News Mike Ashley has mellowed in recent years, so his stake in Debenhams surprised the City

The Sports Direct tycoon is well known for keeping rivals guessing. Simon Neville attempts to unravel his stakebuilding plan for Debenhams

Racing: Savill steps into Lord Wakeham's shoes as member of Tote Board

PETER SAVILL was yesterday appointed by Home Secretary Jack Straw to serve as the British Horseracing Board's nominee on the Horserace Totalisator Board.

Racing: First show

MUSKHILL is a top-priced 5-2 with Ladbrokes for the 1.45 at Chepstow - the Tote offer a more cautious 7-4 - while Iranos is 11-1 with the Tote - William Hill and Ladbrokes offer 8-1.

Racing: Punters escape betting ring blues with the redcoats

Grumpy track bookmakers are driving racegoers into the arms of cheerful, red-jacketed staff at the Tote's betting booths, Peter Jones, the chairman of the Tote, said last night.

Racing: Big jackpot at Ascot

A Tote Jackpot pool of over pounds 335,000 was only partially won at Ascot yesterday, leaving a carryover of pounds 238,492.58 brought forward to today's Ascot card.

SPORTS BETTING ; Lithuania the value bet at tempting 2-1

England are an unbackable 1-9 to beat Moldova in their World Cup qualifier on Wednesday night. But, sifting through the host of other long- odds shots in the other qualifiers, a bit of value can still be found.

Bodycote puts its cash to work

Bodycote, the acquisitive metal treatment specialists, has made impressive use of the pounds 117m it raised in last November's rights issue. Turnover in the first half was 63 per cent up on last year at pounds 100m, and profit before tax grew by 82 per cent to pounds 23m. It could have been even better, but for exchange rates which reduced profits by almost pounds 2m.

The losers who picked six winners

Ian Davies on the lessons that punters can learn from the Warwick Jackpot row

New head for Tote held up for polls

The choice of a successor to Lord Wyatt of Weeford as chairman of the Tote has been delayed until after the general election following a clash between Michael Howard, the Home Secretary, and Jack Straw, it emerged last night.

Racing: Wyatt's legacy is Fourtuner

A new "superbet", the Fourtuner, will be Lord Wyatt's parting contribution to racing when he retires as chairman of the Tote next month after 21 years. The bet, based on predicting the dual forecast in four designated races, is being devised by the company for launch towards the end of the year, writes John Cobb.

SPORTS BETTING: England draw the wrong conclusions

England's spineless capitulation to New Zealand's A team less than a week before the start of the second Test has not had the clear- cut effect on the betting that some punters might have expected. Opinions about the likely outcome in Wellington vary sufficiently to produce an under-round book when just two layers - Hills and the Tote - are considered, and hunting around the independents might increase the odds in the backers' favour still further.

Betting on the Net

Live betting shows from bookmakers and the Tote on the same screen are to be available on the Internet, it was announced yesterday.

Howard refuses to let go of Tote

Greg Wood on why a key asset stays outside the control of racing's rulers

Euro 96 nets pounds 80m as punters spread wings

Work was the last thing on most people's minds at 7.30 last night but in the betting business it was far and away the busiest evening yet in a frenetic summer of sport.

Spreads stick together

The thunder of the spread betting firms coming over the horizon grew louder yesterday when the four tribes gathered to launch a united front. William Hill Index, City Index, IG Index and Sporting Index will now be governed by the Sports Spread Betting Association.

SPORTS BETTING: Nocturnal lure of the spread firms

The first five days of cricket's World Cup have seen matches between serious sides and no-hopers (with England apparently cast in the latter role by their loss to New Zealand).
Latest stories from i100
Career Services

Day In a Page

A
Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Seven Cities of Italy
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Prague, Budapest and Vienna
Lake Garda
Minoan Crete and Santorini
Prices correct as of 15 May 2015
Abuse - and the hell that came afterwards

Abuse - and the hell that follows

James Rhodes on the extraordinary legal battle to publish his memoir
Why we need a 'tranquility map' of England, according to campaigners

It's oh so quiet!

The case for a 'tranquility map' of England
'Timeless fashion': It may be a paradox, but the industry loves it

'Timeless fashion'

It may be a paradox, but the industry loves it
If the West needs a bridge to the 'moderates' inside Isis, maybe we could have done with Osama bin Laden staying alive after all

Could have done with Osama bin Laden staying alive?

Robert Fisk on the Fountainheads of World Evil in 2011 - and 2015
New exhibition celebrates the evolution of swimwear

Evolution of swimwear

From bathing dresses in the twenties to modern bikinis
Sun, sex and an anthropological study: One British academic's summer of hell in Magaluf

Sun, sex and an anthropological study

One academic’s summer of hell in Magaluf
From Shakespeare to Rising Damp... to Vicious

Frances de la Tour's 50-year triumph

'Rising Damp' brought De la Tour such recognition that she could be forgiven if she'd never been able to move on. But at 70, she continues to flourish - and to beguile
'That Whitsun, I was late getting away...'

Ian McMillan on the Whitsun Weddings

This weekend is Whitsun, and while the festival may no longer resonate, Larkin's best-loved poem, lives on - along with the train journey at the heart of it
Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath in a new light

Songs from the bell jar

Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath
How one man's day in high heels showed him that Cannes must change its 'no flats' policy

One man's day in high heels

...showed him that Cannes must change its 'flats' policy
Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Dominic Rossi of Fidelity says his pressure on business to control rewards is working. But why aren’t other fund managers helping?
The King David Hotel gives precious work to Palestinians - unless peace talks are on

King David Hotel: Palestinians not included

The King David is special to Jerusalem. Nick Kochan checked in and discovered it has some special arrangements, too
More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years

End of the Aussie brain drain

More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years
Meditation is touted as a cure for mental instability but can it actually be bad for you?

Can meditation be bad for you?

Researching a mass murder, Dr Miguel Farias discovered that, far from bringing inner peace, meditation can leave devotees in pieces
Eurovision 2015: Australians will be cheering on their first-ever entrant this Saturday

Australia's first-ever Eurovision entrant

Australia, a nation of kitsch-worshippers, has always loved the Eurovision Song Contest. Maggie Alderson says it'll fit in fine