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30 Aug 20 12:44
Date Joined: 28 Jul 03
| Topic/replies: 1,097 | Blogger: reb's blog

On a Sunday morning in October 1978 news began to filter through that, the previous night at a greyhound track, the bookies had been taken to the cleaners. A quiet local betting coup saw bookies faced with paying out odds of almost 1000 to 1.
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Report frank60 August 30, 2020 4:38 PM BST
Sounds good Reb, TY
Report frank60 August 30, 2020 4:48 PM BST
A Very Irish Coup

On the morning of Sunday, 22nd October 1978, the nation awoke to news that simply didn't make sense. The country’s bookies had been beaten.

A group of friends from Listowel in Co Kerry and Abbeyfeale in Co Limerick had spotted a way of manipulating the betting system into believing that a racing greyhound was so poor it could give odds of almost 1000/1 on him. The dog was in fact one of the finest in the country. The bookies had been taken for a ride.

It remains among the biggest betting coups in the history of Irish gambling.

That group of friends became known as the South of Ireland Gang. The dog was named Ballydonnell Sam.

A Very Irish Coup tells how two friends had been at a dog track one night and spotted a flaw in the system. They went for a drink at a local pub to discuss it and within five days had a daring plan ready for execution. It involved punters, former bookies and ordinary people in "respectable" jobs more than willing to try their hand at beating the system.

A Very Irish Coup hears from members of the South of Ireland Gang, foot soldiers in the coup and investigating police for the first time recounting the story of the plan to bamboozle the bookies.

Narrated by Conor Keane

Produced by Conor Keane & Donal O’Herlihy

First broadcast on RTÉ Radio 1, Saturday 29th of August, 2020 at 1PM

Repeated RTÉ Radio 1, Sunday 30th of August, 2020 at 7PM

An Irish radio documentary from RTÉ Radio 1, Ireland - Documentary on One - the home of Irish radio documentaries
Report reb August 31, 2020 9:33 PM BST
Great story,frank.

Bookies were always unlikely to pay out on the bets - they would have realised that extraordinary tote price of around 100/1 on an odds on sp fav suggested something was up - under Irish law at the time gambling transactions had no recognition which meant they couldn't have been sued for non-payment by the gang which was actually led by a bookmaker.
Report cloone river August 31, 2020 11:58 PM BST
It was not much of a coup if they didnt get payed?The most important part of any coup is to get payed,
Report workrider September 1, 2020 12:52 PM BST
Correct Cloone , but don't you just love getting one over on the old enemy...Or even trying...
Report cloone river September 1, 2020 3:17 PM BST
Yes workrider.The best coups are the ones nobody hears about.Wink
Report workrider September 1, 2020 10:29 PM BST
Do you see us back on track anytime soon.
Report frank60 September 1, 2020 10:33 PM BST   Murphy Stroke a little dated lads but well worth a look, Workrider will remember the horse Gay future it can be found on You tube.
Report cloone river September 1, 2020 10:44 PM BST
Unfortunately not workrider.I feel for the on course bookies.Hopefully they will all get though it.Good racing coming up the next few months.Always love this time of year for having a bet.Murphy Stroke is a good story but it was Barney a few years later that brought home the bacon..
Report workrider September 2, 2020 6:01 PM BST
Yes Frank the picture is dated , but the job was done, fact they were Irish done for them...
Cloone really missing the racing myself though have managed to sneak a few views from Naas, Roscommon, Bellewstown, but its not the same...
Report johnoo1 September 7, 2020 1:25 PM BST
What a load of bullshit
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