The Psychology of Gambling - Horses

jpaul71
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Postby jpaul71 » Fri Sep 26, 2014 8:15 pm

Here's a psychology - if you're losing money you're not doing it right!

Your headline says it all - gambling! You should be betting with a clear cut strategy in mind that makes you a winner not a loser. Gambling is for fools I think someone once said but that's the way I like it. The only people who like that approach are the bookies!

Betting or strategic placing of bets will make you a profit. I think I've reached this nirvana plateau - I expect to make a gain and I've got a few horses strategically placed to hear about how a horse might be going). It is not going to make you rich - statistically it can't! It's just a lot of fun but only the very few will make an actual living out of it.

Mod edit : Please refrain from discussing monetary amounts in discussion thank you.

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Postby deswalker » Fri Sep 26, 2014 11:55 pm

If you are losing money you're doing it wrong? On what timescale?

Should that count for every bet, or every week? Or perhaps you add up the score on a monthly basis?

What if you have a bad month but the previous 6 months were profitable?

At which point do you stop and look at the underlying strategy? After 2 months of loss? Or two losing bets in a row?
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Postby horsetaylor » Sat Sep 27, 2014 11:46 am

Surely the ultimate system for making a profit on the horses would be using the pricewise guarantee prices. They are guaranteed for 15 minutes in the morning and then immediately shorten after, can then be laid off on the exchanges to make a guaranteed profit. That would be the way to MAKE money. Unless you are reading into the form on a daily basis which can be so time consuming, and then there is no way of telling if a horse is about to improve or regress. Prices nowadays are generally formed around potential rather than known form and i think that also gives punters an advantage nowadays. Many people follow the unbeaten types for a reason, their sexy profile. Thats a gambler, a strategist would immediately know that the horse is not a frankel and can get beat. They do the ins and outs work out what races or conditions or opposition outlay the best percentage of that runner getting beat and lay it.

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Postby oldmansea » Sun Sep 28, 2014 10:11 pm

All this analysis about gambling and psychology. It's never been easier to make money and if you can't make money backing horses you really should accept it for what it is. A hobby. I can't stop making money. I play with systems, different approaches. Bet singles, bet multiples just to vary the monotony. And I keep making profit after profit month on month, year on year. Its simple. Value first, middle and last. I don't trust myself to find value like a pig snuffling out truffles. My mind is clouded with every sort of possibility that like Hamlet I am paralysed by inaction. The solution for me is to enshrine my approaches into rules and let them run. Simple as that. I haven't got a mind like a computer. It doesn't keep coming up with the same answers if I feed the same data in. It varies with my mood, what I have eaten, late nights etc etc. Studies of exam marking have shown that even such an empirical assessment of the truth, given guidelines and testing and regular meetings to align marking methods, still mean students score better after the marker has had a cup of coffee.
Two examples. I backed Bronze Angel to win the big race though it was one of five I arrived at. I could not make my mind up but applied my rules. It decided it for me. Today, Best Example at 3/1 turned over the 1/3 fav. I backed it. It had 2 runs in its life and had been beaten 21 lengths last time. One of my rules regards idiosyncratic courses and the reliability of form shown there. Though I could not make my mind up about the horse my rules did...and Brighton is a place where horses can run unaccountably badly. Except that it IS accountable and the camber is the culprit.
Rather than rely on the variations of chemical imbalance and hormones, if you know what you are doing and I do, get around the inherent instability of mental states and enshrine the rules into a code by which you bet. But you have to know what you are doing.
I repeat. Anyone can make money backing horses its the easiest thing imaginable. If you try and still can't do it take up something else, or read read read the forums and think deeply and learn the greatest rule of all....interrogate every predjudice until you understand the wellsprings of convictions about how horse A or B will run.
Given the margins that exchanges work to you would have to be extremely bad not to be able to make money consistently. You are only asking yourself to be a tiny bit better than the herd.
Computers don't suffer fluctuations with the same data. People do. If you are really concerned that your psychological approach is not right make sure it cannot obfuscate what was clear. And when I say interrogate I mean interrogate. You will always try to lie to yourself. We all do. Only by knowing we lie can we set traps to get to the truth.

The biggest psychological barrier to winner finding in my experience is that it becomes confused with self esteem. The buzz of adrenalin over a 10/1 winner announced to a crowd of half drunk friends is so much better than a 6/4 shot. 'Anyone could tip that' That adrenaline shot can be fatal if it hooks you into believing that bigger is better and popularity is a winner finding contest. In the same way that a previous poster is probably kicking himself for the drum banging over the Camb fav that got beat. There is no reason to do so. The logic was flawed on that occasion...so what. The reason I rarely post tips despite the fact that I keep winning is that I know that it knocks confidence, publicising losers and all people want is a big winner. They remember the losers but not the winners. Making them a reasonable profit over time is so much less exciting than the random big hit. I back up to 12 horses a day, would I really write up or explain the 100 plus rules that determine a bet? No. If you know yourself truly. Your motivations and what makes you who you are you will know enough to make a construct which can contain and iron out the aberrations that could make you a loser. One of mine is to not give tips. I suspect many of the posters would be better off talking less and learning more. The rule for posting is post to find out and post what is worth reading not what is worth writing.

I don't, by saying winner finding is easy, wish to encourage anyone to bet beyond their means or stake more than they can afford. If you can't make betting pay putting 1p on a horse nothing changes when you put 100 pounds on it. All it does is increase the pressure and hence change the chemical balance in your head.

Good luck to anyone who bets.

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Postby andy180 » Mon Sep 29, 2014 6:52 pm

i have read most of the posts on here and they all are great to read regarding one of the posts some one said cant remember who ive read that many lol ,that they only bet on something if they get the early price by waiting for the bookies to price up and then get on ,and they dont bet if they dont get the price they want ,but surely if they want say 4/1 on a horse and that horse opens 7/2 ,thats telling me just because its half a point shorter they are not going to back it ,what if the horse then proceeds to win at 7/2 ,surely backing a 7/2 winner is better than not backing it at all . ???? on the point of gambling tho i only stake small as this is only what i can afford to lose

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Postby nors » Tue Sep 30, 2014 9:57 am

We have gone a bit off topic recently but all the posts have been good reads.

To fully master any subject takes years of practice and even then there are always changes that need to be learnt.

If you enjoy something then that is a start and i have always thought that our expectations must be kept in check.

I do not expect to win all the time but if i can be right on enough occasions and the prices are good enough for me to profit in the long term then i am happy. This acceptance that i am going to be wrong lots of times enables me to be wrong and not to get too hung up on it.

So andy180 that is the point of the price, you are weighing up the risk to your money versus the price available. If you continually accept lower prices then it will be harder for you to profit in the long term.

On an average day you may back 3 or 4 horses or teams or bets, take prices that even if only 1 of them win will give you a profit. If we all did this i suspect even with the worst case scenario and them all losing on the day then the following days would see us back in profit.

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Postby deswalker » Tue Sep 30, 2014 10:04 am

@andy180

I would take 4/1 on a selection and leave 7/2. But in that case 4/1 would have been the absolute lowest I would have taken. Yes it may well win at 7/2 but so what?

Why not wait for that horse that you have priced at 4/1 which the bookies have at 8/1?

Basically there has to be a cut off point doesn't there?

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Postby Runner Runner » Tue Sep 30, 2014 2:12 pm

You have to treat Trading/Punting as a Business, and you have to be a very good planner, and good at math's.

Have an Edge at your chosen Sport.

Build a Risk management structure around your Trading/Betting Banks.

Always remember that protecting your Trading/Betting Bank is the No1 on your list.
Never treat money as fun/bets.

Keep Records of all your Trades/Punts.

If you are doing the above a-mentioned so far, you are heading in the right direction.
+ use several bookies & set limits & don't act on emotions
The life starts where challenges start!

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Postby jpaul71 » Thu Oct 02, 2014 8:43 pm

yep I'd invariably leave the 7/2 - it's not a value price. It's not about winners it's about the right price for the chance of winning.

I didn't back the fav for the Cambridgeshire if you read my post. If he was 8-1 or better 7 places I would have backed it but it never was so I left it alone. I picked up some money from some EW value bets on the day. Not much but returned a 25% return on my stake which I am always happy about. Not going to make that in a bank!

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Postby nors » Tue Nov 11, 2014 5:51 pm

So when you back a winner early in the day

1. Do you bet with more confidence in the next race?

2. Do you bet with the same mindset as if it was your first bet of the day?

3. Do you stop?

4. Do you increase/decrease your stake?

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Postby oldmansea » Tue Nov 11, 2014 7:04 pm

So when you back a winner early in the day

1. Do you bet with more confidence in the next race?

2. Do you bet with the same mindset as if it was your first bet of the day?

3. Do you stop?

4. Do you increase/decrease your stake?
Quit, if that was my only scheduled bet, if the first of several, ignore it and bet according to the plan unless the winner tells me something I did not know before about the course, stable, jockey going etc etc the fact that you feel good has absolutely nothing to do with the next event.

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Postby TDawgTipping » Tue Nov 11, 2014 7:43 pm

So when you back a winner early in the day

1. Do you bet with more confidence in the next race?

2. Do you bet with the same mindset as if it was your first bet of the day?

3. Do you stop?

4. Do you increase/decrease your stake?
I tend to try and avoid the impact of emotions by betting earlier in the day. Doesn't always work for me with prices and other factors (e.g. changing weather), but if you have x number of horses you really fancy on any one day the only time to truly objectively back them is when you have no previous results to consider within the last few hours.

However, when I have got other bets to put on and have had a winner it just increases my confidence. I don't increase/decrease stakes on the day, my staking plan is set out the night before when I look through the racing. If I am watching the racing with my dad and I have had a winner, I may have a few fun bets, but these are minimal stakes expecting to lose money rather than as a result of the increase in confidence meaning I expect to win money. I've decided to give myself a "fun bank" and "serious bank" to cover both of these factors in the future.

On the other hand, I have found that if I haven't put a later bet on and a horse that I've backed gets beaten out of sight, I may reduce stakes or not bet at all. I realise that this is massively counterproductive and I have lost out on a few winners/break even days because of it, but it only happens rarely as I know it is a problem I have at the moment and I try to counter it by betting AM with no previous results to consider as mentioned above.

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