Miss Universe 2009 Odds and Arbitrage Opportunities

It’s fascinating to look at the disparity in betting odds for the Miss Universe 2009 contest. How on Earth do you derive odds based on looks? Bookmakers have settled into a supply and demand approach to determine the odds, and of course the result is a huge level of disparity between countries.

Australia is bullish on the chances of Miss Australia, with Sportsbet offering 3.20 odds for her to win. Meanwhile Paddy Power has Miss Honduras installed as the favourite with 12/1 odds. Miss Australia, meanwhile, is available at 16/1 odds with the Irish bookmaker.

I have no idea who will win the contest, but I do recall that judges tend to be very generous to the local contender, so I have placed a small bet on Miss Bahamas. Also, I noticed that Sportsbet offered considerably longer odds on Miss Mexico than some other bookmakers in Europe, so I have placed a modest wager on Miss Mexico. Perhaps close to the end of the contest I will exploit an arbitrage opportunity if one presents itself. All I need is for one of my picks to still be around near the end of the contest to lock in a profit. Given the huge disparity in he odds at the moment, I think there’s a good chance that will happen. Even from the time I placed a bet on Miss Mexico her odds with Sportsbet have dropped from 13.00 last night to 9.00 today.

I think this is one of those competitions where mathematics goes out the window and sentiment reigns. Good luck with any bets you make. As for the winner, your guess is as good as mine. I’m in it for the odds changes rather than the outcome itself.

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