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Free money, but what’s the catch?

How would you like some free money from the horse racing at Ascot on Shergar cup weekend? A couple of clicks and you have instant profit on your screen, it’s that simple!

There is a catch though. While this profit may appear on your screen, it may never actually appear in your account. As with most things, if it appears to be too good to be true, it probably is.

Read on if you want to find out why.

The Shergar Cup at Ascot

The Shergar Cup isn’t your normal horse racing format, it’s a team competition. Its introduction was a way of making horse racing appeal to a wider audience. It was conceived as a sort of ‘Ryder Cup for horse racing.

Run at Ascot once a year a variety of teams from Great Britain and Ireland compete with the rest of the world, Europe and an all women’s team to win races and points to decide the winner. No royal procession will take place at Ascot racecourse, but the Royalty in the racing world will come together to race and as a result, the coverage on ITV racing and other channels will be a bit different and quite high profile.

The betting markets will also be quite a bit different on the Betfair exchange. The amount of money traded on these markets will be OK, but often a little less than you are used to. So if you are trading horse racing pre-race, you will find the markets act very differently. They don’t act like a normal horse racing meeting.

How betting markets are priced

When you look at a sports trading market, in an outright market than can only be one winner. That is why, if you add up all the odds and percentages, the market will settle on a book value near 100%, the is a 100% chance of a winner in that market.

If you look at the top left or top right of a market on the Betfair betting exchange you will see a percentage figure. This figure represents the sum of all offers in that market. It should always be slightly above 100% on the back side and below 100% on the lay side over the long term. This is because the spread between two prices creates a differential in price over the market on either side of the book.

If you can lay above 100%, your payout is only 100%, but your profit will be anything above that. You can’t just place one lay bet, you need to place a lay bet across the entire market to capture any profit. If you look at the Shergar cup markets at Ascot today each one is over 100%. Perhaps an excuse to get tucked in and make a small fortune by laying the field?

It’s obvious that people are actually doing this. You would normally expect about £10-30k in a market but often an hour out. But at Ascot on Shergar Cup day you can often see much more than this

The flaw with this Betfair trading strategy

Laying the field like this for a guaranteed profit is not like normal Betfair trading, so people often get caught out. It’s easy to lay the field using any Betfair trading software, but even Bet Angel can’t specifically know exactly what you are trying to do. So all it can do is follow your instruction regardless of the consequences.

The upshot of this is that you have all the power and your slavish servant Bet Angel will dutifully follow your every command. Even if you ask it to march off a tall cliff. This is where things can go wrong! Let’s examine exactly what can go wrong at this racing meeting.

The problem with the strategy of laying the field pre off at the Sherger Cup is that all the Ascot markets today contain reserve runners that WILL be removed before the ‘true’ market is formed. So anybody betting or trading before these races are doing so in a ‘false market’.

The wiki entry for the competition clearly states this as do the Betfair exchange rules. If you carry on doing this, as Betfair will allow you to continue to do so, you may have a lovely green on your screen but eventually, you will totally clean out your entire Betfair account and then some!

Now, of course, you can exploit this apathy but doing the opposite. This is why I warn everybody each year, so they don’t fall into the trap. But the fact is people blunder into markets without reading the rules or understanding the true structure of the market. So despite alerting people, there always seems to be people on the other side.

One of the best ever examples came from the money-saving expert forums. Read about the incredible fiasco on the forum. It turned into a ‘money-losing expert’ site for that horrific period before people realised they had made a terrible mistake. Greed can be a horrible master.

I hope by posting this blog you will understand false markets a bit better and avoid them in future. Have a look at the Ascot markets today to see a false market in full effect. Give it a go on either side if you want to see what it can do to your P&L. You have been warned!

The post Free money, but what’s the catch? appeared first on Betfair trading blog | Expert advice from Professional Betfair trade.

Using Bet Angel on an Android Device

Introduction

OK, first things first. Bet Angel will not run natively on an Android device.

But in the days of cloud computing, this does not matter. We can still access Bet Angel on an Android device. We need to use a go-between computer. In our case a VPS. It is this computer that runs Bet Angel. We can then use our Android phone or tablet to access this computer.

What is a VPS?

A VPS (Virtual Private Server) is simply a computer running Windows that we remotely connect to using a login. Once logged in, it looks and is used like a normal Windows computer. A VPS has many applications and in our case, we are going to use it to run Bet Angel.

How do I access a VPS on my phone?

You will need to download an app from the Google Play store.

As we will be accessing Microsoft Windows, I recommend you install an app called ‘Remote Desktop’. This is free and provided by Microsoft themselves for just this purpose. There are alternatives out there if you wish. But why bother with an alternative if the daddy of them all is free?

Mysteriously, once installed it no longer calls itself ‘Remote Desktop’. Not at the time of writing anyway.

The app is called ‘RD Client’. This is because someone in Microsoft is longing for the old days and prefers the word ‘Client’ instead of something like ‘VPS Login’. Anyway, a ‘Client’ is some software that connects to a ‘Host’. The host in our case is our VPS.

Where do I get my VPS?

If you haven’t already got a VPS then nip over to Bet Angel’s website here and get yourself one. The minimum sign up is one month and it’s worth having the extra option to log in to Bet Angel whilst you are away from home. Go here – https://www.betangel.com/vps/

 

Setting up the App.

Now you have your VPS details. Make a note of these three things:

  • IP Address
  • Username
  • Password

Tap the ‘+’ in the top right. You will see ‘Add PC or Add Workspace’

Click on ‘Add PC’.

At this point, it will try to detect a computer on your local network at home. Or if you are trying this at work, it could detect many computers on your work network. Ignore these and tap ‘Add Manually’.

In the field, ‘PC NAME’ enter the IP address you have been given for your VPS. It will be a set of numbers such as 17.34.45.2 or similar.

Next, tap on ‘User Account’ and choose ‘Add user account’. Here you can add the username and password you have been provided.

TOP TIP – The username and password MAY be ambiguous. For example, is it a ‘1’ or an ‘L’ or and ‘l’. Some keyboards make these all look the same! Use copy and paste from the email sent to you by your VPS provide.

You will also see an option to give your VPS a ‘Friendly Name’. This could be useful if you are setting up multiple remote computers and will help you identify which is which. Call this one ‘Bet Angel VPS’. All the options leave as they are for now. Once you are familiar with the Remote Desktop App you can explore and find lots of ways to break what we have set up for you.

Now tap on ‘Save’ and you will be back at the list of PC’s with your recently added VPS available.

Connecting to your VPS

All you need to do now is tap on your VPS and the app will attempt to connect.

At this point, you may see a warning saying ‘Certificate can’t be verified.’

The reason you are seeing this is that your VPS does not have a certificate. You are free to add one if you wish but for the purpose of running Bet Angel, you will not require one.

Check ‘Never ask again for connections to this PC’ and then tap ‘CONNECT’

Using Bet Angel On Your Android device

Turn your device sideways.

Your phone screen will look like this:

Using the mouse cursor

Because you are looking at Windows running on a remote computer and not the device you are holding, you need to be aware that touch and tap will now work differently.

The mouse cursor will move as you touch the screen and you need to move the pointer over the Bet Angel icon. Tap twice to simulate a double click of your mouse. Remember you will need to use the mouse cursor like this whilst using the Remote Desktop app when logged into Windows.

After a little practice however, this will become second nature.

Use Bet Angel as you normally would. Obviously using a smaller screen will make using some of the features challenging! I would recommend constructing advanced automation, linking to a spreadsheet and using multiple ladders are saved for when sat in front of your regular multi-monitor setup.

But as a tool for accessing Bet Angel whilst away from your desk, using an Android device is simple and will definitely come in handy.

The post Using Bet Angel on an Android Device appeared first on Betfair trading blog | Expert advice from Professional Betfair trade.

How you can use the FOMO factor to find high-quality trades

Let’s talk about the FOMO factor. What is the FOMO factor? Well, it is fear of missing out, and it drives a lot of decision making.

Following the crowd…

A lot of that decision making is pretty errant in the scheme of things. It was one of the main reasons that you saw people buying toilet rolls last year! It wasn’t the fact that they needed more toilet rolls, It was the fact that everybody else was buying that drove those people to make that decision.

They would drift past the aisle and think, well, if I don’t buy one, then I won’t have any as they’ll all be gone, so I’m going to buy some! You can also see this kind of thinking manifest itself in financial markets and sports of all different types. However, the funny thing is it can lead you into a trap.

It’s straightforward to get involved in something. You see it in general circumstances, where people cotton on to something and then people don’t want to miss out on that. So they end up getting sucked in with the bandwagon effect.

What is the bandwagon effect? Well, everybody else is doing it, so I need to do it! People just lose all sense of judgment regarding whether it actually makes sense to do that or not.

“But I could make money on this…”

When we look specifically at financial and Betfair trading markets where money is involved, that is dramatically amplified because all of a sudden, you’re going to fear losing money on that as well.

You fear getting in, but you also fear getting out, and it’s just a right mess.

This describes why a lot of people struggle with trading, but it also beautifully describes exactly where the best points are to be within the market., where you can play all of that to your advantage.

So let’s examine exactly how that comes to play out, why that is the case, and more specifically, what can we do about it?

How to spot a FOMO theme

There are several ways in which you can use the FOMO factor to your full advantage, and the first way that you’re going to look at when a day develops a certain theme. We mean by a theme that there is a recurring pattern that occurs during the day that starts the FOMO factor. It fires up a little bit of psychology, and then you can anticipate how that will manifest itself going forward.

The clearest example that I can give you is when a jockey wins a couple of races or a trainer, and so people start betting on the next race on that basis. So people put two and two together, make 325.6 and use their last two races as the basis that they’re going to bet on the next race.

That’s driven by this case of noting something that has happened and deciding to project that pattern forward. Typically, when you get just even a little bit of backing in the market, people see the backing, prompting them to back the whole thing snowballs.

To take advantage of this, keep an eye on how a day develops because that may give you a clue as to how a future race could unfold. Let’s say that there’s a very heavily backed horse in the first race and that horse loses or wins, and then you start to see backing activity in the second race. If you spot a repeating pattern, you can exploit it from a Betfair trading perspective.

So when you see significant amounts of activity in the market, you may find significant amounts of activity in the next market. Again, if the favourite in that race is heavily backed, then you’ll probably start to see activity on the next race from there. These themes develop over the course of a day and can have many different origins.

Anticipate the FOMO

When you start to pick up on a theme, your role as a trader is to begin to anticipate how that will manifest itself in the next race. So that’s the first way that the FOMO factor can develop itself and how you can exploit it.

However, there are other ways there are a little bit more subtle, and curiously, this is by going against it.

Imagine you turn up to the market, and you can see that it’s been in a long trend, and you’re thinking should I join that long trend? The interesting thing is, unless there’s a theme behind it, you may want to adopt a strategy that opposes it.

Now how do you oppose something that’s in a strong trend? Well, the interesting thing is that if you get, say, for example, an overnight gamble or some steady backing on something. Typically there’s a price at which people aren’t willing to back it any longer, especially if there is no current theme behind it.

So if there’s a series of gambles going on, then that qualifies as a theme. But if this is just an isolated runner that starts to steam or maybe it’s drifting dramatically, it can work in both directions, then you may want to look at opposing it on the other side.

Or perhaps there’s not much time left in the market for you to be able to ride that trend for very long? If that’s the case and if those things are in place, then I suggest you go against it.

Understand how to catch the wave

You will find that when people arrive in the market, they enter the market by looking at the price, which then becomes their anchor point. If the price starts to come in from that particular point, people notice those prices coming in to believe they should do something. They may also feel the urge to see some confirmation? As the price comes down, that confirmation gets stronger to the point at which they feel obliged to press the button.

Now, at that point, the price starts to head back in the other direction. I’m sure that you’ve all seen this because I’ve experienced it as well. How frustrating it is that when you do one thing and the market seems to do the other. When talking to people about trading, people complain that the market’s fixed or it always seems to do the opposite of what they expect, but it’s a prevalent trend within any trading market.

So the point at which the person gets involved in the market typically is right at the bottom of that particular trend. At that point, people who are in the market much earlier are deciding to start to get out. Therefore, this person will hold on and hold on as the price heads back in the other direction. It starts to create a potential loss for them, and at some point that pain becomes too much. Typically that point is the anchor point that they saw within the market, so they bail their position at that point.

Guess what happens now? Well, the market then comes right back in the other direction. If you experience this regularly, you are being bullied by the market, anchoring your trade incorrectly, and succumbing to the FOMO factor.

Going against the trend can benefit you

If you’re in a market and there’s no underlying theme, and it feels like you’re a bit too late for a trend to develop or for you to catch a trend, then consider going against it. You will see me doing this on a range of different videos where I catch the market either at the top or the bottom of a trend, exploiting this characteristic.

Generally speaking, all of the smart money was in much earlier, then we reached this point of sort of exhaustion where it suddenly becomes lay value or people who’ve had large positions start cashing it out. What I’m trying to do is looking for that heavy backing activity to stop, for the market wobble and stabilise at that particular point and then it will be near the lower end of its trading range.

That’s the point at which I get in the market to try and ride it as it goes back out. I do that for two key reasons:

  1. People at a much higher level, when they see the prices stalled, will start closing out their position because they want to maximise their profits. They fear missing out on those profits.
  2. People who are in tough positions who basically got in too late will start escaping the loss. They fear a much bigger loss so they will dump their position there.

Very often, you will get a lovely reversal at this particular point within the market.

So it’s slightly different from the first example we looked at, but it relies upon pretty much the same underlying psychological characteristic.

Summary

The fear of missing out is genuine. It’s part of human nature, and it’s one of the trends that I see repeating endlessly within the market. It can come in a couple of different forms and for a couple of different reasons.

I have done articles in the past on these topics and the second version of FOMO, which is basically where people pile in too late, and the market starts to reverse, where that trend has basically come to an end.

So the interesting thing about the fear of missing out is it’s based around scarcity and fear of loss. You can identify that in the market; you can anticipate that particular scenario and profit from it.

If you apply some of this knowledge to how you interpret and look in the market, I’m sure you will pick up on this opportunity too.

The post How you can use the FOMO factor to find high-quality trades appeared first on Betfair trading blog | Expert advice from Professional Betfair trade.

How can you really profit from betting in the long run?

When you’ve been betting profitably over a large number of years, across an even bigger number of events, naturally the most common question I get is – what’s the big secret?

Over my many years of trading, I have found a number of key facets that are fundamental to being able to bet profitably over the long term. However, this is often something that a lot of people just can’t do! Not because they can’t, but because they won’t.

It takes a certain approach to be able to do this correctly and a lot of people do not get over all of those hurdles to be able to do it – will you be able to do it?

What you first need to understand

Before we go into that, I need to prove one of these key concepts to you. If you look at my social media, I will often make suggestions and little hints about things that I think of value or not value, because ultimately that’s how you’ll make money in the long term by betting on various sports. If you can find value, you will make money.

So what is the most common hint I offer? Well one of the most common phrases that you see me post has become a bit of a catch phrase for me…

What I’m hinting at here is that strange things occur more frequently than you would expect, and that’s where you tend to find value.

People love to win!

Typically when you look at any particular betting market a simple problem always comes to the surface, people love to win. People tend to bet on things that are very likely to occur.

Why? Because you’ll get a little kick from getting that win and when we look at tipsters and ‘experts’ those frequent wins will hold you in the game for longer, so you give them more of your money, clicks views or however they profit from your interest!

I approached a couple of people to write an article about how I profited at the Cheltenham festival. After all, I’ve won 55 out of the last 56 races at Cheltenham and that must be interesting for people to know how I did that.

Ultimately no article appeared about how I won because I refused to produce what these publications wanted. What did all of these people want?

Unpleasant truths

They just wanted tips! Which horse is going to win? How is it going to win? How can I profit from it? I get it, of course, everyone wants to find the hack to endless profits it’s ingrained into the human psyche!

If you write an article saying, ‘Back this at Cheltenham’ it gets attention and people follow it. Anything about that isn’t immediate enough in today’s world.

But of course, it’s a lie. It’s never that simple and the nuances of doing this professional are much more complex.

Another element of the betting scene that is something that occurs, again and again, is everyone’s love for the favourite.

Everyone loves a favourite… right?

To explore this, let’s look at this graph which describes how much money is bet on the favourite horse. You can see that if we look at the price there’s much more money goes on the favourite than it does on any other runner in the field.

So do you think that betting on a favourite, especially at a shorter price, is a good proposition or a bad proposition?

We know that the market is generally efficient overall, but that efficiency is made up of some things being efficient and other things not being efficient. If you measure all of those in aggregate, of course, that’s going to be efficient because you’ve got bad guesses and good guesses which will balance out the whole mix.

However, on an individual basis, you will find that there are discrepancies all over the place. It’s those discrepancies that I tend to look for within a market.

So if you’re betting on a favourite, the first thing you need to know is that there is a lot more money betting on the favourite than anything else. The shorter the price gets, the more money is bet on it.

The silly thing is, the shorter the odds get, the less return you will get on it. So the shorter the price goes, the more and more confident people feel that it’s going to win, but the poorer value it becomes. Price is what you pay, value is what you get.

So what’s the alternative?

Well, it is sort of as simple as betting on an outsider! When you bet on something at a short price you’ll receive a few hits every now and again, but you’ll win quite frequently. If you look at outsiders, it tends to go the other way round.

So you’ll get a loss after loss after loss with a win thrown in there once in a while. The problem is it’s very hard to back outsiders over a very long sequence of time because you need a bigger bank than if you were pursuing a strategy that won frequently. You also need the mindset to be able to tolerate a string of losses.

A strategy that wins frequently often also slowly drains away your bank. So while winning frequently feels nice, it often isn’t the way to go.

Winning frequently makes you look a genius, backing a string of losers an idiot. That’s ultimately why people like to win frequently.

Backing Outsiders

However, when you’re backing outsiders, you tend to find it drains very quickly but then gets a nice top-up. What you’re looking to find is to find situations where you could actually get a little bit of an edge.

The curious thing about the market is people don’t bet on the outsiders as much as they do on the favourite. The fact is, on a betting exchange where the market is so efficient. If the favourite is pulling in, by default the prices on the others will start to go out.

Whether the price is pushing out naturally or whether it’s a function of the fact that the front of the field is a little bit too short. It tends to push the value to the back of the field.

Now if you go and back something in the back of the field, you’re probably more likely to find value, but you need to adjust your stakes in proportion to the potential return. So what does that mean?

Taking advantage of that underdog

On the US PGA Golf recently, 50-year-old Phil Mickelson made history by becoming the oldest player ever to win a golf major. He did so at odds of 500/1.

You’re probably thinking, who would have backed Phil Mickelson at 500/1…?


Well… I did!


The interesting thing is I’m looking for value all over the market. When you look at a golf event, the problem that you’ve got is picking up a 500/1, you’d have to bet in a lot of golf events for that return to be able to be seen. So what I don’t tend to do is back just one player, I back a series of them that I think will be in contention at one point or another.

Putting all your eggs in different baskets doesn’t guarantee profit

It doesn’t need to be just one, it could actually be a mixture of those. If you use Bet Angel you would use a tool like Ducthing to set a potential stake or potential profit that you’re aiming for and then spread that liability across a series of events, players, horses, whatever you want.

The problem is that you will lose fairly frequent frequently before those outside events occur. Sometimes the payoff can be absolutely spectacular, but sometimes it’s a bit more moderate.

The fact is that they occur much more frequently than you would expect.

What are the odds of an outsider happening?

Let me give you an analogy. If you look at the number of days in a year, you will know that that is approximately 365. So if I’m in a room and somebody else walks into the room, what’s the chance of us having the same birthday?

Well, to figure this out we need to look at the birthday problem. It’s a well-known piece of maths to do with converse probability, but it always catches people out.

When you look at a room of people, you just wouldn’t expect somebody in there to have the same birthday as you. You would think you’d need at least 365 people before there’s a good chance that two of us had the same birthday.

Well, the answer is that you only need 23 people in a room before two or more people share the same birthday. It seems ridiculous, but if we actually look at the statistics here, you can see as we increase the number of people within the room and the chance, the likelihood of them having the same birthday increases almost exponentially.

It becomes a very heavy odds on even if you increase the numbers to a relatively small amount. This really demonstrates how unusual events occur more frequently than you would expect.

Counting on people being wrong

Now in the context of betting, we have to look at this slightly differently but the fact is that people get the probabilities wrong all of the time. This is where you tend to find value at some of those bigger ends of the market.

Additionally, you can also find value simply because people just don’t bet there. They don’t have the bankroll, the psychology to do it or they just can’t stand the drawdowns. You could also risk looking like a complete idiot when you have a long sequence of losing bets on bets that are ‘obviously’ going to lose.

The fact is that people’s desire to take the easy route tends to lead outsiders, or outside events, generating more value within the market.

So if you want to profit from betting in the long term, my advice to you is always to look for those outside events. Structure your staking in such a way that you can moderate the payoff or the amount of money that you’re using per bet. Then finally, if you can keep your bank going for long enough, those payoffs will occur much more frequently than you would expect.

Ultimately, that’s where you’ll find the most value in the market. So if you want to make betting pay and the long term, that’s exactly what I recommend you do.

The post How can you really profit from betting in the long run? appeared first on Betfair trading blog | Expert advice from Professional Betfair trade.