The Press: The Sporting Life

In his wood-paneled London office near Covent Garden's clamorous produce market, A. B. (for Arthur Bernard) Clements, 60, editor of the Sporting Life, sat down one morning last week to flip through his mail. As usual, it contained requests for him to arbitrate disputes between British horse-race bettors and their bookies. As usual, Clements prepared a judicious answer to each query.

Bets, under British law, are not contracts, and disputes over them cannot be taken to court. Instead, Britain's racing fans toss their problems to Editor Clements and the daily Sporting Life. They get straight, prompt answers, which in track circles have...

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