The Entain-managed TAB launched its new website this week.

A bit of a build up earlier and there were some obvious changes to options prior.  On a personal level, I was sad to see Place 6 binned as I found it ideal for the greyhounds and the ratings especially finding favourites that were priced too short.

It looks pretty much like a cut and paste job of the Ladbrokes’ site which to be fair isn’t my favourite Aussie site.

Anyway, here’s my thoughts.

The Big Picture

The key point is the cosmetics are one thing – we simply want a reliable site that doesn’t crash they way the previous site did.  If that can be delivered, then while it should be expected it will at least be a step in the right direction.

Small Fish in a Bigger Pond

One of the things that is a consequence of the changes is that like we’ve seen before, NZ goes from having its own ecosystem to now being a regional “branch” of an Aussie site.  So gone are NZ custom solutions and data … I’m biased because the speed maps which were provided by Formpro Ratings are now provided by Racing and Sports Australia – as is all the other data.  I can see it makes business sense but there does appear to be some data gaps with the new solution.

The big one for me is the lack of the in-run position which I think is critical when review a dog’s past runs.  Luckily we have include the in-run position and the GRNZ still provides its form.

The concern for me – someone who is pathetically passionate about greyhound data – is that I suspect there’s a little bit of “meh” when it comes to NZ data.  Does Entain care?  Does Racing and Sports care?  A sample of one is scientific but as I was writing this I was waiting for Big Time Zola in race 5 at Hatrick.  She’s been disappointing but it looked a much easier race this week and I thought the $2.50 wasn’t a bad price given the ratings.

You can’t easily find the new “predictor” ratings unless you open the full form.

Here’s what the new form guide said with the ratings and pre race comments.

Credit to the selections – bang on.  But the ratings were just a joke.

I suppose we shouldn’t be complaining – if the provided ratings are inferior to the Formpro Ratings then we are on to a winner!!

Betting Quirks

Some other pet peeves.  The range of multis – trixies etc – is now significantly reduced.  The biggest concern is that it appears that the Will Pays are consigned to history as well – this info is critical IMO.  From a punting point of view, it can encourage punters to put savers on the last legs of multi leg races eg quaddies.  So not having this data would seem to be a definite negative.

Neil has noted that when selecting quaddies, it’s not possible to sort by price which is frankly nuts.  But it is exactly the same on Ladbrokes.

Another one that bugs me is the lack of information on the rugs challenge.  Again, that’s an option where the ratings have excelled but the information provided by the new site is worse than the old site which I didn’t think was possible.  I’m going to add a feature to track the progress of the rugs challenge to the ratings site to cover this gap.

I’m sure there will be others.  And feel free to add yours.

Being Pedantic

I’m allowed the odd pedantic moment – or two – but having worked in web management for over 20 years, some things just bug me.  What used to be called the favicon is the little image that appears on a tab – when you have a lot of tabs open, it makes it a lot easier to find the right tab.  From my experience, when the site was released the favicon wasn’t showing so at least that does know.

Two things bug me.  First, the logo is almost indecipherable.  It may be because I have a slight colour deficiency (what used to be called “colour blindness”) but it’s just a blur of colours to me.  Second, the race name is the title when I would expect most of us would be looking for a tab called TAB (and used that sentence does make sense!

I Like …

There are things that I like – the main one is how quickly winning bets are paid out.  Thumbs up!

Summary

My old languages teacher had a pet phrase “curate’s eggs” which means go in parts.  Apparently.  I didn’t even know what a curate was at the time.

Seems an appropriate assessment for the changes.  From a user experience, I am underwhelmed back expected this would be the trade off for effectively being bought out.  Let’s hope Entain continues to pump money into the codes.

Overall, I’m not convinced that greyhound punters are better off but I suppose it means there is an even greater opportunity for the Formpro Ratings to fill those gaps.

Happy Punting

 

David

 

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