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Durban July Betting Lifeline – Outlets Open

Lockdown level 4 provisions adhered to

In what should be one of the busiest betting weeks of the South African racing season, the step up to lockdown level 4 announced by President Cyril Ramaphosa on Sunday evening threw a curved ball onto the retail betting outlet landscape.

With our racing relying primarily on betting turnovers to fund the stakes pot, any closures of outlets could have been a life threatening blow.

Vodacom Durban July action (Pic – Candiese Lenferna)


This applies particularly in South Africa where a large proportion of the population do not have access to internet facilities to switch to online betting platforms.

The Vodacom Durban July is also a premier event for the once a year casual flutterers, who ordinarily would not go to the lengths  of registering online betting accounts for a bet.

The Sporting Post has learnt that some operators have taken steps to remove any entertainment related items such as television sets, gambling machines or catering facilities in order to create a focussed ‘retail’ type environment where the punter arrives, is permitted controlled access, places a bet and leaves the premises.

In a communication today, the Office of the Western Cape Gambling said that they were not empowered nor mandated to enforce the provisions of the Disaster Management Act nor the Regulations relating to Covid-19.

They point out that their function is to ensure that licence holders in the Western Cape comply with the relevant legislation in respect of gambling and betting.

They confirm that naturally, betting operators also have a concomitant obligation to adhere to other applicable laws of the land.

They note at the same that it appears as if the licenced bookmakers’ operating retail outlets have adjusted their business activities to comply with the provisions of the adjusted level 4 Regulations, although clarity of this aspect is still outstanding from the National Department of Cooperative Governance (“COGTA”).

The Board will review the prevailing conditions once any further communication is forthcoming.

The opening of outlets under responsible and controlled conditions will be a welcome lifeline for the Vodacom Durban July. The racing industry employs thousands and has been under severe pressure as it battles on to weather the pandemic storm.

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15 comments on “Durban July Betting Lifeline – Outlets Open

  1. Len Bloch says:

    About time the people in charge realise how important the tote is to the survival of racing since the “volume”turnover comes from the small punter who rely on the tote to bet.

  2. Thanks ED for the follow up on this. What would we do without SP? Will the tote at Durbanville racecourse be open tomorrow / Saturday?

    1. Editor says:

      Hi Mickey
      Thanks for the positive feedback.
      We would have to ask KR about Durbanville specifically
      Can let you know when we do

  3. Donald Bradshaw says:

    I have access to internet facilities and will not touch online betting , all my bets are taken at my local tote in cash. It would be interesting to know the percentages of tote turnovers of ” walk in ” as opposed to ” on line ” under normal betting conditions not influenced by any restrictions such as those that currently exist ?

    My guess would be that the ” walk ins ” would be in the majority ?

  4. Dave McGillewie says:

    That may be so Donald but if you live in the Gardens area you have no choice but to drive/take a bus/walk to the Sea Point tote or the one in the CBD, neither of which conjure up a pleasant picture. We’ve always been starved of a tote facility in this area so it’s on-line only !

  5. Arthur Talbot says:

    Bipot pool at the Vaal today was R137k.abput a 30 % decline from the norm. A clear sign that the pools on july day will be adversely affected with a concomitant loss in revenue alll round..50 people still allowed at a cremation service ,the mind boggles.

  6. Rose says:

    Can someone tell me where the nearest tote is to Milnerton

    1. Editor says:

      Hi Rose
      There are two as far as we know in Koeberg Rd
      Behind old Lorna Doone Cafe opposite Bellamoor Flats

      And then at Shopping Centre after Milnerton stables headed towards Table View
      Will endeavour to get specific addresses

  7. Previn Naicker says:

    Hi Ed
    Are there totes open in Jhb near Bedford view

    1. Editor says:

      Hi Previn
      Will ask Phumelela

    2. Editor says:

      Hi Previn
      Robert Garner said:
      ‘Last I heard all betting shops 5 provinces closed, including Gauteng.
      Get a TAB account @ wwwtabonline.co.za’

  8. Kudzanai Mugaragumbo says:

    No tote in joburg is open had to drive to freestate sasolburg to cash in my tickets ???? guess july will mever be the same

  9. Previn Naicker says:

    Thanks Ed for feedback .Appreciate it
    The tote does note have the green light but muzi and joey bring home Gtg

  10. Vivian DE Wett says:

    Will the tote be open at Turffontein race course ?

    1. Editor says:

      No, according to Phumelela

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