward

Johnny Ward

Upping the Ante: Sheep-like betting firms are guaranteed to irk serious punters

Upping the Ante: Sheep-like betting firms are guaranteed to irk serious punters

Recreational gamblers love guaranteed odds, but they lead to shorter prices as timid bookies play it safe and ape each other

Upping the Ante : Haunting revelations remind us of horseracing’s darker side

Upping the Ante : Haunting revelations remind us of horseracing’s darker side

Mark Enright’s story about planning his suicide was a stark reminder of the incidence of mental health issues in the sport

Upping the Ante: Why Irish racing is still feeling under the weather

Upping the Ante: Why Irish racing is still feeling under the weather

The various storms and cold snaps of 2018 have left a lot of trainers pining for some good old-fashioned rain

Upping the Ante : No cheers for FAI’s birthday boy as Ireland continue to drown

Upping the Ante : No cheers for FAI’s birthday boy as Ireland continue to drown

It’s 51 not out for John Delaney, but he is presiding over a rudderless team and an increasingly unpopular manager

Beleaguered bookies take a hammering in the budget

Beleaguered bookies take a hammering in the budget

Paschal Donohoe’s doubling of the betting tax last Tuesday was bad news for turf accountants across the country

Upping the Ante : Irish horseracing has an elephant in the room

Upping the Ante : Irish horseracing has an elephant in the room

A dramatic rise in failed drug tests since the horseracing watchdog changed labs this year raises questions about past success

Upping the Ante: The pitfalls of buying money: a cautionary tale

Upping the Ante: The pitfalls of buying money: a cautionary tale

As the most experienced punters know only too well, no bet is ever a completely sure thing – not even in rugby

Upping the Ante : Blackmore’s tenure at the top could be on borrowed time

Upping the Ante : Blackmore’s tenure at the top could be on borrowed time

Jockey Rachel Blackmore has done superbly to lead the standings up to now, but missed a chance to preserve her advantage at the Listowel Festival four days ago

Upping the Ante: Varadkar beware: sure things don’t always deliver

Upping the Ante: Varadkar beware: sure things don’t always deliver

Backing the hot favourite can backfire, as this column discovered last week, and Micheál Martin is better value than Leo Varadkar to be next Taoiseach

Upping the Ante: When it comes to bets, long is the road without a turn

Upping the Ante: When it comes to bets, long is the road without a turn

Saxon Warrior looks good value for the Irish Champion Stakes, while Dublin to beat the six-point spread against Tyrone today is our most confident selection ever

Upping the Ante: Liverpool look good value to lift the big one in Madrid

Upping the Ante: Liverpool look good value to lift the big one in Madrid

With the draw for the competition being held next Thursday, it’s worth considering an early wager on Jürgen Klopp’s team who, when they click, are just about as good as any in Europe

Upping the Ante: Two finals, two very different levels of interest

Upping the Ante: Two finals, two very different levels of interest

While All-Ireland hurling final tickets are as rare as hen’s teeth, the Dublin-Tyrone football clash will be interesting mainly to bettors

Upping the Ante: Is greyhound racing becoming an endangered species?

Upping the Ante: Is greyhound racing becoming an endangered species?

Fans are all set for the Irish Greyhound Derby at Shelbourne Park this week – but here, as in Britain, the sport is struggling overall

Upping the Ante: Back the Hornets to create a considerable buzz

Upping the Ante: Back the Hornets to create a considerable buzz

Watford started last season superbly before a managerial departure killed their momentum. But new boss Javi Gracia has a great chance of steering them into the top half of the table

Upping the ante: Amid sideline bickering, Tribesmen provide the on-pitch drama

Upping the ante: Amid sideline bickering, Tribesmen provide the on-pitch drama

It was a week in which the blazers of Irish sport would probably have preferred to be on a convenient holiday