There are some big ticket sporting events that we all feel almost compelled to have a bet on. In the UK the Grand National steeplechase is the best example I can think of, but you could put the Breeders’ Cup, The Kentucky Derby, the Soccer World Cup or the Superbowl in there on the same basis. Some things just go with a bet like eggs and bacon – it’s just the way it is.
Of course, that sort of universal event is meat and drink to the bookmakers. With thousands of ill-informed punters spraying their money around on the basis that they like a horse’s name, or the jockey’s colours, all the bookmakers have to do is make sure they’ve got their math right and the money will come rolling in.