Game of Chance

Rod explains how the only way to win long-term is by getting odds that are better than the true chance.

roulette wheel

Professional Punting

With the new series of Game of Thrones starting this week I thought an article called “Game of Chance” was appropriate, as there couldn’t be a better description of what profitable punting is all about.

There’s a common misconception that professional punters make money from gambling because they win all the time, but that is actually a long way from the truth. This idea of constant winners, together with optimism bias, leads to an expectation when people sign up to tips and ratings like Champion Bets that there will be a constant flow of winners.

Losing runs

However bad runs can come along at any time and if they happen early it definitely seems to make many punters quite nervous. They will start to question the tips and some may stop following them altogether. That is a poor strategy, because losing runs are a normal part of the process that even the best punters in the world experience on a semi-regular basis. It’s natural to start questioning something when the reality is different to our expectation, but in this case it is the expectation that is the issue because consistent winners are not why or how the pros make their money.

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Professional punters

Pro punters are profitable because they can:

A) identify the true chance of a bet winning; and
B) bet on odds that are greater than what they should be.

To sum it up in just one sentence – pro punters are only ever trying to take wrong odds.

The best example is a coin flip. We all know the answer to Part A above and that is the chance of heads is 50%. The correct odds based on a 50% chance are:

Odds = 1 / chance
Odds = 1 / 0.50
Odds = $2

If there was a bookmaker that offered $2.50 on heads, that’s a great bet (Part B) and you’ll make nice money long-term on that bet. If only it was that easy!

Bet the overs

Professional punting is simply bankroll management along with this basic situation: identify the chance, then bet the overs. Knowing the true chance of a bet winning in a game of footy or horse race is the tricky part that professionals can work out better than the public.

The key word here though is chance. Despite what many average punters believe, a pro tip doesn’t mean “this tip will win”.

It means “the odds are better on this tip than what they should be” and “this tip is a better chance of winning than what the odds suggest”. That’s not as flashy or certain as we’d like but that’s the reality.

When a pro punter rates a bet a $2 chance, it’s just as likely to win as heads is to win on a coin flip (believe it or not!).

That’s because individual results are random luck. The difference is that the market might assess the pro’s tip as a $2.50 chance (40% chance) and that’s where the pro makes their money. The market says 40%, but the pro backs his judgement that it is in fact a 50% winning chance.

Long term is all that matters

One of the key differences between a regular and professional punter is the emphasis they place on individual results. That’s because we all got into punting for the thrill of a win, which is a short-term (and still great) aspect of betting but is a mindset which a lot of punters never get past.

Individual results are meaningless when profit is your goal. Individual weeks and even months are meaningless. The only important period in professional punting is the long-term.

The profit graph of a professional punter is not a steady line upwards, but more like a roller coaster and those graphs you see in finance reports. Even the best quality tips will have ups and downs and you will have periods of drawdown that will make you question your tips. The main thing is that the strategy you are following is profitable in the long run.

So next time you’re waiting for that upswing to come along, make sure you remember that profitable punting is not about constant winners….it’s really a game of chance.

Rod is the brain (and the maths) behind our consistently profitable High Low service.

By focusing on the best specials he runs a package that has exceptionally low volatility. The High Low covers both racing and sports and is one of our most popular memberships.

Download the excel results sheet here.