Tuesday, 28 October 2008

Review of the month!

Loss since last update £13.63

Firstly, where the hell have I been for the past 3 weeks or so?

As I said at the last time of writing, I was really struggling to make time for the blog with everything else that has been going on and trying to find winners and spend time answering posts on the forum was difficult. Therefore, I took the very easy decision to take time away from writing blog updates and I honestly didn’t think anyone would care! The blog isn’t dead………and won’t be until The Experiment finishes.......

I have to laugh to myself as I created the blog and generated the interest in the blog but some people really need to get out more. The number of anonymous comments over the past few weeks has been funny and there are too many to comment on! Basically, let’s just say that lots of people were really keen to see me fail and lose a lot of money from backing my own selections….

Here’s my monthly P&L on Betfair:

Clearly, it’s been another poor month for me and I’m not proud of the month if I’m honest. However, I’ve only traded about 5 days in the month and I’ve backed all of my horses on Betfair Mobile throughout the month, so I haven’t put much time into the trading side of things. To have won over £280 from this month’s trading isn’t a disaster considering how poor the selections have run!

I’m sure all of you have been cringing at the run of losers this month on Racing Index and clearly, it appears tipping isn’t the place for me. This month has reinforced the belief that I shouldn’t be gambling and I should really be adopting a strategy of backing my selections and trading IR which I am doing.

I have made the decision to stop the tipping from the start of 2009 unless things change dramatically. I can’t imagine there will be too many tears but I haven’t enjoyed the tipping aspect one little bit and the thought of doing this permanently doesn’t appeal to me. I will look at it again but it needs to be a spin-off of tipping.

One thing I would say is that I’m really keen on keeping the forum going at the site and the guys on there are a very knowledgeable and decent bunch of guys. Therefore, we will just switch to a forum site I guess at the start of 2009 where we will have very limited members and only invited guests will be allowed to join. Our own little club!

The first question everyone probably wants answered…..how the hell do I make money from backing 29 consecutive losers in a month? Well, without being Einstein, the same way as I have done all year!

If you think back, the only reason I got into this whole tipping game was because people were interested in my knowledge and the fact I could use my race-reading skills to make money from Betfair. However, this didn’t involve gambling and lots of people were saying that with my knowledge, why the hell would I trade and not gamble?

I’ve now wasted the 3 months trying to follow some pursuit of becoming a small time gambler and tipster when clearly, my knowledge is reading races and not picking winners. Therefore, I’m currently playing to my biggest weakness at the moment and not my biggest strength. Not only that, I’m charging people a small fee for that pleasure!

Let’s clear up this thing regarding the fee. I know lots of people weren’t happy with me charging a fee after a very poor free period. However, the fee was for my time and nothing else. If I wanted to rip people off, I would have charged £150 a month for the selections and analysis. I stand by the comment that I could have earned more than the subscriptions this month from working in a supermarket for a couple of evenings a week. I could have!

This month, I’ve been to hell and back for a net profit from subscriptions of around £140. I’ll earn the same next month and the following month. I don’t expect any future subscriptions and I’m guessing the site will stop for a break at the end of the year. £420 profit won’t set the world alight!

I touched on this above but the forum has been the best thing to come out of the last few months. I’ve obviously managed to hook up with Andrew this year which has helped me enormously and now I’ve met a pretty decent bunch of guys on the forum, so it bodes well for the future.

As you all know, the reason I trade horse-racing and not other sports is because it is my hobby. I hate trading and I’m not a trading fan. I’m a horse-racing fan that trades and that’s a pretty important distinction. I’m never going to be a trader and I accepted that a while ago.

So far this year, I’m now past the £3k mark from my activities on here and it’s hardly a disaster. As you all know, I work full-time and I do this for a bit of extra cash and a bit of enjoyment. It’s never been the plan to go full-time or go wild with my trading as I can’t afford to fail.

I’m not wanting to dwell too much on the tipping thing and how bad it is going but it hasn’t gone great. The best example I can think of is last week when I gave 3 selections. I narrowed 3 races down to 3, 2, 3 possible winners and I got the winners at SPs of 14/1, 7/1 and 4/1 but selected 3 losers. Fortunately for me, I was off sick and managed to use my analysis for a change!

I won a fair amount and it recouped all my previous losses for the month. Up until that point, I was odds on to have only my second losing month on Betfair but I turned it around and thankfully, I’m in a small profit again. That’s probably the best example of why I can’t be a tipster. I can’t expect people to pay for someone to narrow races down and choose the wrong selection.

At the start of last week, I narrowed a 16 runner handicap down to 5 and got the 1st, 2nd, 4th, 5th and 6th. My selection was 5th. If I was in the house for that race and on Betfair, I would have made a bomb. 3 of the selections traded odds on IR and all 5 were big prices. How many people can do that at this game? Very few IMO but on Racing Index, it’s another loser on the board!

Clearly, I’m not made for tipping and I’m costing people money. One thing I’ve been saying to people on the forum is that I’d like to continue to share ideas and thoughts on racing on a forum but I wouldn’t really want people to continue backing me blind.

Personally, it hasn’t been the worst month of the year and if you sum my trading winnings to the subscriptions, it’s hardly a disaster. Clearly, I’ve probably put a lot of effort into the month and it may not be worth my time for this amount. However, if I had more time to trade, it would have been a bit better.

I’m conscious of the fact that I’m now eating up my BF allowance for the premium charge and although I have a bit to go before the charge hits me, I should really look at opening up a Betdaq account and seeing how things works across there. That’s what I intend to do fairly shortly.

Overall, not the best month of The Experiment but not the worst month also and I’m hoping next month may prove to be a more profitable month!

Thanks to Leon and Steve for the comments by the way. It’s people like you guys that have been very supportive throughout The Experiment and are great supporters of the blog.

I do intend on updating the blog more regularly again but it will be weekly at best I’m afraid………


graham said...

Hi Graeme,

nice to see the blog still running and this last post almost took as long to read as the gap between posts lol.
seriously though it's good to see that your going back towards the trading route than the tipping route as you have pointed out or people have pointed out before a lot of your selections fall in price either pre-race or I/R due to your ability to read the races and know which ones should run well, this for me is where your value lies.


Graeme Dand said...

Hi Mike.

Thanks for the comment mate! I didn’t think anyone would still be reading the blog if I’m honest, so it’s nice to see a friendly comment.

I agree with you to be honest about where my skill lies. I always knew that but I wanted to go down a different route to see if I could just back winners and gamble a bit more and if you had seen my P&L a week ago for this month, it wasn’t pretty!

I was down about £300 on the month but then I decided to pack in the gambling and start doing what I do best. It’s seen a dramatic turnaround in fortunes and I haven’t put any work into it at all. I have a strategy that works fairly well now after all the months of tinkering.

Once I fulfil my tipping duties up to the end of the year, assuming I don’t have a great demand for it to continue (I doubt I will going by the results!), I will go back go following a strategy of trading my own selections pre-race and IR.

As I’ve made clear since day one, the intention of the whole experiment was to give me an opportunity to try out different strategies to be able to win money from horse-racing. I’ve exhausted nearly every strategy now and they all keep leading back to a strategy of backing horses pre-race and trading IR.

I’m going to relax and enjoy the next two months now and hopefully that will lead to an improvement in the tipping side of things. I owe the guys a fair few winners now, so if I can hit a bit of form, they can all get their money back I hope!

Thanks for reading. I’ll update the blog more regularly going forward I hope!


leonthefixer said...

Hi mate good to see you back posting - I was getting fed up clicking onto your site and not seeing anything new!

This has been one hell of an experiment and a very interesting one which has made for a good read!

Glad that you are still in a profit for the month - with regards to Betdaq I think you should look at it for any pre race backing, however, inrunning is still very poor but as I have said to numerous people there is only one way it will get better and that is by people using it. Betdaq are providing pretty much the same product as Betfair but at a fraction of the price.

Anyway - I look forward to your next post, I hope it won't be another 3 weeks tho!

Graeme Dand said...

Hi Leon.

Nice to be back mate! I missed the blog a bit and it’s a great place to share some thoughts. It became easier to not update the blog everyday to say “I’ve tipped another loser” and it was in danger of becoming a bit boring for me to write and for people to read.

After a 3 week break and not a winner in sight, it seemed the time was right to write something to show I hadn’t done my bollocks on the selections! The amount of anonymous comments from people saying “I told you so” and “I hope you’ve lost £10k” were amazing and some people really need to get themselves a life!

It’s not been a great month and most of the guys who gamble have lost a small fortune following me I guess but I’ve tried my best. I’m clearly not made out for tipping and I have shown myself in a short space of time that I should trade and not gamble (which I already knew!).

I’m actually now starting to turn my head to thinking about trading again and what I do. It’s fairly powerful stuff I think and considering I’m playing around with £10 and £20 stakes on races, to make the amount I have done this month is pretty good!

I was getting a bit annoyed with my lack of trading time for the last few months but if I can get a strategy in place for May next year, that would do me fine. I can trade every night until my heart’s content on the Summer evening racing and that has to be my aim. Throw in the crappy AW racing in the evenings and there are enough opportunities for me to make a decent sum if I have a decent strategy.

Good to hear you have broken the £10k mark! A fantastic achievement and something to aspire to myself. My own target is probably £5k for 12 month Experiment but I’ll struggle due to lack of opportunities in the winter but you can never be sure!

Good luck with your trading and I hope Betdaq continues to grow!


GeorgeH said...

Glad to read your blog again; it has been greatly missed by me. I have been keeping up to date via the proofing website and your very good beginning certainly turned the other way with a vengeance. I am glad you have decided against tipping; it is very difficult, (almost impossible) to consistently tip winners and some of the really expensive outfits have long losing runs. The thing I know for certain is that whenever I tell anybody that I'm going to back a particular horse it invariably loses! So I now never bother to broadcast my silly little bets - and love it when I get the occasional big winner (for very small stakes).

Cheers for now,

Graeme Dand said...

Hi George.

Thanks for your comment! I’ve been keeping an eye out for your dancer horses and they run a lot better than many of my selections mate….

I agree that tipping is very difficult. Today, I’ve given out 4 selections and 3 have now run with two seconds and a third. I’m obviously destined to not pick a winner again this month and the results are pretty disastarous from a gambling point of view.

However, as I’ve shown this month, anyone can make money on Betfair if you use a little bit of pre-race knowledge and you can trade a little.

I’m more disappointed than anyone that I haven’t had the best of luck with regards to winners but I can’t force my horses to win! I’ve tried my best and it’s not been good enough.

Thanks for reading the blog and I hope I can continue to entertain you again with my blog postings. :)


GeorgeH said...

I've emailed you my account for today with W.Hill - and I'm glad I didn't tell you my bets prior to racing today - and the results were very kind for me. The one that let me down for a very good win on my lucky 15 was the Perret/Crowley loser! Still, can't complain.

bettingbiz said...

Its early days to be thinking of jacking things in, if you were up 150 points and dropped down to 130 over a smallish timeframe it would be no disaster, its just unfortunate that you have had apoor run.
stick at it, keep picking value selections and prove the doubters wrong !!!!!!

Its easy for all the idiots to detract Graeme but you are giving it ago which is more than most can dream of. your site is really professional and your knowledge is good. you have just had a bad spell and anyone who succeeds in this game will have losing runs its how they deal with them that counts.

I think by the end of the year you will be in good shape both results and clients wise, you certainly have my best wishes for the success of your site and your own endeavours Ben

Graeme Dand said...


Congratulations on yesterday mate. I didn't have time to reply to your comment last night!

At the moment, the thought of me tipping a winner seems like a mile away!

Thankfully, my judgement in other races is holding up and I made a few quid last night in other races but that's life I suppose!

Graeme Dand said...

Hi Ben.

Thanks for dropping by mate.

Firstly, any thoughts of packing it in are nothing to do with subscribers or detractors if I'm honest. I have more subscribers than I thought I would have and I managed to get myself a very good starting position to launch the business.

However, it was always about trying to help people make money from using my knowledge and I don't think tipping is the way to do that.

During this run, 8 of my selections have traded odds on and lost. Hence, I've made money but others haven't.

I agree that it may turn around and I'm probably missing about 5 or 6 winners now but whether they come or not is irrelevant to me. It was never about making a living from selling tips as I've never been comfortable with the whole tipping thing as you know.

Since I can't trade everyday, I wanted to help others use me and my knowledge to make money while I'm at work and they'd pay me a small fee for that but so far, I haven't found a way to make it work yet!!!!

Good luck with your tips mate. You have a huge strike rate but it seems hard work to make much money if I'm honest from following them!


steve said...

Good to see you haven't completely given up on the blog Graeme.

I guess there's not really much to say about the bad run other than to echo Ben's comments, you always knew with the odds you're playing at a bad run would come along. October is the end of flat running onto start of the jumps so form isn't always that reliable as say mid season. I think you're problem is always going to be the fact you're far too impatient and want it all now and overreact to the inevitable blips that come along.

It's not your lack of race reading that's letting you down just the lack of experience which won't be gained overnight. Just stick it out and see what the next couple of months bring before jacking it in even if only to fulfil any current subscriptions, you never know things may turn around if you let them.

Think it's a good idea to keep the site open as webspace is cheap as chips and it'll be worthwhile for any contacts etc you can make via the site which should bring in opportunites in the future. No idea if you managed to hook up with the person whose name I gave you a while back but if not they could always be options for the future as thats possibly the sort of experience you need to gain rather than jumping in with both feet and going it alone.

At least you're in profit for the month so can't be doing too much wrong so don't see it a a failure.

Graeme Dand said...

Hi Steve.

Good to see you are still reading mate! Something had to give for me as I was writing posts in the forum all the time at the site and saying the sort of stuff I'd usually say on here. Time was an issue and when you're on a bad run, choosing whether to write a blog post or analyse a race for longer was an easy call.

The losing run is interesting if I'm honest for a number of reasons. I've obviously analysed it to death over at the site but maybe I'm just not cut out for tipping a single horse. I seem to get an unbelievable amount of horses that start at high odds on Betfair and trade much lower and not necessarily win or even place. Looking back to May/June, that was how I made my money in the summer. Therefore, I probably did hit an unbelievable amount of winners in these months too but maybe it was slightly fortunate in many ways. The winners flowed at massive prices and it seemed the easiest thing in the world to pick winners. However, whether a horse wins at 20 or gets beaten after trading at 2 IR didn't matter to me in the summer. I was greening up IR and therefore, it all seemed to come alike to me!

I'm not giving up on the idea of selling analysis or my knowledge but maybe I'm giving up on the idea of selling a single selection so to speak. I'm anything but a pro trader when it comes to Betfair but I had enough skills to enable me to make money from a small bank. At times, the returns were out of this world considering my bank and inexperience on Betfair and that is what I need to try to sell if people want to learn.

The contact came to nothing as did a few other things but that's life. I still think the best way for someone to use me is for a trader that is very good to somehow use my knowledge to their advantage. The majority if my horses shorten pre-race and 65% trade at least half IR, so there are opportunities if I can be utilised in the right way!

Last night for example, I finally hit a winner! The fact it was the only front-runner and was well backed made it a dream to trade pre-race and I couldn't lose. Obviously, I wish I had a bigger bank and could absorb any bad losses but I can't, so I couldn't go wild. I got as much on and off pre-race as I could and greened up fairly early for a decent win. The fact it went on to win doesn't matter as I had already banked the profit.

I only use small stakes to trade (compared to most) but I'm hoping to try to put some money aside now and save up for a trading bank again for when the evening racing comes around in the summer. At the moment, all my winnings are withdrawn as they occur but that's the way of life for me at the moment and has been all year.

I'll see the tipping as a failure but not me personally. Obviously, tipsters are judged on winners but it's not the be all and end all for me personally. Having 8 horses trade odds on during the losing run and lose takes some going by anyones standards. It happened to me but that's life. If people had greened up at 1.99 on every horse, they would have been in profit over the month.

I'll hopefully do a post this weekend about the last few days as I'm on a good run and I've turned the month around dramatically which takes some going considering I was over £300 down 2 weeks ago!