Somewhere in Lib Dem HQ is a top secret target list. These aren’t the seats Nick Clegg visits; it’s an underground movement behind enemy lines. Not even Clegg will know the full battleplan. When Chris Rennard was leading campaigns, it was said that “the leader could never be trusted enough to see the canvas returns”. That probably still holds true.
Sadly I’ve failed in a long quest to uncover the list, but I’ve been given a few hints. The odds on Lib Dem wins have shortened considerably of late and I was waiting for a better moment to put down some money. But I’ve waited long enough. It’s time to take the gamble.
The strategy, if you can call it that, is to lay £5 on a eight seats that the Lib Dems have an outside chance of winning. They are split into four categories:
Vince visits: If Cable is in town, you know the Libs see an opportunity. They are usually not as sure fire as Clegg visits, but potentially better value bets. I’ve put my money on Lib Dem wins in Ashfield at 5/2 and Redcar at 7/4.
Tory weak spots: The Tories are on the defensive on some seats where they had been pretty confident of winning with an increased majority. Some Tory MPs face expenses problems (Eastbourne) others are just unused to dealing with a Lib Dem onslaught. I’ve taken Wells at 7/5 and Weston-Super-Mare at 7/4.
Newcastle Sweep The Lib Dems are polling exceptionally well in the North East. There are hopes of winning two to three seats in Newcastle. Labour will face an uphill task turning out their vote. My bets: Newcastle Central at 2/1 and Newcastle East at 13/8.
Long shots: Vulnerable. But will require a big Lib Dem surge. Purely based on some insider tips. Fully expect them to be over-optimistic punts. But these are probably the most generously priced Lib Dem seats around. The bets: Woking at 6/1 and Mid Sussex at 6/1.
Legal disclaimer: It goes without saying that our tips are almost certain to be worthless duds. Please do not try this at home or at work unless you’re looking to give money away. There will also be no wagers on “facts” we’ve discovered through our work (such as a candidate calling a press conference to announce they will drop out).
|Who will win Dundee West?||Labour||£5||6/4||William Hill||tbc|
|Who will win Brighton Pavilion?||Labour||£5||7/2||William Hill||tbc|
|Total number of Lib Dem seats||60-69 seats||£5||4/1||Paddy Power||tbc|
|Who will win Harrow West?||Conservatives||£20||3/2||Ladbrokes||tbc|
|Who will win the TV debate?||Nick Clegg||£4||13/8||Paddy Power||£0|
|Which foreign country will be mentioned first in the debate?||America||£1||8/1||Paddy Power||£9|
|What size audience for the last TV debate?||5m-9.99m||£5||3/1||Ladbrokes||£20|
|What size audience for the last TV debate?||10m-14.99m||£10||5/4||Ladbrokes||£0|
|How many seats will the Conservatives win?||301-350||£15||4/5||PaddyPower||tbc|
|Total bets and return||£70||£29|
|Who will win Cardiff South?||Lib Dems||£10||40/1||William Hill||tbc|
|Who will win Cardiff West?||Tories||£10||4/1||Betfair||tbc|
|What will voter turnout be?||Under 67.5 per cent||£20||8/11||Sky Bet||tbc|
|Who will win Mid Sussex?||Lib Dems||£5||6/1||Paddy Power||tbc|
|Who will win Newcastle East?||Lib Dems||£5||13/8||Victor Chandler||tbc|
|Who will win Newcastle Central?||Lib Dems||£5||2/1||Ladbrokes||tbc|
|Who will win Ashfield?||Lib Dems||£5||5/2||Ladbrokes||tbc|
|Who will win Weston-Super-Mare?||Lib Dems||£5||7/4||Betfair||tbc|
|Who will win Wells?||Lib Dems||£5||7/5||Betfair||tbc|
|Who will win Redcar?||Lib Dems||£5||7/4||Ladbrokes||tbc|
|Who will win Woking?||Lib Dems||£5||6/1||Ladbrokes||tbc|
|Total bets and return||£80|