So, we've whittled down the list of potential services to add to the portfolio on the basis of value for money and being psychologically suitable. The final factor to consider is the practicality of following.
I have an office job, and therefore it wouldn't be much use following a service that 30 seconds after releasing selections, causes the price of the selection to crash. No matter how profitable, it would simply be no good. I've mentioned how outstanding Equine Investments have been over the years, but this is a service I could never follow. I would be getting 6/1 on 12/1 shots, 5/4 on 3/1 selections. You get the message.
Similarly, a service like Sportyy releases tips at all times throughout the day. Unless you have the luxury of a lifestyle that allows you to spend most of your time at home by the PC with a cup of tea, reading a copy of the Racing Post (ahh..sounds like bliss), this sort of service isn't going to fit either. Yes, you can use the old Iphone or Blackberry to get bets on whilst out and about, but I'm not sure I would want to be doing this every day. So we (I) need a service that I can plan ahead with and have a fair idea as to when and how I will be able to place the bets.
At the end of all this, I have decided to join a new football service - Shaolin Betting (if I can get my Moneybookers account verified this side of Bonfire Night!). Tips, I believe, are released on weekend mornings, odds I'm told stand up well, and there aren't too many selections to follow. With a decent track record over the course of a year or so now, it sounds ideal for my needs. That's the kiss of death for that one, then.
Talking about numbers of selections, I have to admit that I'm finding my Friday nights imposed upon rather. 6.00 Football Elite, 6.30 Skeeve, 7.00 Football Investor/Strike Zone. This is a workload that would threaten to stoop the shoulders of Atlas. Throw in the fact that on a fair few Friday evenings I have to drive down to London or Shropshire, then let's just say I'm starting to review my options (or at least my wife is). However, I am well aware that I may not be feeling so inclined to make changes were things going swimmingly, which obviously at present they are not. I've made the mistake before of tinkering with things when enduring a losing run, usually by altering the staking slightly...never a clever thing to do. The sensible thing would be to continue as I am until the end of the season, and then, after the dust has settled a little, take a long hard look at the situation. As I said, that would be the sensible thing to do...
Well, when I started the blog, I was in the midst of steadily making profits. A fortnight or so on, and I'm steadily returning those profits back to whence they came. This now qualifies as a losing run. I've made it official after today's lacklustre performance. Not a worrying one yet. A losing run that is quite normal, expected, but a pain in the arse just the same. Don't like them - never have.
I don't know what has gotten into PJA towers recently. Some bug that has made the number of points staked increase massively perhaps? So far in January, I've staked approximately 50% more than I had anticipated staking, and there are still four days to go! It could be a mistake I've made in my calculations, but whatever it is, it means that just at the moment, PJA's temporary struggles are having quite an impact on my overall performance. Mind you, you know when you're luck is out when two of your selections finished 2nd to outsiders, which was the case for PJA today. Three horses placed out of five is pretty steady stuff when bearing in mind the odds of the selections - they just need a break, get a couple first past the post (as they did last Saturday), and they'll be on their merry way again I'm sure. It will happen; it's just a matter of when. Northern Monkey Punter's disappointing second half of the month also continued today with one loser from one selection, and ProBandit dropped a point too. And there we have it - no winners, and another poor day.
Thursday 27th January: Staked £161, -£95.20.
Week to date: Staked £1,175, -£390.16.
Month to date: Staked £13,441, +£79.18, roi 0.58%.
PS. I am aware of two things. One, that I haven't done a service view for a while, and two, the value I give to each point for each service is probably a bit of a mystery. In other words, you don't know what I'm staking on each service and therefore the figures may look a tad confusing at times. Losing "0.15pts" with The Sportsman, for example? I will go into this, but I want to wait until next month before doing so. This is because I will be upping the stakes (in the middle of a losing run!?! I know, I know) of a couple of services that I only joined at the beginning of this month and wanted to make sure they were suited to me before staking properly. Explaining the staking would probably fit nicely into the service views, I thought.
Tune in tomorrow for news of a spectacular breaking of the losing run, a tale of winner after winner, and the securing of profits to be dreamed of. I'm telling you, them bookies aren't going to know what's hit them!