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To bet, or not to bet. That is the question (when the odds aren’t right).

It’s a little known fact that in Shakespeare’s Hamlet, the agonizing and moaning over suicide and the unfairness of life that began with this famous quote was misspelt by the printers.  Dopily, due to a mead or two too many over lunch, they omitted the ‘t’s, changing “To bet or not to bet” to “To be or not to be”.

You see Old Bill Shakespeare had an eye on forging a career for himself as a racing pundit and of penning a regular betting column in the weekly publication “Turf Wars”, a 16th century forerunner to the ‘Racing Post’.  Word has it he was a fearless gambler, appreciating always the need to find value, and he would spend hours deliberating whether a price being offered down the local bookies was one he should take or not.

Hamlet wasn’t the only work of Britain’s finest ever writer to reveal his love of the nags.  It was in the midst of a dreadful losing run that Wilbo was inspired to write the famous quote we see in Richard III: “A horse. A horse. My kingdom for a horse.”  You can see how desperate he was getting for a winner, and the contempt he held the beasts in that were losing him money hand over fist.  The theory is that Big Bill S was being mithered by the heavies employed by Stratford’s bookmaking fraternity who, if they’d managed to catch him, would have made pretty sure his writing days were ended, what with not having any fingers left in one piece and all.

Anyway, I did actually have a serious point to make.

Reading the excellent Making Punting Pay blog I read how the author, should he not be able to take an acceptable price on a tip, wait for the price to hopefully rebound, thus maximising his chances of tying in the value.  Now I’m certainly not going to advise against this approach and there’s a lot to be said for it.  If we’re not betting at value prices, we’re not going to make any money.

However, I do wonder if things are quite as clear cut as this.  Something A. of Racing Service 2 is regularly pointing out, is that money coming in for horses that have caught his eye as potential winners, especially when arriving closer to the off, is often highly significant.  In these circumstances I’d suggest, that even if an advised price of say 10/1 was missed, and in the pre-race market the odds continued to contract, a 5/1 or 6/1 SP might still actually hold a decent level of residual value.  Looked at from the opposite angle, if a tipster advises odds of 10/1 which you take, but the horse has drifted to 20/1 by the off, your 10/1 doesn’t look to have much value in it at all, does it?

I really don’t know what the answer to the conundrum is.  The other thought that has crossed my mind is that provided for the majority of your bets you are getting the advised prices (ie. those at which your tipster believes there to be sufficient value to merit striking a bet), actually backing the odd one that has contracted significantly (and is therefore more likely to win) will potentially smooth out the losing runs a little.

It’s a minefield, I don’t mind admitting.  I’d be interested in your thoughts.

PS. If you’re not reading the Make Punting Pay blog, you really should – it’s excellent.  He doesn’t write nonsense about gambling playwrights, either.

Portfolio performance for November to date

A word for Bet Alchemist who is almost singlehandedly trying to prevent November from being one of the worst months ever.  An amazing 33/1 winner last week – what a hero!  Nice to see Racing Service 2 knock in a 14/1 winner too.  There is cause for optimism.

Main portfolio: ROI -5.46%, ROC -1.6%.

Individual Service Performance

Bet Alchemist: Staked 16pts, +26.225pts.

Racing Service 1: Staked 18pts, -15.9pts.

Football Lay Profits: Staked 68.9pts, -4.5pts.

Football Service 1: Staked 8pts, -5.341pts

Golf Insider: Staked 13.5pts, +3.1pts.

Northern Monkey: Staked 14pts, +2.074pts.

Precision Value: Staked 58pts, +7.531pts.

Football Service 2: Staked 17pts, -3.787pts.

Racing Service 2: Staked 9.75pts, +2.625pts.

Racing Service 3: Staked 33pts, -25.2pts.




The ever-changing football betting markets – easier or harder to make a profit?

Let me put something to you.  Do you think that the increasing availability and use of statistics for top level football is making it harder to make money from football betting?

I – for my sins – support the not-so-mighty-at-present Arsenal.  I follow a few Arsenal related accounts on Twitter, and listen to two Arsenal-focused podcasts each week.  Increasingly so, much of the discussion centres around what the statistics are telling us (currently that Arsenal are undoubtedly, crap!). We have Expected Goals (xG), Expected Goals Against (xGA), Expected Goal Difference and points approximations, number of successful passes into the penalty box/final third, interceptions, pass success rate, etc. etc.  You get the gist.

Now either all this readily available and free to access information you might think, could well give the punter a potential edge.  If you’re prepared to put the graft in to read and interpret the stats, perhaps angles can be found, edges created.  Or…

Are the trading teams at the bookies now using all this info to price up matches more accurately and efficiently.  Is it becoming harder than ever to make ongoing profit from betting on top tier football?

I honestly can’t decide which way it’s going.

This has to be a consideration moving forward though.  It’s coming to the time of year when I like to sit down and think about the services to follow moving forward into the new year.  Don’t get me wrong, I’m not suggesting we should all give up on betting on footie, far from it.  I can’t help thinking that for the bettor who specializes and becomes an expert on a particular footballing niche, whether that be lower/non-league football or whatever, the future remains bright.  But I do think it’s a question worth asking, and I’d love your thoughts…

Talking about thoughts and Comments on the Bet Diary, I was asked if I was going to replace the Morning Value Service with the new Precision Value offering.  The answer is that yes, I am (have).  And for simplicity, I’ll be backing the tips at all prices, not just those at up to 3/1 which the old service provided.

Despite a good start from Precision Value, the month as a whole has got off to a bit of a shocker.

Portfolio performance for November to date

Main portfolio: ROI -17.39%, ROC -3.13%.

‘Broxchange’ portfolio (Football Lay Profits, Football Service 1, Golf Insider): ROI -23.45%, ROC -5.07%

Individual Service Performance

Bet Alchemist: Staked 7pts, +4.1pts.

Racing Service 1: Staked 4pts, -1.9pts.

Football Lay Profits: Staked 68.9pts, -4.5pts.

Football Service 1: Staked 8pts, -5.341pts

Golf Insider: Staked 6pts, +3pts.

Northern Monkey: Staked 6.5pts, +2pts.

Precision Value: Staked 27pts, +4.582pts.

Football Service 2: Staked 12pts, -1.927pts.

Racing Service 2: Staked 3.5pts, -3.5pts.

Racing Service 3: Staked 15.5pts, -10.1pts.

October review – a month as bad as the weather.

Is it ever going to stop raining?  Seriously, it’s bloomin’ wet, and has been for what seems like forever and a day.  Has the weather made it harder for tipsters through October?  It can’t make form reading any easier if there are on-going uncertainties over the ground conditions, but that shouldn’t effect the footballers, should it!?

October was not good.  I guess I was due a bad month, and October served one up for me.  Oh well, it had to happen at some point.

Of the nine services in action, only four ended in profit but the story really is that of those four only Racing Service 3 performed strongly.  On the other side of the coin, Football Service 2 had a dreadful time of it, Racing Service 1 not much better, and Golf Insider failed to produce a positive return from any pick.

Now as you know, I was away on holiday for the last third of the month and there’s no way I’m going to waste time going back to see “what I could have won”, as the late, great Jim Bowen might have said (host of gameshow Bullseye, for those of you not old enough to remember ’80s and ’90s television).  So I’m conscious that one or two of the services that ‘disgraced’ themselves in October may in fact have banged in winner after winner that I’ve subsequently missed.  If they did, please don’t tell me, eh?

It’s getting to that time of year that I’ll be reflecting and looking to see what services I might change for 2020.  I’m aware too that I’ve still to round up thoughts on knowing when to drop a service, so we’ll resume that particular thread next week.

Until then…

‘Main’ portfolio: ROI -11.85%, ROC -5.92%.

‘Broxchange’ portfolio (Football Lay Profits, Football Service 1, Golf Insider): ROI -6.25%, ROC -3.18%

Individual Service Performance

Bet Alchemist: Staked 25pts, +4pts, ROI 16%, ROC 4%.

Racing Service 1: Staked 32pts, -23pts, ROI -71.87%, ROC -11.5%

Football Lay Profits: Staked 143.8pts, +4.83pts, ROI 3.35%, ROC 2.41%

Football Service 1: Staked 20pts, +0.097pts, ROI 0.48%, ROC 0.19%.

Golf Insider: Staked 41pts, -41pts, ROI -100%, ROC -10.25%.

MVS: Staked 44pts, -5.875pts, ROI -13.35%, ROC -5.87%.

Northern Monkey: Staked 52pts, -9.267pts, ROI -17.82%, ROC -10.29%.

Football Service 2: Staked 25.95pts, -9.981pts, ROI -38.46%, ROC -24.95%.

Racing Service 2: n/a

Racing Service 3: Staked 48pts, +16.737pts, ROI 34.86%, ROC 11.95%.

How a struggling tipster is like a football manager facing the sack.

Well the back is better at least.  A heady mix of anti-inflammatories and some pretty hefty, prescription strength pain killers did the trick.  I should have put some of the latter to one side, ready to use them to dull the pain next time a horrific day hits.  You live and learn.

So, in this post I want to continue the theme of dropping tipsters.  We’ve already seen that we can apply some cold hard maths to the subject, comparing Betfair SP and/or Pinnacle closing prices to the advised prices to see if there is a suggestion of an eroding edge at play, or simply a bit of bad luck and variance.

One thing I personally take into account when deliberating over this issue is whether there is some change in strategy being employed by a tipster who is going through the mill a bit.  I liken it to a football manager who plays a certain formation for weeks on end, say 4-3-3, and with some success.  However, he starts to make some strange selection decisions, injuries hit, a bit of bad luck and before you know it that manager is coming under real pressure – the fans want him out and the Chairman has done that most dastardly of footballing deeds and given a public vote of confidence.  The pressure gets to the manager who starts changing his system, playing three at the back perhaps, when he would never have done so in calmer times.  Of course, results very rarely pick up as by the time it gets to this stage the rot has set in and the inevitable sacking is merely around the corner – as far as this particular Club is concerned, the manager is done.

So it is with a struggling tipster.  The pressure can begin to take a grip.  Selection strategies change – perhaps a lot more bets all of a sudden, or maybe going the other way and issuing far fewer picks than normal.  Perhaps whereas the norm for a racing tipster is to back win only, they start throwing in a lot more each way selections.  These and other things are tell tale signs that the pressure is perhaps becoming a little too much.  And let’s face it, a commercial tipster on a long losing run has got to be feeling it, right?

This is why the SBC quite rightly place so much emphasis on tipster longevity.  They need to see evidence of someone coming through a deep drawdown the other side, strategies in tact and the wiser for the experience,

What we mustn’t do is confuse the above with a tipster who adapts and tinkers slightly with their approach to adapt to changing market or even sporting conditions.  Football Service 2 is a good example of a service which tells their member that they have noticed a change in an underlying factor that is having an impact on their betting.  This process of renewal and adaptation is essential for a tipster to ensure they stay ahead of the markets.

Being able to differentiate between the two – a tipster panicking and radically and fundamentally altering their approach in response, and another keeping ahead of the market – is an important skill to acquire, and one which will stand your own betting in good stead if you can master it.

No post next week as I’m off on my holibobs during half term.  Back the week after.

Portfolio performance for October to date

Main portfolio: ROI -10.96%, ROC -5.21%.

‘Broxchange’ portfolio (Football Lay Profits, Football Service 1, Golf Insider): ROI -1.19%, ROC -0.57%

Individual Service Performance

Bet Alchemist: Staked 25pts, +4pts.

Racing Service 1: Staked 32pts, -23pts.

Football Lay Profits: Staked 139.3pts, +9.33pts.

Football Service 1: Staked 18pts, +2.097pts

Golf Insider: Staked 41pts, -41pts.

MVS: Staked 41pts, -6.625pts.

Northern Monkey: Staked 49.25pts, -10.079pts.

Football Service 2: Staked 24.95pts, -11.001pts.

Racing Service 2: n/a

Racing Service 3: Staked 44pts, +20.737pts.

How to use odds movements to judge a tipster

I’m in absolute bloomin’ agony.  And getting old.  Sadly, the two are, according to my doctor, inextricably linked.

So I wake up on Tuesday morning with a bit of a niggle in my back.  Nothing too bad, just a bit of an ache.  By lunchtime I’m in real pain and struggling to sit, and by teatime I can hardly walk.  Somehow the good lady wife gets me in the car and to the Quacks.  The diagnosis?  A “muscle spasm”.

It’s not even something serious, is it?  A bit pathetic really – an intense form of cramp and I get that all the time in the old calves when I play 5-a-side each week.  Anyway, some prescription strength pain killers and anti-inflammatories and I’m on the road to recovery.  The bigger scar is a mental one. “How did this happen?”, I asked the doctor (who, in her 20s, is about 20 years younger than me).  She looked at me with something bordering on patronizing pity, before dismissing it as “something that happens quite easily as you get older”.  At that point I’m not sure what hurt more – my back or my pride.

Last week I asked for some interaction – and boy did I get it.  Just the one comment (come on, the rest of you!), bu a bloomin’ good one.  So good in fact, that in can make up the bulk of this week’s post.

It came from Ian, and here it is…

HI Rowan – I think this is one of the trickiest issues. No one wants to give up on a tipster only to find out they posted record profits a week later. On the other hand I’ve definitely held on to some previous good performers too long and suffered.

One thing I try to do nowadays is benchmark the tipster’s performance in terms of their advised prices (and the prices I can get on at) vs closing prices.

The idea here is that “money talks” and that on average, closing prices with the sharper bookmakers or most liquid exchanges (pinnacle, betfair exchange) are a good approximation of the true odds of the selection.

So in other words, if you can get on at significantly higher odds than the selection closes at (enough to beat the bookmaker’s margin or Betfair commission) you should win in the long run (and any losses you see in the short run are bad luck/variation).

And conversely, if you bet on something and the odds drift so it closes higher than the odds you got, the chances are you’ll be a loser in the long run and any profits you’re seeing are primarily down to luck.

Not everyone believes in that theory, but in any case, I think it’s a very healthy sign if the odds of a tipster you follow consistently beat pinnacle or betfair closing prices. And it’s a sign to be wary if they don’t.

As an example, Football Lay Profits is on a bit of an awful run right now so I checked their stats. Historically they bet betfair closing odds by 5%. Not enough to make a profit if you’re paying 5% commission, but a decent edge if you’re paying 2%.

However, in the July/August period this year before the season got started proper, they were advising at odds that were 2% worse than closing odds. Not a good sign and caused me to think something had changed in their algorithm or the market in general that would mean I might need to drop them. However, from September onwards their advised prices have been back to over 5% better than closing odds which again should be profitable in the long run.

I’m not saying this is a universal solution, but if a tipster is going on a bad run it’s worth doing the work to check their advised prices vs closing odds (I use oddsportal to check). It takes out the randomness of wins and losses and just focuses on odds movement so you can judge performance earlier.

And conversely, if a tipster is doing well but not beating closing prices, it’s as well not to go too overboard.

Hope that helps.

It does, Ian, it does – and thank you so much for posting.

Ian has articulated this point so well, I know I can’t put the points across any better, hence why I’ve simply reproduced his ‘Comment’ here.  And there is some really sound advice – when making the decision as to whether or not to drop a particular tipster, we need to do some detective work to see if there is any actual evidence that he is losing his edge, or indeed had one in the first place.  The method of comparing advised prices (and secured prices) to closing odds is pretty basic, but to my mind, sound.  Sure, it requires a wee bit of effort, but surely it’s worth it when conducting an exercise like this can literally save us thousands of pounds.

Next week we’ll look at detecting changes in approach or strategy by the tipster, and whether any tweaks made are a tipster unsure of his approach, or making changes to adapt to changing market conditions.

Again, any comments welcome in the meantime.

Portfolio performance for October to date

Main’ portfolio: ROI -15.59%, ROC -4.77%.

(The October losses mount up!)

‘Broxchange’ portfolio (Football Lay Profits, Football Service 1, Golf Insider): ROI -16.53%, ROC -5.87%

Individual Service Performance

Bet Alchemist: Staked 18pts, -8.25pts.

Racing Service 1: Staked 20pts, -20pts.

Football Lay Profits: Staked 62.8pts, -0.41pts.

Football Service 1: Staked 9pts, -1.112pts

Golf Insider: Staked 27.5pts, -27.5pts.

MVS: Staked 21pts, -3.25pts.

Northern Monkey: Staked 39pts, -0.204pts.

Football Service 2: Staked 20.95pts, -7.921pts.

Racing Service 2: n/a

Racing Service 3: Staked 31.5pts, +21.937pts.

Drawing a line – when to give up on a tipster (Part 1)

We all know by now don’t we, that profitable betting means focusing on the long term.  It’s drummed into us SBC members right from joining up, and quite rightly so.  We have evidence from the SBC’s tipster monitoring that even the very best services on the market have losing runs.  Drawdowns simply cannot be avoided and anyone who tells you otherwise is a liar.

On the one hand we have the experts telling us that we simply must focus on the long term if we want to have any chance of betting success, but our own inner demons – the voices in our head – are screaming at us to drop an underperforming tipster quicker than Rebekah Vardy can scribble out Colleen Rooney’s name from her Halloween Party guest list.

So what do we do when it’s time to make a decision as to whether we should drop an underperforming tipster or group of tipsters (what is the collective pronoun for tipsters?  A shackle?) a shackle of tipsters?  How can we make a decision based on logic and sound thinking rather than one that is made too hastily and which is influenced by raw emotions brought about by losing money?

I’m afraid to say that there is no simple answer.  There’s no magic formulae or ‘golden rule’.  The decision-making process becomes easier with experience and I have to say that often the most reliable influence comes from what I can only call gut instinct, which isn’t very helpful I know.

Having said that, there are certain things you can do and watch out for that set you up to being capable of making your decisions based on the right reasons.  And that is all you can really ask of yourself.  It will mean that you make more correct decisions about your betting than you do wrong ones and ultimately that will help you be profitable and not loss-making.

I’ll spend the next few weeks chatting about various factors and try to give you examples of where I have learnt from my own experiences, including outlining some of the mistakes I’ve made over the years, dropping a tipster just before they’ve posted record profits and following others over a cliff with the inevitable consequences.

It would be great to make this interactive, so please do ask questions and post your own experiences in the ‘Comments’ section.  Having a good idea as to when to drop a tipster is a skill we can all benefit from acquiring or improving, so let’s do that together.  If you’re reading the non-members version of the ‘Bet Diary’, join up and contribute to the discussion.  It can only benefit us all.

Right then.  Looking forward to getting stuck into this.  See you next week, and in the meantime, good luck in the ever raging war against the bookies.

Portfolio performance for October to date

Main’ portfolio: ROI -17.33%, ROC -2.89%.

(-17.33% ROI!?! – sack it!  Drop ’em all!)

‘Broxchange’ portfolio (Football Lay Profits, Football Service 1, Golf Insider): ROI 6.45%, ROC 0.96%

(6.45% ROI? – apart from these ones)

Individual Service Performance

Bet Alchemist: Staked 6pts, -6pts.

Racing Service 1: Staked 12pts, -12pts.

Football Lay Profits: Staked 41pts, +3.83pts.

Football Service 1: Staked 2pts, +1.887pts

Golf Insider: Staked 13.5pts, -13.5pts.

MVS: Staked 11pts, -0.75pts.

Northern Monkey: Staked 20.25pts, +4.537pts.

Football Service 2: Staked 13.15pts, -4.571pts.

Racing Service 2: n/a

Racing Service 3: Staked 11pts, -4.1pts.

September Review

Another solid enough month in all.  Of the ten services providing advice in September, seven ended the month in profit.  An overall ROC of 5.76% is perfectly acceptable (I’d take that every month!) and the ROI of 7.43% is decent enough.

Star of the show has undoubtedly been Football Service 2 which weighed in with a superb individual ROC of over 33%.  I must admit I was just a touch anxious when July and August proved underwhelming as traditionally these have been lucrative times for this long-termer, but as form has started to settle then the edge has started to show through.  Interestingly it was only a few short weeks ago that FS2 sent out an email saying that changing conditions within the game meant he was going to be a little cautious, take stock and look to adapt.  Figures this month strongly suggest that that process has been successfully executed.  Therein lies the advantage of following tipsters who’ve stood the test of time and who know their market and their own strategies inside out and back to front.

After expressing serious concerns over the performance of Racing Service 3 a little while ago, a really strong week has resulted in what has ultimately proven to be a strong month.  Like I previously said, this perhaps eases the pressure a little, but there is still a lot of work to do.  What we need to see now is some real consistency.

September’s performance from Golf Insider was a microcosm of what following a golf tipster is all about.  Not so much as a penny of a return to be seen all month, and then wham!  A winner and a placed selection – both at odds in excess of 100/1 – over the last weekend, and the losses are eradicated and an excellent profit banked.

It was nice too to see MVS (tips priced between 7/4 and 3/1) enjoy a good month.

On the other side then I’m afraid Football Lay Profits has suffered something of a shocker.  A downturn of 21% of the bank, whilst obviously not great to see in a month, isn’t in itself a cause of too much concern.  We’re talking only a fifth of the bank so it’s hardly panic stations.  The frustration lies more in the fact that it feels like getting those losses back could very easily take a lot of time and in the first month of the new season, there is real pressure to make a profit by the end of it next spring.  I’ve seen the service embark upon long winning runs in the past – it really needs to repeat that trick and very quickly.

‘Main’ portfolio: ROI 7.43%, ROC 5.76%.

‘Broxchange’ portfolio (Football Lay Profits, Football Service 1, Golf Insider): ROI -5.27%, ROC -4.35%

Individual Service Performance

Bet Alchemist: Staked 29pts, -9.387pts, ROI -32.37%, ROC -9.38%.

Racing Service 1: Staked 58pts, +3.425pts, ROI 5.9%, ROC 1.71%

Football Lay Profits: Staked 278.35pts, -41.98pts, ROI -15.08%, ROC -20.99%

Football Service 1: Staked 22pts, -0.718pts, ROI -3.26%, ROC -1.43%.

Golf Insider: Staked 59.5pts, +47.9pts, ROI 80.5%, ROC 11.97%.

MVS (7/4 – 3/1): Staked 64pts, +10.375pts, ROI 16.21%, ROC 11.52%.

Northern Monkey: Staked 53.875pts, +2.689pts, ROI 4.99%, ROC 3.36%.

Football Service 2: Staked 44.14pts, +13.448pts, ROI 30.46%, ROC 33.62%.

Racing Service 2: n/a

Racing Service 3: Staked 98.5pts, +17.225pts, ROI 17.48%, ROC 12.3%.

Hitting back! Tipster starts recovery with a bang.

Last week I wrote that Racing Service 3 was coming under some significant pressure as a result of ongoing underperformance.  Well, if he was feeling things a bit, RS3 responded magnificently last week and by doing so showed us just how quickly fortunes can change.

Now I’m not for one moment saying that one good week means that all is well.  What we need to see from RS3 and from other tipsters who will undoubtedly find themselves in a similarly tricky situation at some point, is sustained improvement over weeks and then months.  But there needs to be a start, and RS3 gave us a heck of a good one with a 12/1 winner on the Tuesday, and 14/1 and 6/1 winners on the Saturday.

We now need Football Lay Profits to do the same, as another losing weekend has extended the poor run.

It wasn’t too long ago that Football Service 2 was going through the doldrums somewhat too, but this month has seen a strong recovery and the service is quite comfortably the outstanding performer for September to date.

I’m not going to preach about the importance of patience in your betting.  I’ve done that often enough in the past and I’m guessing if you’re reading this you’re pretty serious about your gambling and already know how necessary it is at times to delay pulling the trigger on a service you’re following.  Having said that, it would be extremely naive to follow someone over the edge of a cliff (and believe me I’ve done that a few times), but you do need a good reason for stopping and drawing a line with a proven service.

Next week I’ll do a review of September, and after that I’ll write a couple of posts on what to look out for with a service, warning signs that might be worth paying heed to.

Main’ portfolio: ROI 4.74%, ROC 2.66%.

‘Broxchange’ portfolio (Football Lay Profits, Football Service 1, Golf Insider): ROI -15.34%, ROC -7.97%

Individual Service Performance

Bet Alchemist: Staked 23pts, -7.7pts.

Racing Service 1: Staked 46pts, -1.823pts.

Football Lay Profits: Staked 169.1pts, -24.17pts.

Football Service 1: Staked 14pts, +2.54pts

Golf Insider: Staked 48.5pts, -48.5pts.

MVS: Staked 46pts, +2.625pts.

Northern Monkey: Staked 43.125pts, +3.365pts.

Football Service 2: Staked 32.9pts, +8.742pts.

Racing Service 2: n/a

Racing Service 3: Staked 83.25pts, +25.475pts.

Tipsters under pressure.

It was a pretty poor week all round last week, but two tipsters have put themselves under some fairly severe pressure through continuing underperformance.

I’m rooting for him, but if you have read the SBC’s latest Tipster Profit Report, you will know that Racing Service 3 has been in the doldrums for a little while.  His place in the Hall of Fame is looking less secure and he needs to show signs of an improvement in his form sooner rather than later.  He has been through tough spells before of course, and it has been his ability to remain focused when under pressure that has seen him recover from them before pushing ahead again.  I’ve a feeling that crunch time has arrived however.  It hadn’t been a bad week for RS3 until an exceptionally busy Saturday saw a lot of bets and only one winner, the outcome being a pretty poor day.

The other service to suffer recently has been Football Lay Profits.  Last Sunday was another particularly poor day; not the first in recent times.  The result is a large deficit and already there has to be question marks over whether or not this season can turn a profit or not.  It can.  Of course it can.  But we need to see a return to the consistency for which this service has been known in the past.  To be over 23 points down already for September, having ended August in excess of 10 points down is a loss of form that I don’t remember seeing from FLP in the past.  That may be my poor memory at play, and let’s retain some sense of perspective.  We have a 200 point bank set up, so a c.30-35 point drawdown isn’t setting off panic alarms, but nonetheless we could do with seeing a reversal in fortune if only to restore confidence.

This is not the time to panic.  I’m confident that neither RS3 nor FLP are doing so.  So let’s buckle up and brace ourselves…and hope that the good times return quickly for these two tipsters under pressure.

Main’ portfolio: ROI -4.17%, ROC -1.56%.

‘Broxchange’ portfolio (Football Lay Profits, Football Service 1, Golf Insider): ROI -19.4%, ROC -7.05%

Individual Service Performance

Bet Alchemist: Staked 17pts, -4.95pts.

Racing Service 1: Staked 32pts, -5.325pts.

Football Lay Profits: Staked 126.8pts, -23.71pts.

Football Service 1: Staked 8pts, +1.399pts

Golf Insider: Staked 31.5pts, -31.5pts.

MVS: Staked 30pts, +1.125pts.

Northern Monkey: Staked 26pts, +4.937pts.

Football Service 2: Staked 16.9pts, +3.836pts.

Racing Service 2: n/a

Racing Service 3: Staked 68.25pts, -3.175pts.

Tipsters – a breed of Superhumans?

I don’t think he’ll mind my saying so but Wayne of Northern Monkey was recently married.  He took a few days off by way of a honeymoon.  How dare he – I expect my tipsters to be working all day, every day in the pursuit of profit!

I jest, of course.  But there is a serious point to be made around just how hard the best tipsters work for their members.

How often have you, in your working life, really felt that you need a break, to go away for a few days and completely switch off from the day to day stress of your job?  There can’t be many, if any, who don’t feel like that at least a couple of times every year.  And yet the tipsters I follow appear to be complete workaholics.  Most of them I believe, have jobs outside of betting, and will no doubt have to cope with the pressures of work on top of the pressure they come under from running a tipping service.  To me, that sounds like a lot to handle, and yet rarely do they seem to go on holiday or take a break.

I’ve long felt that there’s a tendency by some to simply assume that tipsters live in some kind of tipping bubble, unaffected by outside factors such as work, having kids, or even something as small as suffering from a cold.  I know what it feels like to struggle out of bed in the morning, nose streaming and throat raw, feeling awful but knowing you have to get to work.  And then after a long and exhausting day, still feeling like death warmed up, collapsing into bed with a lemsip.  Imagine doing all that, but before the lemsip bit, having do all that you need to do to run your service – finding the bets, dealing with emails, all the admin stuff.

My view is that the tipsters I follow go to superhuman lengths to provide their members with a profit.  They must do.  We never hear them complain, but that doesn’t mean they’re not experiencing what the rest of us go through in day to day life, which of course they do.  To my mind, those that run their services professionally and with care, are to be congratulated for the effort they put into doing so.

Portfolio performance for September to date:

A solid if unspectacular start to the month.  It was good to see the return to action of Football Service 1, although the timing of the season’s first break in domestic football for the interminably dull international break stymied somewhat the number of bets.  Only three, but all three won so a great start.  The aforementioned Northern Monkey returned too, celebrating the recent nuptials by knocking in a couple of decent winners, including a winning double.  Good to see Football Service 2 having some success, perhaps reward for taking stock after a recent poor spell and being a little more selective in his approach.

‘Main’ portfolio: ROI 5.05%, ROC 0.94%.

‘Broxchange’ portfolio (Football Lay Profits, Football Service 1, Golf Insider): ROI -1.5%, ROC -0.22%

Individual Service Performance

Bet Alchemist: Staked 6pts, -1.285pts.

Racing Service 1: Staked 14pts, -1.25pts.

Football Lay Profits: Staked 46.7pts, -7.6pts.

Football Service 1: Staked 3pts, +4.189pts

Golf Insider: Staked 20.5pts, -20.5pts.

MVS: Staked 20pts, -3.625pts.

Northern Monkey: Staked 12.5pts, +8.318pts.

Football Service 2: Staked 7.4pts, +2.006pts.

Racing Service 2: n/a

Racing Service 3: Staked 23.75pts, +0.125pts.