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Monday, 12 September 2022

Race Horses, Trainers & Broken Dreams

Give a moment's thought to horse trainers big and small. It must be a tricky business to try and make a living. I can't say I have any great connections to the training world. I've helped a few promote their services on our website Horse Trainer Directory. The ones who need that little extra promotion are generally thankful, grateful and appreciative. We promote trainers for free because without them we don't have a website. I live by the mantra: in giving we receive. The ugliness of the self is never attractive even looking in a circus mirror. 

I have known a few trainers in passing. Unless I buy a share in a racehorse or dip my hand further into my pocket to buy a whole horse it is unlikely we will have any meaningful conversations. However, you never know who is interested in what you have to offer and I have been surprised by the generous nature of many people who I wouldn't really expect. I remember receiving a phone call from Peter Doyle, the bloodstock agent, who took the time to contact me about a horse he once purchased called Western Art, trained by Peter Chapple-Hyam, in the ownership of Matthew Green and Ben Sangster. This son of Hennesey won at Listed class but struggled with injury at three to a point he was purchased as a riding horse for a lovely lady who I later become friends. I researched Western Art's (Artie) life story: from foal to ''champion'' racehorse. His breeder, Nellie Cox, of Rose Retreat Lodge, in the United States, remembered him well and the two ladies, who both loved him most, had the opportunity to chat about horse and foal detailing those interim years with caring words. 

This story originated from my brother, Tony, a plasterer, who while working on a private job many moons ago got talking to the customer about horse racing. They had a livery business and low and behold ex-racehorse Western Art was stabled there by his owner. It's a small world. 

Western Art stuck in my mind because I follow two-year-old horse racing and, by all accounts, he was a class horse. In truth, racing did this beautiful gelding no favours. He suffered many racing-related injuries which sadly lingered for the rest of his life.

Serendipity. 

By this chance encounter, a story came to life and the opportunity to meet some lovely people who I am still in contact today. Friendship is a creation of coincidence based on shared interests.The love of a horse from a racing perspective and a beautiful thoroughbred who without question was loved most greatly by his last owner who paid the price for others hopes and dreams. 

The pursuit to win. 

I guess it is too easy to consider that every horse trainer is a millionaire. Perhaps money makes its own luck. When you consider leading trainers such as John Gosden, William Haggas et al it is undoubtedly true. They are very wealthy individuals with the luxury of hugely rich owners. For many, money is no object. Their success is an ingredient of money and talent. Others, it is blood, sweat and years (of unpaid work).  

Smaller trainers have to fight for each and every horse, owner and success. Many, I suspect, live a hand-to-mouth existence. The National Hunt has a big heart. The story of a farmer with a horse. Perhaps that is the truth of horse training. The story built on ambition, hopes and dreams. Whether rich, poor or vagrant on the street we can all see through those eyes.  

We have all seen new trainers come and go. Imagine the passion in each individual who follows their dream. Especially so those younger trainers who are reliant on someone backing them financially. Money only goes so far and, I guess rightly so, those paying the bills can be very critical of their performance. Time is never on anyone's side and so often these fledgling trainers fall by the way. 

Sunday, 4 September 2022

Betting Strategy

What's your betting strategy? 

Gambling, betting, investing...name it what you will. I've noticed something disturbing about people who bet. Even the most intelligent, calculated people lose all sense when they catch the gambling bug. Let me correct that point, most people lose objectivity, logic, sense. Some take their betting very seriously, as they should. 

Perhaps the main problem for many punters is they bet for a buzz. It's an adrenaline kick. To be fair, most people bet for fun. Even people who have been betting for decades. Why do I say such a thing about seasoned gamblers? Because for all their years of betting, very few learn how to bet in a disciplined manner. 

They have a basic understanding, idea, thought and it often stays at that fledgeling level. It's like learning basic French but they stay on at college for a decade without progressing to the intermediate or higher level. It isn't that they cannot achieve a higher level but they just don't try satisfied with a thought they know enough. 

Interesting question: How do you select a tip? 


Answer: Like everyone else! 

That's the mentality of most people who gamble. However, if you know anything about horse racing, poker or a skill-based sports betting you should find that answer quite funny, worrying or terribly shortsighted. There is a world of difference between a naive and professional gambler. 

The major point is that they don't bet for fun. 

Betting for most people can only be considered fun because they don't have the skills, experience or knowledge to be viewed as professional. They may think they have a level of knowledge but the majority of punters don't. You need only to scratch the surface to appreciate there is no depth or understanding. Most lack a basic understanding. Even if they bet serious money it doesn't make them professional. The point is they don't realise they are lacking. 

Fun betting, for the buzz, is, in my opinion, bad news. If there is no reason or rationale to why someone bets then everything is a potential bet. That's why people bet, chase their losses, lose even more and their life falls apart. Betting may seem a pretty innocent pastime but without discipline, understanding, consideration and planning it is a bad decision. It's a matter of how much you will lose. 

The principles of betting are more important than the selection itself. The wise man doesn't build his house upon the sand.

The phrase: Bet what you can afford to lose. It is a basic principle that will help most save them losing their shirt. However, if you don't have an answer to a question, when will you see the word STOP? Guidelines, built on knowledge, are key to success. 

Too many people do not appreciate their true naivety when it comes to gambling. Experience comes with time if you have an open mind. Horses aren't the only ones who wear blinkers.

Betting in a routine fashion is brainless. The man who routinely pops into the bookmakers to bet on the machines. If he calculated how much he lost over one year it would be staggering. 

There are hundreds of examples of betting without thinking. 

Don't bet for fun. Don't bet for the buzz. Bet because, on balance, you know it is a wise investment based on knowledge, experience and skill. 

Photo: Pixabay (free) 

Wednesday, 31 August 2022

Psychology of Slot Machines

The old-style fruit machines. 


Just a bit of fun. I doubt too many addicts would agree. However, the mentality of gamblers varies from one extreme to the other. Some bet and walk away, while others simply cannot stop pulling that one-armed bandit or pressing a flashing button until they are broke. 

Interesting how people vary so much. People do their own thing. Some, I guess, are more likely to be addicted to gambling or a certain type of gamble. When over 50% of the population bet, it is a worry for those who realise too late that a ''seemingly'' innocent pastime has cost them their home, marriage and life. 

Fruit machines are one of the most addictive forms of gambling. 

As a child, I used to go to Caister-on-sea for our annual holiday. Every September, missing the first week of the new school year because dad loved his racing at Great Yarmouth. Holidays were cheaper. I didn't like school so I would have opted for one long holiday fifty-two weeks a year. Anyway, the arcade on the holiday camp was ideal for two brothers who liked the look of the fruit machines. It was in the 1970s so we were talking pretty basic stuff. They even had a few of those old, chromed numbers with the Indian head, the class one-armed bandits which these days are collector's items and go for a few grand a piece. We were in our element. A pocket of twopences and motivated by the lights, noise of coins paying out willingly. The smell of hot dogs drifting in the air. Mum and dad listening to the entertainment. Dad with his brown and mild. Happy times. We played those machines with spirit. Not sure, thinking back, what was going through my mind. I guess it was the thought of winning. When you have a pound's worth of change in your pocket anything seems possible! 

Win or lose it didn't make any great difference. Basically, it was fun. I don't regret betting or my parents suggesting it was okay or acceptable. Like father like son. I will be forever proud of my dad.    

In some respects, betting from such an early age may have been a good thing. It brought a realisation that to win at gambling you need to have intelligence and discipline. By the time I was a teenager I was bored to death with fruit machines. I realised they were fixed odds, so long term you simply couldn't win. 

I hadn't played a slot machine in years but thought I'd have a bit of fun on Saturday evening. I use Betfair for betting horses on the exchange but they have everything on the website including online slots. 

I thought I'd bet a tenner. 

Slot machines are very different from the good, old days. But one thing that came to mind was the amount of psychological research which must go into making these games big money makers from casinos, bookmakers or whoever sets these businesses up.

They are made to keep you betting and they have cracked that aspect of betting without question.  

I won £200, so good luck favours the brave. Stopped playing and very much doubt I will be playing for a good few months.  

Friday, 26 August 2022

1966: A Year of Sporting Victories

What a year. 


Like the battle of Hastings in 1066, football fans will never forget the year when England won the World Cup 1966. 

As the quote goes: ''They think its all over...'' Kenneth Wolstenholme's commentary on BBC when England beat Germany 4 - 2. 

He said: And here comes Hurst! He's got...

Some people are on the pitch! They think it's all over!

Whatever your fancy, Sun Bets has lots of great offers.   

It is now, it's four!    

I get the feeling we will have to wait until 2066 to see another FIFA World Cup for our beloved football nation. 

Here is a quick summary of other sporting winners in this famous year.

Tennis: Wimbledon 20th June - 2nd July

Manuel Santana wins the men's final. While Billie Jean King wins the women's. 

Grand National 1966 - Aintree

Anlgo wins at odds of 50-1 for trainer Fred Winter, ridden by Tim Norman. A 20-length victory beating Freddie who was runner-up the year before. 

Gold Cup 1966 - Cheltenham 

Almost as well known as England winning the World Cup, equine star Arkle made this a historic Gold Cup winning for the third time in consecutive years. Tom Dreaper trained this amazing nine-year-old for the Dutchess Of Westminster, ridden by Pat Taaffe at odds of 1/10f. 

More Horse Racing 

Flat racing:

The English Triple Crown wasn't achieved. We had to wait until 1970 for Nijinsky to win the 2000 Guineas, Epsom Derby and St Leger. He went on to win the Irish Derby just for good measure. 

Who won these races in 1966? 

2000 Guineas - Won by Kashmir trained by Mick Bartholomew, French-trained colt who showed class as two. 

Epsom Derby - Charlottown trained by Towzer Gosden. This bay colt won seven of his ten races but retire at four when disappointing in France. 

St Leger - Readers may remember this class horse - Sodium. This son of Psidium was trained by George Todd at Manton in Wiltshire. Sodium finished fourth behind Charlottown in the Epsom Derby and went on to win the Irish Dery in the same year.  

The Boat Race 1966

A long history of the battle of supremacy for Oxford and Cambridge University. The 112 boat race took place on the 26th  March 1966. A tight competition, Oxford won by three and quarter lengths. Cambridge won the women's race. 

1966 European Athletics Championship 

A couple of English victories of note:

Jim Hogan won the Marathon 2:20:04.06

Lynn Davies won the men's Long Jump 7.98 m  

The only two medals England achieved in these championships. 

July 17th saw American runner Jim Ryun set a new world record in the mile timed 3:51.3 

FA Cup 1966

Football fans enjoyed a battle between two tough sides in this final. Everton went on to beat Sheffield Wednesday 3-2. 

Boxing in 1966

29th March - Muhammed Ali defeats George Chuvalo in 15 rounds on a unanimous decision.

21st May - A fight few UK boxing fans will forget. Henry Cooper deserved to beat Muhammed Ali ( Cassius Clay) in their first fight in 1963 with a left hook in the final seconds. The fight was delayed when Ali's gloves had to be changed after a tear (which was later detailed as a deliberate act by his corner). Cooper was outfought and stopped in the 6th round by a technical knockout in 1966. 

Muhammed Ali had a busy year going on to defeat Brian London by knockout in the third round (6th August)

10th September Ali had a tough fight with Karl Mildenberger with a 12th round TKO. 

He concluded the year retaining his WBC heavyweight title knocking out Cleveland Williams in three rounds. 

What's your favourite sporting year?

Thursday, 18 August 2022

Should I Follow the Money When Betting?

Did you see that well-backed horse - hosed up!


How many times have you seen a horse backed off the boards win? When you flick through the results they all seem to win. But is that really the case? I don't know many different areas of horse racing, but I do understand two-year-old horse racing to a very high standard. After studying this niche for over 30-years, I can speak with some authority. However, in truth, the only way to make an objective assessment is to run a statistical test on the data to see if it is significant.

Data has power and limitation. 

I have little doubt following money within two-year-old racing is worthy of note from a trainer perspective. I have run studies on all juvenile trainer debut runners and horses making their second start. A good few trainers are very consistent and this is backed up by regular profits.I don't want to detail any specific names because this information is hard to find. It is similar to following the seam of gold and hope it leads to a major find. 

What I would say, is that two-year-old horse trainers have a much better strike rate on their second start compared with debut. Hardly surprising, hey? Although a couple of trainers feature just about as good results on both starts. This proves how fit some trainers get their horses. It is important to understand the intent of owners and trainers. If they don't want to win on debut they are very unlikely to do so.  

Interestingly, the betting is very important for most horses racing on their second start. In fact, I would suggest that a small drift from one price to the next can be the difference between winning and losing. Anything can happen in racing. Even the biggest, most powerful stables, can win a 50/1. Simply because they prove a surprise package or the opposition are poor or a favourite disappoints. 

In general, the betting of most two-year-old horses is significant. Smaller trainers can get lucky and have a real star in their stable but even these are usually known as a talent before the start of the race. They are backed. 

Sunday, 14 August 2022

Can I Make Money Writing About My Niche Sport?

If you enjoy your sport, this may be of interest. 

I have been running a number of sport/gambling websites and blogs for a number of years and making good money from a small amount of work. So, if you have a passion for your sport then there may be an opportunity to make a second income or even a full-time living. 

For a taster, you can write for Patient Speculation and in return, I will help you get closer to the goal of being a professional blogger. 

So what do you need to know or do to get on the ladder?

You need to enjoy your sport and have a high-level or unusual twist on what maybe football, horse racing, casinos or any sport for that matter. 

To get your new blog established takes time. That's why you need to have a passion for the subject matter rather than simply writing for cold, hard cash. That may well be the final destination but it can be a long road to get your blog established to a point where it can make money. 

If you want to know more about making money online, then feel free to email me here jason@professionalgamblers.co.uk 

Always here to help.

Friday, 5 August 2022

Most Commonly Played Casino Games By Players

The betting industry has been flourishing in terms of financial growth and volume of expansion after the 1990s. When online casino games started, many companies in the gambling industry faced problems in pooling customers and users. The players were used to playing betting games in sports gambling events. It took a while when they got friendly with the online gaming systems. Today in the 21st century, it can be seen that casino games have become highly popular among the players; the following are the most commonly played casino games.

Roulette

Roulette is a famous casino table game surrounded by the players. It is very popular with business people, mostly because they like to take risks. Whenever the dealer spins the wheel, everyone places their chips on the table, so see on whose digits the dice falls on, the person with that number becomes the winner. There are games like no deposit, no bonus, but you should get along with NJ online casino no deposit bonus only when you have all the underlying knowledge. 

Baccarat

Whenever you walk into a casino, few games can be found, no matter what part of the world you are in. Baccarat is the simplest casino game; it is mostly recommended for the beginners to know the aesthetics of the casino and then start playing the harsh games. All you have to do is place your hands on the table when the wheel is spun, whoever's hand is the closest to number nine wins the game. 

Blackjack

Blackjack is the most classic game of casino. Nowadays, modern casinos have developed several versions of the game to keep it creative and engaging. The Classic Blackjack requires skills and talent to win; it does not depend on sheer luck. If the player wants to win, they must beat the dealer at the hands of 21. However, in European Blackjack, the dealer must do a single face-up of the card while the rest of the rules remain the same. 

Pai Gow Poker 

This game is quite different from all other casino games where players have to play against the dealer. In Pai Gow Poker, you have to play against the casino. This half Chinese and half American game requires the players to be allotted seven cards each, and they have to make the best 5 and 2 poker hands. It is a combination of Chinese Pai Gow and American poker, so it has become very popular amongst the players. 

Video Poker

In video poker, the players have to place bets after putting the coins in the video poker machine. It is a game that requires proper understanding and knowledge of the rules. The players shall get five cards, which can be changed if not desirable for players. When the final cards appear on the screen of the machine, whichever player gets the winning hand has to be paid by other players playing video poker. It is an exciting game when you get the hang of it.