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Two more services – the 2020 portfolio is good to go!

I’ve spent the last seven days (not every minute of them, you understand) thinking about adding a couple more services to the six I detailed in last week’s post.  Six didn’t quite feel enough, which is really weird when I think back to my early days of betting and following only two or three.  To many – and quite rightly – following six services would feel like a heck of a task, but when you’re used to following more it felt strange and almost as if down to the bones.

The problem I’ve had though, is that I’ve been trying to strike a very delicate balance between following services and yet freeing up more time for other stuff, you know, like living and that.  I know 2020 is going to be a stupendously busy year with all sorts of things going on and it struck me that I needed to free up some time.  The way I’ve sought to do this is by concentrating predominantly on services that involve a relatively low workload.  Indeed, of the eight now making up this year’s portfolio, only two regularly tip every day (Precision Value and Racing Intelligence), and one of those doesn’t always offer selections every day (Racing Intelligence).

Of the other racing tipsters, three of them concentrate only on the better class of race at the bigger meetings and so are predominantly weekend focused.  This is going to suit me perfectly, and of course has the added benefit of being more bookie-friendly.  Mind you, Cheltenham week’s gonna be a busy one!

So, the two additions.

First is another golf service, the currently free-to-view, SBC-available PGA Profit.  It was actually recommended to me and I like the cut of it’s jib.  More of a gamble in that it is relatively unproven, but going with gut instinct on this one.  Should hopefully still fit the criteria I set out last week in terms of giving an ROI of 12-15% minimum over time, and I’ve been assured that it’s easy to get value on the exchanges which is a bonus.

And the second – and filling a football-shaped hole – is the SBC Premium service, Scottish Football Income Booster.  Now I’m not suddenly going back on my stated reservations last week about how the footie markets seem to me at least, to be growing more and more efficient.  I still think that eking out a good level of profit in football betting is becoming harder and harder, and I’m seeing this as a bit of a last roll of the dice when it comes to betting on the (occasionally) beautiful game.  Again, a recommendation has impressed upon me that a double-digit ROI has been produced consistently, so I’m going to give it to the end of the 2020/21 season to see what can be done.  Again though, relatively low weekly workload.

I’ll be backing the PGA Profit and SFIB picks from this week – shame I missed last week as I believe both came up trumps, but there we go.  Can’t do much about that now.

Performance for January to date.

Despite the best of planning and intentions, 2020 continues to get off to a sticky start.

Bet Alchemist had a winner on Saturday but not a big enough one to produce a significant profit overall and the same can be said of Racing Service 1.  Racing Service 2 had a blank Saturday too, although A.’s frustration was evident as things really didn’t fall his way.  He went as far as to say it was one of the most frustrating afternoons of his tipping career, and I feel his pain.

Lovely start for Golf Insider who came up with goods and a 12/1 winner in the first week of the year’s betting, which is  the one really bright spot across the portfolio so far.  Having said that, Precision Value is performing solidly enough and is ticking over nicely.

Bet Alchemist (100pts bank): Staked 14pts, -3.1pts, roi -22.14%, roc -3.1%

 Racing Service 1 (200): Staked 19pts, -10pts, roi -52.63%, roc -5%

Golf Insider (400): Staked 23.5pts, +14.5pts, roi 61.7%, roc 3.63%

PGA Profit (100): n/a

Precision Value (200): Staked 39pts, +4.125pts, roi 10.57%, roc 2.06%

Racing Intelligence (200): Staked 40.5pts, -9.325pts, roi -23.02%, roc -4.66%

Scottish Football Income Booster (100): n/a

Racing Service 2 (50): Staked 4.5pts, -4.5pts, roi -100%, roc -9%

Total ROI -20.86%, ROC -2.51%

New year, new portfolio

Happy New Year!

Is it me, or does Christmas and New Year feel like a million years ago?  Now it’s just the dull, grey grind of winter.  Cold, wet, miserable.  I shall stop.  I’m in danger of talking us all into depression.  Let’s focus instead on the fact that Cheltenham is only a few weeks away, and by that time the daffodils will be out and that long, hot summer we’re bound to have (ha!) will be only a few short weeks later.

I’ve changed the make-up of the portfolio being followed by the Bet Diary.  I’m not saying that anyone should drop services that I may have been writing about last year but not this.  Remember, the Bet Diary is merely to show examples of services and how they might knit together.  This year, I’m going to see if we can raise the ROI to approach if not hit the 12-15% mark, whilst using fewer services.

In order to do this, I’ve tried to concentrate on services with an historically high ROI record.  One by-product of this is that there’s no football service in there.  I’ve a sneaky suspicion that the football markets are becoming increasingly efficient and eking out an ROI of 5% is a very real achievement nowadays.  That’s great, and there is very much a place for that in people’s portfolios, but not in this one this year.

Of the previously followed services, Bet Alchemist, Racing Service 1, Golf Insider, Precision Value, and Racing Service 2 all retain their places.  To this roster is added the SBC’s own Racing Intelligence service.  And that’s it.  Like I say, I’m seeing if we can raise ROI whilst lowering workload.  Time will tell and we’ll assess progress each week.

Portfolio performance for January to date

Well, things haven’t exactly got off to a flyer.  In fact, it’s been a poor start to 2020, but what I would say is that a smaller portfolio, and one with fewer bets too, is always going to be open and vulnerable to larger fluctuations.  More feast, more famine.  It’s inevitable.

No individual service is suffering from a disaster, but only one of the six is currently in profit – Precision Value – and that to an ROI of a measly 0.06%!  We’re yet to have a decent winner, and with Golf Insider yet to have a bet and Racing Service 2 taking last weekend off to recharge after a heavy workload festive period, it’s not been a busy time.

Bet Alchemist (Bank: 100pts) Staked 9pts, -2.7pts, roi -30%, roc -2.7%

 Racing Service 1 (200): Staked 12pts, -9pts, roi -75%, roc -4.5%

Golf Insider (500):

Precision Value (200): Staked 24pts, +0.125pts, roi 0.63%, roc 0.06%

Racing Intelligence (200): Staked 14pts, -0.55pts, roi -3.92%, roc -0.275%

Racing Service 2 (50): Staked 2pts, -2pts, roi -100%, roc -4%

Total ROI -30%, ROC -2.375%

Wishing you a fantastic punting Christmas!

So here’s the question.  Which is better – Christmas Day or Boxing Day?

As a bettor, it’s got to be Boxing Day, surely?  Don’t get me wrong, I do love a Christmas Day.  Our family is weird in that we have our Christmas dinner on Christmas Eve, so there’s no dinner to cook. We tend to rise fairly early – although not at the sadistic hour we used to get up when the kids were younger! – have a cooked breakfast, a walk along the beach and then home to open some pressies.  A decent old film in the afternoon or a snooze followed by a laugh at Eric Morecambe in an endlessly repeated Morecambe and Wise Christmas Special….what’s not to like?

But Boxing Day.  Now that’s different gravy.  A copy of the Racing Post, a scan of the cards and a beer before the action kicks off at Kempton.  The build up to the King George to enjoy, Racing Service 2 bets to place and write-up to read, and all the while we’ve got the festive footie starting.  And if all that wasn’t enough, this year we have the first day of the Boxing Day Test Match in South Africa to watch.  I suppose family will fit around it all somehow, but bearing in mind there’s only the four of us in a South Devon cottage miles from anyone else who isn’t in the local pub, there’s no stress.  Kids’ll probably be on their screens anyway!

Nope, there’s only one winner for me (probably similar on the Boxing Day racing, knowing my luck) – Christmas Day is great, but it’s better when the sport’s on the day after.

As this is the last Bet Diary post of the year, may I take this opportunity to say thanks for reading, and make sure you enjoy the holiday period.  Eat well, drink well, be well.  I’ll see you on the other side.

Portfolio performance for December to date

Main portfolio: ROI 47.76%, ROC 10.19%.

Individual Service Performance

Bet Alchemist: Staked 11pts, +16.725pts.

Racing Service 1: Staked 13pt, -7.5pts.

Football Service 1: Staked 13pts, +0.164pts

Golf Insider: Staked 17.5pts, +103.5pts.

Northern Monkey: Staked 14pts, +4.113pts.

Precision Value: Staked 41pts, +9pts.

Football Service 2: Staked 12pts, +3.59pts.

Racing Service 2: Staked 5pts, 6.95pts.

Racing Service 3: Staked 18.5pts, +2.3pts.

Thoughts and plans on how to grow profit in 2020 (Plus a 200/1 Winner!)

2020.  Blimey.  I don’t know about you, but when I was a kid 2020 had a very, very futuristic sound to it.  2020 was going to be the time when we’d be flying about in hover cars, transporting us from A to B at ridiculously high speeds.  There were the completely unrealistic predictions too, back in the 80s when I was just a nipper, about how by 2020 we’d have trains that ran on time, main roads that wouldn’t be closed off with the first flurries of snow each winter, and a national television broadcaster that wouldn’t show repeats on Christmas Day.  Pfft.  As if?!?

But 2020 is nearly upon us and I must confess that my thoughts have been turning to how to increase betting profits next year.  The broad conclusions I’ve reached are that I’m going to run a streamlined portfolio made up of services that historically at least, have generated higher levels of ROI.  In other words, I want to cut down on my workload and get more bang for my betting buck.

To that end I’ve already decided that I would copy the Making Punting Pay blogger when it comes to following Northern Monkey and go win only on his advice.  I like the approach and I know it’s something that Wayne himself has mulled over in the past before opting to stick with tipping each way in order to make the betting paths as smooth as possible for his followers.  I can’t help feeling I’m an experienced enough bettor now though to be able to put up with the deeper drawdowns and longer losing runs as a sacrifice for potentially better returns, especially if set up properly in terms of betting bank.  This is in fact a change I’ve already implemented for this month’s betting.

I am wondering long and hard about sports betting.  Golf, if got right (and my word didn’t Golf Insider get it right last week with a 200/1 winner!?!) will always produce a high ROI provided the tipster has a genuine edge.  As for football, I just don’t know.  I just have a nagging feeling that the markets are becoming more and more efficient.  One still to ponder.

Pleased I didn’t miss that Golf Insider winner.  Don’t know what I missed on Saturday – a traditional pre-Christmas family get together meant I didn’t bother trying to place any bets at all.  Some things are more important, especially at this time of year.

Portfolio performance for December to date

Main portfolio: ROI 53.42%, ROC 5.75%.

Individual Service Performance

Bet Alchemist: Staked 4pts, 0pts.

Racing Service 1: Staked 1pt, -1pt.

Football Service 1: Staked 5pts, -0.07pts

Golf Insider: Staked 17.5pts, +103.5pts.

Northern Monkey: Staked 11.25pts, +1.426pts.

Precision Value: Staked 23pts, +4.5pts.

Football Service 2: Staked 8pts, +2.676pts.

Racing Service 2: Staked 0pts, 0pts.

Racing Service 3: Staked 8.5pts, +8.55pts.

November Review – when not losing feels like you’re winning.

The last couple of months have been tough going indeed.  October was a poor month and there have been times when it’s felt that November was going the same way.  I can’t say that the consistently wet weather we’ve seen these past few weeks are affecting things too much when the poorest performing services have included all three footie tipsters in the portfolio.  I guess there are times when you have to concede that there’s no rhyme nor reason to what happens and that these ups and downs we experience are simply a natural part of betting.

I’ve seen plenty of these hard times before, of course.  Experience teaches you that if you can remain focused, calm and accepting of what the punting Gods are throwing at you, you come out the other side and successfully forge into profit again.  These are the times of course when your bank management and set up is stress tested, as is your mentality.

All of this sounds like November has been a disaster.  It hasn’t been – it’s ended in a profit, albeit a very small one.  But there are times when not losing money is a big win, and this feels like one of those times.

Hats off to Bet Alchemist this month, which has performed quite superbly.  Great to see the return of Racing Service 2 who has picked up this season as if never having been away, and an impressive first month for Precision Value.

That the month ended only just in the black after the above mentioned services all performed admirably, tells you that there was some pretty shocking performances elsewhere…

‘Main’ portfolio: ROI 1.89%, ROC 1.07%.

Individual Service Performance

Bet Alchemist: Staked 32pts, +30.45pts, ROI 95.15%, ROC 30.45%.

Racing Service 1: Staked 43pts, -6.9pts, ROI -16.04%, ROC -3.45%

Football Lay Profits: Staked 68.9pts, -4.5pts, ROI -6.53%, ROC -2.25%

Football Service 1: Staked 24pts, -3.798pts, ROI -15.82%, ROC -7.59%.

Golf Insider: Staked 29.5pts, +4.045pts, ROI 13.71%, ROC 1.01%.

Northern Monkey: Staked 33pts, -8.831pts, ROI -26.76%, ROC -8.83%.

Precision Value: Staked 111pts, +26.781pts, ROI 24.12%, ROC 16.73%.

Football Service 2: Staked 35.5pts, -5.41pts, ROI -15.23%, ROC -13.52%.

Racing Service 2: Staked 20.25pts, +7.125pts, ROI 35.18%, ROC 10.68%.

Racing Service 3: Staked 59.5pts, -20.7pts, ROI -34.78%, ROC -16.73%.

Stick or twist with a tipster reviewing their methods?

Those of you who follow the Bet Diary closely will be aware that Football Lay Profits have had a somewhat torrid time of things lately, and in fact the year as a whole has underwhelmed for the service.  Members were sent an lengthy email last week that provided theories for why this might be so and to reassure followers that measures were being taken to turn performance around.

This is admirable and provides evidence of a tipster who has a desire to do well by their customers. It is a fair point too, to say that a tipster must continually be evaluating their edge, it’s potential erosion, and opportunities for the exploitation of an edge elsewhere.  In FLP’s case, this might mean concentrating on dropping some leagues as a source of lays and finding others.

This is a task fraught with difficulties.  The last thing anyone wants is a system or method that looks superb historically but which, however unintentionally, has been backfitted (please note, this is NOT what I am suggesting FLP has done!).  The fact is that the proof of an edge is revealed by the eating of the pudding, and not until.  The problem of course is that that ‘eating’ process means risking hard cash in the form of placing bets.

From a purely personal perspective, I’m afraid this is not something I wish or choose to do.  I’d rather take a watching brief to see if a tipster who is adapting to changing market conditions, closing off some previously profitable angles and introducing new ones to replace those lost, can do so successfully.

It is true that the best tipsters can modify their methods and strategies to stay ahead of the markets.  I’d go as far as to say that they have to if they have any hope at all of longevity.  I just would rather not be risking my hard earned whilst they go through the process.  It is for that reason that I’m drawing a temporary halt to following the FLP lays.  I sincerely hope to jump back onto the action in the near future.

Portfolio performance for November to date

Main portfolio: ROI 2.83%, ROC 1.24%.

Individual Service Performance

Bet Alchemist: Staked 25pts, +35pts.

Racing Service 1: Staked 31pts, -19.4pts.

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

Football Service 1: Staked 18pts, -2.816pts

Golf Insider: Staked 29.5pts, +4.045pts.

Northern Monkey: Staked 24.75pts, -6.3pts.

Precision Value: Staked 87pts, +26.781pts.

Football Service 2: Staked 25pts, -6.036pts.

Racing Service 2: Staked 14.75pts, +4.625pts.

Racing Service 3: Staked 44.5pts, -15.7pts.

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.