mark sampieri

Mark Sampieri has seen the lot, from working alongside his father Graeme – one of Australia’s biggest rails bookmakers for decades – to taking the business online with He takes us through his bookmaking journey and the birth of RealBookie.

Mark Sampieri from

Our chat with Mark covers:

  • Working two jobs… as a bookie and a physiotherapist!
  • Mark’s father Graeme getting his start in the 1960s with ‘The Godfather of the Betting Ring’, John H Griffiths.
  • Graeme’s ability to network with clients and big punters
  • Mark’s introduction at the track at eight-years-old
  • The peak of the betting ring… when was it, and how big was it?
  • The betting ring throughout the boom times of the 1980s
  • The impact of the introduction of Crown Casino
  • The size of the Saturday holds throughout the 1980s
  • The single worst result Mark can remember across the decades… “The betting ring was underwater”
  • The Irishman putting $100k on Vintage Crop to win the Cup
  • Taking big bets
  • Betting with Kerry Packer… until things got too big!
  • “He would just keep betting bigger and bigger until he won. He’d get you in the end.”
  • Professional punters are a lot smarter and more informed than they were in those days
  • Dealing with stables and big owners
  • How the bookies framed a market back in the day – doing form and market intelligence
  • Is the on-course betting ring officially dead?
  • Why there’s no reason for people to go to the races – they’re not attracted to go
  • The strongest betting rings are now at picnic racing
  • ‘The betting ring is now where people aren’t”
  • The move online… launching
  • The difference between operating on course and online
  • Offering clients personal service and honesty… Mark is ‘hands-on’ at
  • How punters have changed over the years

You can find us below or anywhere you get your podcasts:

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