Wednesday, 24 September 2008

The Journey So Far....

I’m conscious of the fact that a lot of readers haven’t been with me since Day 1 on here and therefore, before we move on to the next chapter of The Experiment, it feels like an ideal opportunity to look back on the last 8 months or so.

When I started out on this journey, I had 20 years experience of horse-racing form, 8 years of successful small time punting and 1 month experience of Betfair. My sole intention was to try to find a way that I can earn a second income from my horse-racing knowledge.

Before The Experiment started at the start of March, I used the weekends of February to try to learn to scalp on Betfair. I thought it would be a simple case of finding the most likely horse to win the race and backing that. Once the Betfair market caught on to the fact that this horse was overpriced and was the likely winner, everyone would back it and I’d be able to green up for a nice profit. If the only the world was as simple as that…..

My first ever ‘real’ trade on Betfair was on Rippling Ring which opened up at 15/8 against a Ferdy Murphy hotpot. I knew that the Nicholls horse was wrongly priced. Ten minutes later, I have my full £60 trading bank on Rippling Ring after it drifts to 5/1 and I then have to take a large guaranteed loss. The horse then wins on the bridle and I’m left scratching my head about why I managed to lose!

I’m sure many of you realised after that first day I’d never make it as a scalper and I’d have saved myself two months of hell if I had listened!

In March and April, I was off for 4 afternoons a week to trade and I barely managed to make any money at all in this time. My only real profits in this time were from trading golf and my limited knowledge of this game saved me from ‘going under’ in these two months of being part-time at work. I wisely decided to return to full-time employment at the start of May.

In the middle of April, I had started to analyse handicaps again and I joined The Handicap Forum to share my views on there. I thoroughly enjoyed my 6 weeks on there and it allowed me to develop a new trading strategy on Betfair ultimately. The amount of winners I selected in the 6 week spell was phenomenal and after agreeing to proof my tips for 2 weeks at the end, I made 60 points profit before I decided to return to trying to trade on Betfair.

My new strategy for Betfair involved using my knowledge to analyse races and then backing the horse I’d feel would win the race. I’d then look to lay off for a riskfree bet before the race and hope the horse would win. If a horse drifted pre-race, I’d look to lay off IR for a riskfree bet.

This strategy was then tweaked to green up IR and this was my ultimate strategy on Betfair and is where I got ended up with my trading ultimately. The months of May and June were exceptional months with regards to profits for someone using my stakes and the winners continued to flow regularly along with the profits.

Along came July and suddenly, the world seemed like a different place. I was slowly increasing my stakes throughout May and June and didn’t hit any issues. In July, I suddenly started selecting some very bad drifters on Betfair who continued to drift and drift and some of the losses I suffered were substantial for someone using my stakes.

In a few races, I ended up with my whole trading bank on large outsiders and I was forced to take large sums IR to bail me out. A few bad luck stories later and I had my first losing month of The Experiment. This led me to think long and hard about whether I could make it trading this way on Betfair or not.

Lots of readers then started to ask me about trying to help others make money by offering my race reading skills or trying to offer selections. After listening to the advice of readers and others who were writing to me, I decided I’d give tipping a try. A lot of people had picked up on the fact that I had no trading skills and the only reason I was winning on Betfair was due to the fact I could read races very well.

In August, I started to analyse races on the blog and give out some selections to get feedback on what I do. Similar to The Handicap Forum, the feedback was great and people seemed very impressed with what I can do. I also started to wind down my trading and started to gamble again. I hadn’t gambled during my time on The Handicap Forum (cost me a fair bit of money by not following my selections!) and I wasn’t sure how I would do.

The highlight of August was picking an 11/1 and 13/2 double on the same day in a tipster comp. After listening to more feedback on here, I decided I’d like to take the race analysis and tipping seriously and decided to showcase my talents by giving everyone a free month of race analysis and selections in September by email.

As we all know, this month hasn’t gone great for me but so far, I’ve had winners at 11/1,4/1,5/2 and 100/30 at SP. As I’ve made clear on here, this has been my worst month this year with regards to winners and I know I’ve picked the worse time of the year to have a bad month but that’s life!

However, as some of you keep telling me, I’ve had 2nds at 14/1, 14/1, 5/1 and 14/1 and 3rds at 15/2, 12/1, 7/1 and 25/1.

If I had a little more luck this month, one of the seconds would have won (River Falcon still hurts me!) and I would have been in profit for the whole month.

As this month has gone on, I’ve taken on board all of the feedback and I’m sure that I’ll learn from my errors this month and in the future, we can all look forward to consistent long-term profits.

So, I think that brings me up to date with where we are with The Experiment. I look forward to chatting to as many of you as possible across at the new site and whatever happens, I’ll continue to use the blog to document my progress.


NS said...

Hi Graeme

Just had a look at the new site - looks fantastic. Best of luck mate.


Graeme Dand said...

Still a work in progress mate and won't be complete until later this week...

Couldn't resist the opportunity to give Andrew his moment of fame!


GeorgeH said...

Things can only get better Graeme!
Regards, Georgeh