Book makers are suggesting that three local candidates will battle it out for a single seat in the Longford-Westmeath constituency.
Paddy Power and BoyleSports have made Fine Gael’s James Bannon, Labour’s Willie Penrose and Fianna Fáil’s Robert Troy strong favourites to secure three out of the four seats up for grabs in the constituency. On Wednesday afternoon Paddy Power had Bannon at 1/25 to retain his seat, Penrose at 1/20 and Troy at 1/18.
The book maker is expecting current Government TD, Fine Gael’s Gabrielle McFadden, Sinn Féin’s Paul Hogan, and Independent candidate Kevin ‘Boxer’ Moran to fight it out for the one remaining seat. At the time of writing, Paddy Power had Gabrielle McFadden as narrow favourite to secure fourth position and retain her seat in Government at 4/6. The bookie has ‘Boxer’ Moran narrowly behind at evens and Paul Hogan slightly adrift at 3/1.
Fine Gael’s Peter Burke and Independent Mae Sexton stand at 9/2 and 9/1 respectfully, with Fianna Fáil candidate Connie Gerety Quinn and Independent James Morgan further afield at 20/1. Independents Dominic Parker (50/1 ), Barbara Smyth (66/1 ), Donal Jackson (100/1 ) and Green Party candidate Manchan Magan (80/1 ) are rank outsiders for a seat, according to Paddy Power.
At the beginning of the week BoyleSports’ spokesperson, Liam Glynn, said: “The constituency betting is certainly hotting up and in Longford-Westmeath there is no sign of support drying up for ‘Boxer’ Moran who is now 11/10 to win a seat, with Fianna Fáil’s Robert Troy and Labour’s Willie Penrose expected to retain their seats as suggested by their odds of 1/20.”
With just two weeks left until polling day there appears to be everything to fight for as the race to the Dáil heats up.