Odds analysts at live sports betting website MyBookie say that Elon Musk and SpaceX are the most likely to send a crewed mission to Mars first out of all the people and organizations who are currently attempting to reach Mars. One of their analysts, David Strauss, said:
“Bezos may have the discipline, but Musk has the infrastructure and just the right amount of craziness to make a successful mission happen. The days of government organizations staging trip to another planet are behind us. I would be surprised if NASA truly makes it back to the moon.”
MyBookie sent me this breakdown on the question of, "Who Will Be the First Organization to Send a Manned Mission to Mars?":
  • Space X: -300 odds or 75% chance
  • Blue Origin: +400 or 20% chance
  • Boeing: +500 or 17% chance
  • US Space Force: +2000 or 5% chance
  • Russia: +4500 or 2% chance
  • NASA: +6000 or 1.5 percent chance
I also caught up with analyst Raphael Esparza, an analyst who helped run the numbers to generate these odds, for this interview:
Heidi: What inspired you to analyze which organization has the best chance of being the first one on Mars?
Raphael Esparza: It’s funny how you say that because for me, being probably the least person who didn’t really finish a lot of college stuff, but in 2015, I was asked by Popular Mechanics on who would first step foot on Mars and I think is 2015 is when Elon Musk really started to start mentioning that he was close to inventing his rocket or close to testing and all that, so that was the big thing. I think it was sometime in September I did that interview and I did the odds on stuff like that, so in September ’15, I did the first set of odds and now we have just been readjusting and redoing it year after year because it’s been getting a lot of plugs, thank you for Elon Musk, SpaceX, Boeing, Space Force, Russia, NASA, to keep on mentioning how their rockets or spaceships or whatever, that they’re very enthused and ready to go. Just trying to see who can be the first person or first human to be set on Mars.
Heidi: What factors do you think the private aerospace industry has going for it that makes it more likely than NASA to be the first on Mars?
Esparza: Well, I mean, I think everybody would love to see NASA be the first one to Mars, but I think if you really look into reality—and when I started doing research on this and really started to see what entity was going to be, either SpaceX, like I said, Boeing, NASA and all that, the more I kept reading about NASA and the more I kept on—the two words that kept on coming up on each article that I was reading or people who I was talking to was budget cuts.
So, I mean, if you’re born and raised in the United States and all that and we hear budget cuts all the time. NASA is always on the top of that list for budget cuts and I think that’s why they’re one of the longest shots to be one of the first ones. We have them at 60:1 they’d be the first humans to be set foot on Mars or the first organization to send humans to Mars. I think that’s probably the biggest reason why.
That’s not saying that they don’t have the brains or the manpower or the technology, I just think year after year, when it comes to budget cuts and stuff like that, I think that’s why NASA falls a little short when it comes to other organizations like Blue Origin. Keep an eye on Boeing. I think Boeing is making a huge amount of efforts to try to maybe take the news away from Elon Musk and SpaceX, so I would not be shocked if you hear a lot more new stuff about Boeing. We’ve got them at 5:1 to be the first organization to send humans to Mars.
Heidi: What are some of the things that stood out for you about Elon Musk and SpaceX compared to the other aerospace companies?
Esparza: Well, I think if you’re looking at Elon Musk, I think he just has—I don’t want to say it's a sure thing, but he has everything going for him. He has Tesla. Everyone knows who Elon Musk is. He has the money, he has the celebrity income or what people don’t have, like other entities, I think that’s why he’s going to be the favorite and I don’t think no one is going to surpass him. I think he’ll be the first one because A) He’s got the desire and he’s got the funds, which not that many people have the funds like Elon Musk and his organization of SpaceX have.
Again, no disrespect to the other ones, I think if you’re looking at funds and funds only, Boeing may surpass for funds than close to SpaceX or Blue Origin or even Space Force or even the Russians or even China, but for funds reason and for the sake of, you know, Musk just wants to be the first one. I think that’s going to be hard to beat. That’s why he’s minus $3 in SpaceX and I just don’t see anyone jumping the ship and beating Elon Musk and SpaceX to be the first humans to set foot on Mars.
Heidi: Where can people place a bet on who will be first on Mars?
Esparza: Well, you can go over to MyBookie.ag and find it under our current events section. We have, not only the first organization to send humans to Mars, SpaceX, like it says, minus 300, they’re the favorites. Blue Origin, Boeing are 4:1 and 5:1. Space Force is 20:1, Russia is 45:1, which they should probably be a little bit higher right now because they had some failed attempts on some of their rockets as of late from what I heard. NASA 60:1, China 85:1.
Maybe me and you can build a ship somewhere, that’s 125:1. But we also have will humans land on Mars before Trump’s presidency? No is minus 2,000; yes is 10:1. We’re always going to put up different aspects to see what organization or what human is going to be set foot, just because I think it’s going to be the hot space topic in our generation, probably the next 5-10 years. So, keep an eye over at MyBookie.ag for more fun Mars props.
Heidi: One final question: If you had the opportunity to go to Mars, would you, and why or why not?
Esparza: I asked that question to my wife this morning when I found out I was doing this interview, knowing that she probably would like me to go there. But for me, I mean, I think it would be kind of cool to be on Mars, but at the same time, there’s probably no TVs and no sports up there, so what would I do besides walk around a planet by myself.
Yes, it would be kind of fun to be there, but I would probably want to come home and do my normal stuff. So, I would say, probably no, I wouldn’t want to go to Mars, unless they told me they had TV and my Netflix up there and then maybe I’ll go.
Heidi: Awesome. That’s all the questions I’ve got. Anything you’d like to add?
Esparza: No. Like I said, here at over at MyBookie.ag, for some reason, Elon Musk, SpaceX and anything Mars related is a very hot topic, so like I said, I would tell the viewers to keep an eye over at MyBookie.ag because we always want to put up different on who is going to be the first humans. I’m actually going research the last couple of months, will a celebrity be one of the first people to jump over and land on Mars. So, I’m actually doing some fun stuff, just because it’s a hot topic and I think this is probably going to be reality. Like I said, I would think in the next 5-10 years.
Heidi: Awesome. Thanks for your time.
Esparza: Not a problem. Have a great rest of the afternoon.
Heidi: You, too.
 

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