Monday, October 31, 2011

October Review - Part 1

A tremendous win for the mighty Toon tonight has fair cheered me up. Up to third so will enjoy that while it lasts!

So October started very well, fell apart during the middle of the month and then recovered slightly towards the end but it wasn't enough to finish in profit with a £323 loss posted. There really was a mixed bag of results from the portfolio but with Systematic having a very poor month there was little chance of ending up in profit.
A review of each of the services;

Steve Lewis Hamilton. -1.65 pts (-£83). Moved to level stakes in October but didn't work in my favour but despite there being 6 one point bets in the month the difference in loss was only £60 thanks to Wherrimon winning on the 27th. Poor month really for Steve and hope he picks up now the NH season is fully under way.

Equine Investments / Turnover. Out of season for both services really this month and nothing really to write home about with both services dropping a small amount. Hopefully pick up again once the AW season gets into full swing!

Northern Monkey. +27.65 pts (+£274). Tremendous month for Northern Monkey, in the main due to My Girl Anna winning with a 3 point bet. Ignoring this bet would be wrong as Wayne got the point structure of this bet perfect. Top rated bet and wins. Continues to impress at a very low cost.

Football Elite. +1.37 pts (+£34). Topsy Turvy month for Football Elite but good to see profit and a stabilisation of the service. Many suggest I should up my stakes with Football Elite but I think I'd like to see another season of good performance before I do that.

4PA. +24.18 pts (+£484). After a dreadful start to the month which appeared to herald a terminal decline 4PA has bounced back with tremendous results - both Edinburgh Knight and Exmoor Ranger being the highlights. Clear though that the basic system bet is delivering the profit and not the additional thoughts of PCB. Certainly following the BSB staking this month delivered additional profit that would've been lost if following the official staking. Question is - what happens now with the subscription of the service? Any SBC member has access to the system and could do the work themselves. Be interested to see - I'd probably pay for the bsb so I don't have to do the work.

Part 2 tomorrow!

Weekly Update

Obviously today we've reached the end of the month so will be doing some number crunching later. Thought I'd do the weekly update first though.

Overall. Bit of a mixed bag of a week with 4 good winning days giving an overall total for the week of £227. Always good to have a profitable week clearly!! I was hoping that there would be enough to turn October into profit but unfortunately not and looks like I've had another poor month. While the Saturday debate continues - this Saturday was a profitable one so pleasing to see - thanks in the main to the 4PA basic system bet again outperforming the tips.

A good week for... Mr Gekko Bets looks like it may have started the turnaround. A few points profit added to the weekly total with both midweek and weekend bets ending up positively. Clearly I've reduced my stake beyond what was recommended and not a lot of £ profit made but decent return points-wise and its good to see. I will keep going for another couple of weeks on £10 a point and decide whether I'm going to re-stake.

A bad week for... Piecost. No doubt the dunce of the week and October looks like following September as a losing month. I don't think from emails that Piecost have sent that there is anything to worry about it's just disappointing joining a service on a two month losing streak. Pretty sure things will turnaround!

Other news... I've renewed my subs to Systematic for another 6 months. Hopefully the current spell of treading water will come to an end soon. Not much progress has been made over the last few months and it would be good to see this turnaround - especially with subs cost of £750 for six months. I had considered increasing my staking for Systematic to £25 per point as surely we're due a decent run. But think I might be pushing it a bit too far.

Back soon with a look back at the month.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Another decent day

Forgot to mention that luck also played in my favour last night as Football Elite bet was lost when Atalanta missed a last minute penalty and I'd completely forgotten to put the bet on. So a relief for me that I didn't miss a winner but gut wrenching if I'd actually had the cash on!!

Another decent day today and the profit total has ticked over the £3k mark again for the year. Nice to finally get a winner from Steve Lewis Hamiltion which breaks a poor run (and finally my level staking paid off!!) and Systematic Betting continue to turn things around. Couple of solid places from Northern Monkey adding to things with only Piecost failing to deliver with the 2nd blank day in a row - I'm down 39 points on the month (thankfully I'm on test stakes of £5 a bet) but I'm reassured that its one of these services that can have long losing runs but bounce back.

Nothing much else happening - just hopeful the good spell continues into the weekend...

The Saturday debate continues

For those of you who are SBC members I started up a topic on the forum a few weeks ago regarding Saturday betting - seems to have generated some discussion - well worth a read here;

You need to be a member to view.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Luck plays it part

Would be fair today to say that luck played a part in me making a profit of just over £100 today. I was in a meeting for most of the day which meant that I missed the SLH telephone call, and 6 other bets. Fortunately all lost and meant I was up on the day rather than taking a loss. Nice to have these things work in my favour for a change.

With a little more luck we could end the month on profit although I've got £473 to make up to get there - we shall see but looks like October will chalk up as a losing month - the 5th of the year so far.

I'd always set myself an unofficial target of making a modest £20 gross profit a day - doesn't sound like much but this year so far I've only managed only £9.26 per day. If that tells you one thing - is that this is a tough business!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Turning a corner

A decent day today with both Systematic and Piecost delivering profit. Certainly today helped by me mistakenly staking £20 on Comrade Bond (a Piecost tip) rather than the £5 I should've staked! It duly obliged! Nice to get a mistake delivering for a change...

Also started betting on Mr Gekko Bets again - have moved back to £10 a point due to the increased number of bets. Seems the removal of the filters have done the trick - there was 5.5pts profit over the weekend (which I missed) and another 3.3pts today for me. Will continue to bet and review stakes in a couple of months. Probably goes against what I have said in terms of dropping services but feels right considering the review Mr Gekko took and the tweeks made to the service. Be good to continue with more than 1 football service in my portfolio.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Weekly Update

Well that was interesting... as if by magic Systematic Betting produce a belter of a day and clawed back 21 points today - is this the turnaround??

Overall. Another losing week although it ended up not being as bad as it could have been with a £329 loss, but thanks to today it doesn't feel too bad. Clearly not great obviously and it would be good if things could start turning around!! Three winning days but Saturday was another shocker and the damage was done. Dust ourselves down and look forward to another week!

A good week for... This week the honour go to Northern Monkey for having the balls to put out a 3 point bet on a 10/1 shot and it smashing home. Certainly glad I kept my subscription going and for £49.99 a quarter it's difficult to find a service that offers better value for money.

A bad week for... It was going to be 2 weeks in a row for Systematic but redemption today so I'm afraid it goes to Piecost - 15 points lost this week but again a high volume service so suspect things will turnaround soon.

Other news... Getting into the NH season proper now so will see how that develops over the next few weeks. Fingers crossed I can start the trading this week. Mr Gekko started sending bets again this weekend but I haven't checked if results have improved - I decided not to follow (on MGB's advice) but will see how things pan out over the next few weekends before making the final decision.

Onwards and upwards!


Sorry for the lack of posts over the last few days - as I mentioned in the weekly update this week was going to be challenging in terms of work and getting bets on at the same time. While I managed to get everything done it may have been better if I hadn't bothered!!

Certainly been a challenging week with Systematic Betting dropping another 30 points over 6 losing days which brings the current losing streak since the 7th October to 73 points. Not sure how it compares to other Systematic losing runs but feels by far the worst since I joined and is certainly punishing the betting bank and the portfolio.

Graph below shows Systematic performance since 1 August and certainly not moving forward. I've chosen 1 August simply because thats when I upped my stakes to £20 a point.

Admittedly while the current run is worrying I know from past results that the service will turn things around and we'll get back to winning ways - it's just part of the game getting through these runs - and that's mainly about psychology.

With Piecost, Steve Lewis Hamilton, Equine and 4PA all underperforming this week it's been a frustrating time... again...

The only bright spot being the top 3 pointer My Girl Anna from Northern Monkey on Wednesday winning at 8/1 for me. So glad I re-subscribed to Northern Monkey and finally a service where I upped my stakes at the right time.

On the trading front I've managed to download the software and have a tinker with it but haven't yet had the time to get my teeth in and try it out - am hoping to do that at some point this week.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Weekly Update

Just on my back from a cracking game of football at St James Park. Scorcher of a goal from Ameobi. Good day today on the betting front with a decent profit made.

Weekly update covers Mon - Sun.

Overall - down £184 on the week so a good recovery from the two profitable days out of the 7. Unusually these two days were on Saturday and Sunday which as we all know are two of the toughest days to make a profit. Doesn't feel too bad after the weekend and hopefully that's another poor run tackled and we can move onwards and upwards. So YTD just sitting shy of £3k gross profit. Need a whack above that to turn the net loss into profit before the end of the year.

A good week for.. no doubt about it, the week belongs to 4PA and the basic system bets. 2 winners and a place made for very happy reading on Saturday night and while I didn't get the 33/1 for Edinburgh Knight I'm satisfied with the 25/1 a did get. Definitely still feels the basic system bet is the place to be. Interesting to see what they do at the end of October when subs are due.

A bad week for.. unfortunately it's got to be Systematic Betting - just over £500 down on the week so a poor period. The large volume of bets means things can turnaround quickly and can easily recoup that loss in a day or so. Hopefully fortune turns and things will start to head back in the right direction.

Other news.. interesting to see The Football Analyst (see having a top quality weekend with results. Have been tracking the results to see if they matched the general trend of Mr Gekko Bets which they appeared to have over the last few weeks. Now does this mean that maybe MG was a bit premature in pulling the service - or at least letting us have the bets without adding to the official account? I'd be interested to know and extremely frustrated if it was a very profitable weekend.

Looking forward.. desperate to get tucked into the horse trading but I'm not sure it's going to be possible this week -am away with work for a few days this week and standard betting will be tough (if possible at all) never mind getting trading up and running.

Super Saturday

I sometimes feel the general tone of the blog is negative with me constantly lamenting how badly things are going so I thought it was time for a positive post.

Finally had a winning Saturday with £434 profit yesterday. First positive Saturday since 27 August! The success was from an unlikely source as well with 4PA basic system bets delivering the whacking profit - through Dancing Rain and Edinburgh Knight winning and a healthy place from Castles in the air. As mentioned I played the basic system bet rather than the 4PA bets which delivered more profit than if i'd followed the account so extra happy with that. As a recent poster mentioned there could be some merit in continuing with the basic system as it's still delivering healthy profit.

Northern Monkey, Steve Lewis Hamilton and Football Elite all delivered positive returns while Piecost and Systematic's poor runs continue.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Poor run continues

Well after soaring to new highs late last week we plunge to new depths today with an astonishing £1,400 lost since last Saturday. I don't often criticise Systematic Betting but it's certainly been a shocking 8 days with 41 points lost. Yikes! Things can turnaround quickly with Systematic but the service feels like its been treading water since I upped my stakes to £20 per point!

Steve Lewis Hamilton isn't on a great run either - 4 losing bets in a row - bringing us back even for the month with my new level staking!!

And Finally Piecost have managed to turnaround a profitable month into a losing one over the last couple of days!!

I did say I wouldn't worry too much about the short term but it's hard work sometimes!!

Anyway at least we have Saturday to look forward to....

Thursday, October 13, 2011

To Diversify or Not To Diversify

One of the things that often gets commented on or observed about my portfolio is that I follow too many tipsters. This doesn't surprise me and it's something that constantly troubles me - do I indeed follow too many tipsters?

My reason for doing this is diversification! But does it work?

When I first started this game I started out with The Mathematician, followed by Steve Lewis Hamilton, followed by God knows how many tipsters - truth was at that time I wasn't really thinking about diversification I was thinking about making as much cash as possible in as short a time possible!

But more recently the main reason for following the number of tipsters I do is to diversify. Clearly we all know what this means - when one tipster runs poorly, one does well and it smooths out the profit curve. It's an age old principle of investing.

Of course diversification does work - but I suspect the problem with my portfolio is that diversification isn't just about racking up the number of tipsters its about making sure that those tipsters focus on different areas of business just as you should spread your investments across the four main asset classes. Additionally though my staking is incorrect and not appropriate for some services - in other words staking is too low to ever make some services profitable.

So what do my tipsters cover and how do they operate;

Steve Lewis Hamilton - Racing - mainly National Hunt - opinion
Equine Investments - Racing - flat / aw - opinion
Equine Turnover - Racing - flat / aw - opinion
Northern Monkey - Racing - flat / aw - opinion
Football Elite - Football (European major leagues) - opinion
4PA - Racing - mainly big races / tv fodder - system / opinion
Systematic - Racing - All - system
Mr Gekko - Football (UK football) - system
Piecost - Racing - All (handicaps?) - system
Market Examiner - Racing - All - opinion

Clearly as betting portfolios go it's one that is heavily focused on racing, more focused on opinion than system and more focused on flat than national hunt. So while I think I have diversified the reality is that I haven't enough. Which doesn't mean that I am going to sign up to more tipsters - so don't worry!!

What probably needs done is some re-balancing and re-adjusting. This all needs supported by realistic staking which ensures that the portfolio is balanced in terms of funding and the weighting isn't to heavy on one service. I want to also add a few things to increase the opportunity for making money out of this business.

So what am I doing?

Well a few things;

1) While I'm still getting the emails from 4PA I will continue to follow the basic system bets. Once subs come up for renewal I'm likely to drop the service and not follow the basic bets at all. Think there is profit there in the long term but time to move on.

2) Dependent on the outcome of Mr Gekko Bets review I am likely to finish following this service - I won't be paying to re-subscribe.

3) Once my subscription of Equine Main is complete I won't renew. This isn't a criticism of the service - but a reality in so much that I can't make the service work for me on the stakes I can afford to play with. It's hard to get prices as well and the combination of the two make it the wrong service for me to follow.

4) I will use some of the stakes saved from stopping following services to increase my staking in remaining services.

5) I am going to look at some of the racing stats support services - and see if I can use these to create my own betting systems

6) I want to start trading and I've spent some money on the services of just before the doors closed on subscribers. In the short term will only be able to dip in and out of this but I am quite excited at trying to work at this. Have got a few hours on a train on Sunday going to the football so will review all the info and strategies then.

A number of things therefore that will help improve diversification - it won't make things perfect but should help spread risk and improve profitability.

So a long post which has helped me get some things in my head down and has rambled along a winding route, ending where I hadn't expected when I started.

Of course, comments welcome.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

September Update - Part 2

Before continuing with the September review just wanted to mention that when doing the daily totals tonight I'd actually reached a new high for the year which surprised me - a welcome surprise though with yearly total peaking at £3,896 on 7th October. But no time to celebrate as a dismal performance over the last few days (mainly from Systematic Betting) has seen the YTD total drop back by £1,199. Some feat losing £1,200 in 5 days!! Suppose it reminds me of one thing - that things can rise and fall quite quickly in this game and don't worry too much about the short term.

Anyway back to September - here's the table of points and cash earned for the month;

And here's the graph for YTD to end of September;

As I said yesterday - ended up being a pleasing month - lets hope October can get out this awful period and come up the same way.

More thoughts tomorrow.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

September Update - Part 1

Finally managed to get back up to speed on the spreadsheets and have logged all the bets. Just working out the analysis but a brief summary of September performance below.

Total profit for the month was £634 which was a pleasant surprise bearing in mind the month wasn't progressing much at all until towards the end of the month.

A good month for a number of services - Steve Lewis Hamilton, Equine Turnover, Systematic Betting all providing decent levels of profit backed up by Football Elite with a good 2nd month of the season. Unfortunately the overall profit was brought down significantly by terrible months from Mr Gekko Bets and 4PA - and we all know these services appear to be in some disarray.

Taking subs into account the month was also profitable - I estimate this to be just shy of £200 a month. This is clearly well short of where I want to be post subs, but with the way things have been going recently I take this as a positive.

Will post points total / latest graph further thoughts over next day or so.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Pause in service

No I haven't come to my senses and decided to jack this all in. Just thought it was worth posting that Mr Gekko has put a pause on the football service after another disasterous weekend.

I have to say I appreciate the honesty and communications from this service but do feel that some background investigation should've been going on while bets were still available to prevent a break in service. But fair play on holding their hands up and we shall see what comes out the other end!

My likely view is pretty much whatever the outcome, that i'll probably stop following though.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Up to my eyes... spreadsheet updates at the moment trying to get September finished and bring October up to date.

Will have it done over the next few days and update with some further thoughts after yesterday.

Back to work tomorrow...


I head home tomorrow after my break and get back to the grind of working life... This week had ticked up nicely in terms of profit and things were looking rosy until we hit Saturday and I've had yet another stinker of a Saturday. I've not totted up the total losses for the day yet but Betfair alone is sitting at -£504 on its own before I look at returns from bookie bets - first indications are you can add another £100+ to the losses.

Mr Gekko and 4PA both had complete wipeouts. These services are both disasters at the moment. For 4PA its the 3rd weekend in 4 that there has been a complete wipe out. All the more depressing and frustrating when the basic system (which is free from SBC) would've delivered a small profit today. Annoyingly this morning, I'd debated as to whether I should just follow the basic system or advised from now on.

My knee jerk reaction is to stop following both these services, accept the losses and move on in the direction i was wanting to head in. I should accept the fact that they might turn around in the future but be confident that I'm better spending my hard earned money on more reliable services. Clearly I can follow the basic 4PA system without paying a £400 pa sub (although advised service is currently free due to poor performance).

In terms of Saturday betting today has been another clear indication that Saturdays should be set aside and enjoyed rather than slogging over a pc getting bets on for half the day. Do I do this though??? Who knows.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Progress / Piecost

Looks like things have gone well over last few days - haven't managed to bring things up to date but progress definitely made.

Will be interested to see if September ends up in profit - October has certainly started well.

Piecost have started well with the launch of the full service from 1st October - looks like for once I have joined at the right time after a poor month during the free period in September which I missed. Feels like a good service in terms of communication / service as well as tips. Glad I got in. I'm only betting small trial stakes on this service for first 2-3 months (£5 per point) to get a feel for it. Additionally am only betting on betfair and will watch how this impacts ROI - its a heavy betting service in terms of volume and throwing more bets at the bookies is potentially going to damage my accounts. If the ROI holds up at levels suggest for Betfair then it looks like it could still be a very profitable service.

Back on a regular basis next week. Good luck with your betting in the meantime