Month: March 2017

Seeing is believing.

None of my racing tipsters have enjoyed a good week.  The football system I follow drew a blank.  And yet the portfolio as a whole generated a really strong profit thanks entirely to the Pinpoint Golf service.

Two superb winners last weekend at 50/1 and 100/1 meant that I was left congratulating myself on my decision to finally bite the betting bullet and follow a golf tipster this year.  It had taken some soul searching and something of a leap into the psychological unknown to do so.

I don’t like losing runs you see.  And yes, I know they’re part of the game, but there are losing runs and there are losing runs.  The sort of drawdowns you’re likely to experience following a golf tipster can frequently be long, drawn out affairs.  They can really test your punting mettle, placing bets week in and week out at long prices, knowing that it can be a very long time between drinks at the well of profit.

Faith takes time to develop

This is why I have, until this year, shied away from adding a golf betting service to my portfolio.  But then I thought I should man-up.  Golf would provide the portfolio with important diversity and if continuing it’s level of performance, Pinpoint Golf would generate strong profits.

The thing is though, no matter how much you tell yourself that something is so, it’s not until you live through and experience the good times as well as bad that you develop some faith in the tipster you’re following.  This is a lesson well worth remembering when you’re setting out.  Sure, you can read about losing runs and the best way of dealing with them.  You can try to convince yourself that the tipster you have recently joined has been through losing runs before and the one you’re currently experiencing is nothing out of the ordinary, but it’s not until you’ve come out the other side and have bagged some really good profit do you truly start to believe in a service.  The trick of course, is to keep doing what you need to be doing until that happens.

The golf brings home the bacon

So what about this week’s betting?

It’s been a strange old week, truth be told.  Six of the eight services proved unprofitable to follow, and yet it’s been a week that generated bank growth of 3.88%!

The profit all came from Pinpoint Golf, which had a fantastic weekend.  It’s the first time I’ve really had a massive win on the golf.  I’ve tried to mentally prepare myself for following a golf tipster, drumming into my subconscious and conscious that drawdowns can grow deeper and deeper over a long period of time but then we should see them relieved by the occasional very big win.  Trouble is, like with anything to do with betting I find, you can tell yourself this until you’re blue in the face, it’s not until you’ve experienced it that you truly accept that this is the way of things.

So it came as both a thrill and a relief when I discovered that Chris Williams (who is completely unknown to me!) won on the European Seniors Tour at odds of 50/1 carrying a relatively hefty stake.  When this was followed up by Marc Leishman winning on the PGA Tour at 100/1, albeit carrying a much smaller stake, I was in clover.

Enjoyable stuff, this golf betting lark. 🙂

As far as the racing goes, we’re currently in the midst of the “twilight zone”.  Cheltenham is done and dusted, and Aintree is on the horizon, so none of the really decent National Hunt horses are racing.  The flat horses are waiting for the start of the new turf season next week, so there really is pretty uninspiring stuff being served up at present.  Certainly the tipsters are finding it heavy going (the ones I follow, anyway).  Racing Service A only issued bets on Saturday, and Racing Service B and Northern Monkey have both suffered poor weeks.  No-one has excelled.

Chasemaster: Staked 6pts, -3pts.

Jason James: Staked 27pts, -0.8pts.

Morning Value Service LITE: Staked 13pts, -3.917pts.

Northern Monkey: Staked 13.5pts, -5.21pts.

Racing Service A: Staked 0.875pts, +0.25pts.

Racing Service B: Staked 18.5pts, -14.1pts.

Pinpoint Golf: Staked 38.75pts, +114.85pts.

Football Service 1: Staked 3pts, -3pts.

Week’s Betting: ROI 36.2%, ROC 3.88%.

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So how was it for you?

Cheltenham, that is…

Superb sport over four days.  There’s something about the place that seems to capture the very essence of National Hunt racing.  The honesty, bravery and sheer guts of both equine and human participants encapsulates what is so thrilling about top level sport; I am always lost in admiration of both.

A couple of observations though, before I talk about the betting.

What is the point of television interviewing the stable lads and lasses?  I mean, what they do is hugely admirable and there is no doubting the sincerity of their love for the animals they care for.  But ultimately, most are too nervous to communicate in anything other than monosyllables, uttered mostly through fits of nervous giggles.  It really doesn’t make for good tv!

And if Ed Chamberlain says “Brilliant!” one more time in response to the most basic of remarks from Ruby Walsh or some owner, I’m going to throw my form book through the telly!

There was one element to the tv coverage that made me stop and think though.  Matt Chapman was in the betting ring talking to the representative from Starsports Bookmakers just before Altior’s race.  The guy told Chapman that a credit customer had had a £400k bet to win £100k.

Now, I cannot see how anyone could see value in Altior’s pre-race odds (and look how Douvan failed to land similar odds the following day) so I can only assume it wasn’t a professional gambler who placed this bet.  More likely someone to whom losing such an amount wouldn’t be the end of the world.  In which case, why did they strike the bet at all?  If losing £400k was (hopefully) manageable, what impact would winning “just” £100k have on this individual?  It strikes me that the risk of losing was perhaps more important (ie. provided the thrill) to this person than the prospect of winning.  The psychology of gambling is a weird old science!

Betting from Sunday 12th March to Saturday 18th March

I had three highlights to my Cheltenham week.

Northern Monkey’s antepost bet on Gold Cup winner Sizing John at 33/1 was one, and what was even more impressive was that he also advised runner-up Minella Rocco each way at the same price, and third-placed Native River too, at 8/1.

Another was Racing Service A‘s 16/1 advised on Bumper winner Fayonagh which won in incredible style.  Whipping around at the start and being left lengths behind the rest of the pack, his amateur jockey kept his cool and somehow managed to roust a winning run that started from around two furlongs out.  Even with half a furlong to go, the likelihood of it winning the race looked slim to say the least, but the beast simply rattled home to get up close to the line.  Thrilling stuff!

The third betting highlight didn’t actually take place at Cheltenham.  What a day Wednesday was for the Morning Value LITE service.  Three bets, three winners, including one – So Celebre – that was advised at 2/1 and won at 5/1.  The beauty of BOG, eh?  I’m enjoying making hay whilst that particular sun shines.

It’s not all been plain sailing though.  The figures for Jason James aren’t pretty…

Chasemaster: Staked 4pts, +3.7pts.

Jason James: Staked 37pts, -32.5pts.

MVS Lite: Staked 17pts, +11.875pts.

Northern Monkey: Staked 46pts, +8.14pts.

Racing Service A: Staked 7.187pts, +1.937pts.

Racing Service B: Staked 27pts, +2.25pts.

Pinpoint Golf: Staked 32.75pts, +4.1pts.

Football Service 1: Staked 1pt, +1.69pts.

Week’s betting: ROI 13.91%, ROC 2.49%.

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The Magic of Cheltenham

So the alarm goes off at 7 am, and promptly snoozed.  Two “snoozes” later, at 7.27 am I’m conscious enough to remember that it’s Tuesday and the first day of Cheltenham.  With that thought, I’m able to do a passing impression at least, of a “spring” out of bed!

The mutt is released from her quarters and, tail wagging so hard it goes around in circles, heads straight for the door, knowing that it’s time for a walk.  Down into town I go, mutt in tow, to pick up the Racing Post, milk for hot coffee, and Irish potato cakes – a tradition that provides a nod towards the invading hordes from across the sea that between them will, over the next four days, drink enough Guinness to down the Titanic.

The ‘Morning Line’ (or whatever the ITV equivalent is known as) is set to record on Sky Plus, and after a shower and shave those potato cakes go down rather nicely whilst watching the show (hint: grate some Parmesan over the top – d-bloomin’-licious!).

The Morning Line over, it’s to the RP.  I’m not kidding here, I give it a good smell before opening it.  I’m telling you, it smells different, Cheltenham week.  If you don’t believe me, try it!

First up, it’s Alastair Down’s piece, full of verbosity and a trifle irritating any other week of the year, but this week I find he is a grand writer and racing muse.  It must be something to do with the mood I’m in.  Then, Pricewise, and then the rest.  Got to admit I’m interrupted at regular intervals as my tipster’s bets come through.  The thoughts from of the tipster behind Racing Service A are always worth a very careful read, particularly so this week.  All this must take me a good two hours or so of reading because the next thing I know it’s lunchtime.

A bacon and egg sarnie (brown sauce, of course) and a strong cuppa…and it’s time to switch the racing on.  From this point up to the last race of the day – the last two races watched on the laptop on Racing UK – I shall not move from the telly except to make a cuppa and grab a biscuit or three about halfway through.  The kids come in from school with barely an acknowledgement, and they can’t believe their luck that Dad’s too preoccupied to nag them about getting their homework done.

After the last, it’s off out to get some fresh air, walk through the fields with the dog and contemplate the day’s gains or losses.  As I get back home, there’s a big smile on the old boat race as I think that I’m going to do it all again tomorrow.

Ah yes.  The magic of Cheltenham.

Betting from Wednesday 1st March to Saturday 12th March

Not the brightest of starts to the month, but losses are marginal.  Here’s hoping Cheltenham brings a few good priced winners.  I’ve quite the antepost Northern Monkey portfolio to look forward to, and no doubt Racing Service A and Racing Service B will be busy at the Festival too.

Chasemaster: Staked 10pts, +1.291pts.

Jason James: Staked 40.5pts, -22.5pts.

Morning Value Service (Lite): Staked 20pts, -1.5pts.

Northern Monkey: Staked 14pts, +0.338pts.

Racing Service A: Staked 1.625pts, +2.625pts.

Racing Service B: Staked 23.5pts, -10.667pts.

Football Service 1: Staked 9pts, +2.92pts.

Pinpoint Golf: Staked 38pts, -2.2pts.

March’s performance to date: ROI -5.33%, ROC -0.8%.

 

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  • Access to all SBC reviews, ratings and recommendations for each tipster;
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February Review – a month of consolidation.

2017 got off to a cracking start. January, if you remember, kicked up bank growth of 7.42% and so I went into February with the primary ambition of not giving a great big chunk of it back.  In such context, February adding just a little to the coffers is viewed as a success.  There is nothing I find more galling than a really good month being followed immediately by a really bad one, and happily I can say I’ve managed to avoid that psychologically difficult to handle scenario on this occasion.

February’s Figures

The total figures for February’s betting are: ROI 1.83%, ROC 1.17%.

February proved a tricky time for the racing tipsters, with only two of the six generating a profit.  This is likely down to desperate ground conditions being the norm, which is never an easy factor to counter.

Jason James has been both the outstanding performer in February, and through 2017 to date.  No heavy going concerns for him!  His is a service that I’m watching develop with a keen interest.  I’m a firm believer that the best tipsters evolve over time, honing their skills as they go.  This doesn’t necessarily mean they become better at identifying value – that fundamental skill has to underlie everything they do right from the start.  But what they do often improve is the way they run their service.  Jason’s introduction of market comments to his commentary and the setting of a minimum price for each of his selections elevates his service in terms of user friendliness.  He is to be wholeheartedly applauded for making this move, as he is for his performance figures attained so far this year.  ROI 39.22%, ROC 22.45% (2017: ROI 27.9%, ROC 35.16%).

As you may or may not recall, I’m a relative newbie to golf betting.  I remember backing Nick Faldo (off my own bat…or club, perhaps?) when he famously overhauled Greg Norman over the final round in the Masters many years ago, but apart from dabbling in the sport a bit when following ClubGOWI, I’ve not ever really got into golf as a serious betting medium.  So it has been enjoyable to watch Pinpoint Golf steadily accumulate some decent profit this month.  I get the distinct feeling that golf betting can be acutely frustrating at times; near misses at huge odds, and inevitably long losing runs.  But then I’m hoping this will be countered somewhat by grabbing some pretty big and exciting returns at times too.  Bring it on.  ROI 14.62%, ROC 11.99% (2017: ROI 3.52%, ROC 4.59%).

The epitome of steadiness over the past two months has been the Morning Value LITE offering from the SBC.  This is a service that is likely to only ever really warrant comment after a particularly good winning run or a sharp, shocking losing spell, which really ought not to be the case.  There is a vital role within any betting portfolio for a service whose returns are best described as steady as opposed to spectacular.  Many have tried to run a service that fulfils such a function and failed miserably.  MVS LITE has stood the test of time, and praise to it for that.  ROI 8.7%, ROC 3.83% (2017: ROI 14.14%, ROC 11.46%).

The last service to make a profit, albeit a nominal one only this month, is Football Service 1.  February has been a particularly slow month with only 7 bets in total.  This is due mainly to the FA Cup, I think, with fixtures for the once-wonderful and now ruined knock-out competition impinging significantly on the league schedule.  I’m expecting increased action through March.  ROI 0.57%, ROC 0.08% (2017: ROI 20.17%, 7.26%).

Suffering just a tiny loss through February was Racing Service B.  Not much to write here, expect I’m still expecting the tipster to snap into some sort of sustained good form sooner rather than later.  ROI -2.59%, ROC -0.9% (2017: ROI 5.62%, ROC 4.91%).

Like Football Investor, Racing Service A has had a quiet time of it, with only 7 points staked through the month.  A. is examining ways of possibly increasing turnover in the future via his forum and I wish him well in his quest.  He is acutely aware of the difficulties for his members of securing prices and staying beyond the ever watchful gaze of the bookmakers’ overworked “Account Closure” departments when tipping into weak, early/midweek betting markets.  Although this month has proved to be a little disappointing, Cheltenham is just around the corner, and this is a track where historically he has enjoyed some spectacular successes.  ROI -35.71%, ROC -5% (2017: ROI 8.04%, ROC 2.25%).

Last month’s hero Northern Monkey was brought down to earth a little through February.  This has been partly due to ongoing attempts to secure some decent stakes rolling onto Cheltenham Festival fancies by way of multiple bets.  Like last year, Wayne now has considerable capital invested in the Festival, and I approach Cheltenham with a mixture of excitement and trepidation.  Last year, Wayne’s strategy paid off handsomely, but with 36 points of an 80 point bank already laid down with the bookies, it’s “squeaky bum” time.  Roll on next Tuesday – let the fun and games begin!  ROI -20.66%, ROC -12.56% (2017: ROI 12.22%, ROC 15.77%).

Finally this month, I have to report a bit of a shocker for Chasemaster.  Roll on March.  I’m sure things will get better for F, P, and the team!  ROI -47.41%, ROC -13.75% (2017: ROI -23.09%, ROC -12.7%).

So, figures for 2017 ytd are: ROI 10.21%, ROC 8.59%.

March, to a large extent, revolves around Cheltenham.  Let’s hope the Festival is kind to us.

Until next week…

Rowan photo

Take Your Betting Up A Notch With The Bet Diary PRO!

If you enjoy reading these free Bet Diary posts, then you can gain access to my more detailed, professional betting blog (Bet Diary Pro) as a Secret Betting Club member.

First introduced in early 2015, the Bet Diary Pro provides even more on the practical realities of following tipsters to make money betting including:

  • Exclusive extra analysis on my betting portfolio and ongoing betting journey;
  • The EXACT identities of each of the tipsters I follow to make money betting;
  • Access to all SBC reviews, ratings and recommendations for each tipster;
  • Access to several major discounts/trials on the tipsters I follow;
  • Access to the SBC Tipping Forum and several free profitable tipsters.

Access to the Bet Diary Pro is available right away with either a Silver, Gold or Platinum Secret Betting Club membership.

Subscribe Now & Gain Instant Access!

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