Olympics 2008 in Beijing have already started and more than 60 out of 302 gold medals have been decided. China has currently won most gold medals (17) but USA leads the overall medal standings with 29 medals won. Betting on China to win most gold medals looks like a sure bet but selecting USA is actually a value bet! In fact, there are polls and talks all over internet about this special bet.
Let’s start with the facts. The image above shows a prediction poll regarding most gold medals in Beijing Olympics. 176 members of Predictify.com responded to that poll and clearly USA are favorites to come out with the most gold medals in China. If we convert that percentage into decimal odds and make the assumption that people predict efficiently (the true probability is actually defined by the % of the distribution), then USA odds should be 1.60 and China’s 2.93. Betfair offers this special bet in their betting markets, which currently is as follows:
Ok, maybe you are not the type of bettor who relies his betting on polls. Is your betting based on news and tips? Then you’d be interested in hearing what Luciano Barra, BBC Sport research and statistics from the former head of the Italian Olympic Committee, has to say about Olympics 2008. But before you do that, look at the following images:
You can read his predictions about Great Britain’s Olympic medal target in BBC site.
Finally, Kickingbets, a fellow sports blogger, has already placed his bets on US to win most medals. He has done so since July the 27th! In addition, in his latest blog post he advises to bet on US to win most Gold Medals. Here’s his betting tip:
“China probably should be favourites to win most Gold medals, but the market has over-reacted to their (limited) early success.[…] However, I believe the latter half of the Olympics substantially favors the US (the Athletics only starts in Week 2). I am therefore surprised/pleased to see that I can back the US at 11/2 at Betdaq to win most Gold medals – I’d make them closer to a 2/1 chance (at most). I’ve therefore had 8pts win on US to win.”
In case you are also interested in how many world records USA will break in Olympics 2008 (updated: my post about most world records in Beijing Olympics) there’s an ongoing poll at Predictify.com about that. Since it is still open for responses, you can actually cast your vote and see if you can predict right. You can in fact earn real money by voting in Predictify.com’s polls. Learn how!