Before we start tonight, a quick note to say that Phil Taylor winning the European Darts Championship last night contributed nicely towards an overall profit yesterday of £206.
So here we are for the first monthly review of 2011/12.
The final figures for July are: Staked £7,255, -£58.80, roi -0.81%.
Deducting a month's fees, the running total now is -£308.80.
The figures for the racing services alone in July are: Staked £5,774, +£98.95, roi 1.71%.
So from being almost £1k down at one stage (-£975 as recently as Wednesday 27th), to get out of July with a deficit of £58 feels like an escape. No elation here though. In stark terms, the first month of the new "financial" year has not relinquished any profit. Now I know that categorising results into months is not a particularly wise move and is merely a convenient splitting of time, but still, the clock ticks inexorably on and when put into the context of the previous six months' performance, July has been another mediocre period.
Having said that, I do think that July as a whole has to be regarded with certain caveats. Primarily it is a month that sees no football betting action. Turnover is vastly reduced and therefore the likelihood of volatility is that much higher. This situation is exacerbated somewhat by the fact that two of the racing services (Chasemaster and PJA NH) are jumps specialists, and as such it is inevitable that they stake less during the middle of the flat season than they would in the middle of the National Hunt season. So yes, a month has gone past without making any money, but the turnover for July will be only a very small part of the total amount bet come 30 June, 2012. August should start to see some of the flak being picked up, and then full systems go come September.
So here are a few thoughts on each service...
ProBandit: Staked 16.416pts, -5.971pts, roi -36.37%.
Half way through the month, Paul took the decision to suspend betting activity to give him time to run a full system health check on his selection criteria. Now I don't remember a service that I've been a member of doing this. I've known services cease to give bets out as a result of a prolonged spell of poor results, but I've never known someone take a couple of weeks out to see where things might have been going wrong.
I must say, I like this approach, but I do think it comes with an inherent danger. The positives of being cautious and taking some time to analyse affairs is that if something fundamentally wrong is found with the selection criteria, then by calling a temporary halt to proceedings to work out what it might be, a considerable amount of money is saved. I know there is a lot of negative sentiment about ProBandit's performance to date in 2011, but the figures for the preceding twelve months were still very good at the beginning of July. A drawdrown of around six points this month is not exactly bank threatening either; it's not as if this review was a last ditch attempt at salvaging some last vestiges of a betting bank.
The problem comes however, if results don't pick up. Say August gets off to a poor start, and by the 12th of the month we're five points down. Where do we go then? Personally, I wouldn't have a problem with it. The total drawdown would still be only a fraction over ten points and that is only a quarter of the bank. For Paul though, I can see there being big pressure as the doomsayers on various blogs and forums declare the forthcoming end of the ProBandit world.
Fingers crossed then, that August gets off to a solid start for ProBandit. There will be some that no doubt criticise for remedial action not being taken sooner. I know Kodagira advocated the dropping of the NQ bets some time ago, and that suggestion has turned out to be remarkably prescient as one conclusion that Paul has drawn from his analysis is that the NQ bets are adding very little, if anything, to the bottom line balance figure. From this point on, there will be no NQ bets.
I'm still a big fan of ProBandit. I still see it as being one of the "core" services of the porfolio. Here's hoping that my faith will be repaid.
PJA NH: Staked 19.75pts, +3.605pts, ROI 18.25%
Really beginning to enjoy the PJA blog. It's written with a sense of humour, is insightful, and invites the reader to take a look around inside the mind of the tipster. I think Paul is to be commended for opening his service up in such a manner, and long may the blog continue.
As far as July is concerned for the service, it's been quietly successful, chipping away at the losses incurred during a torrid run in the first quarter of the year. A very healthy return on a light month for staking.
Northern Monkey: Staked 28.75pts, +6.767pts, ROI 23.53%
A month of two halves for Wayne. Got off to a stormer before results tailed off during the second half of July. Still, a very strong roi and that makes it a good month. I did notice from Wayne's end of month review that my results show a profit of four points more - give or take - than the official figures. I do remember securing longer odds than those advised on a couple of winners but Wayne must be praised for such an 'honest' approach to the recording of results.
One thing I was a little surprised by was there suddenly became a lot fewer each way bets. Most selections were win only. I've no problem with this but it does mean that a less smooth ride is perhaps to be expected. It has also meant that I didn't stake as many points as I had envisaged during a "peak" month.
The Market Examiner: Staked 77pts, -5.8pts, ROI -7.53%
No need to add to my post last week that concentrated on this service. The weekend just gone also saw much of the loss recouped too, which was welcome. Enjoying the service. 'Nuff said.
Winning Racing Tips: Staked 7pts, -0.202pts, ROI -2.88%
I sense from his emails that Paul has an intense dislike for July as a month for betting in. His July record overall is poor and he claimed himself that to get through the month with no damage done could be seen as the best outcome that could be hoped for. He also mentioned that he may take the opportunity for a week or two of holiday next July. Looking at what happened across the whole portfolio this month, there's not much to argue with him on that one.
Chasemaster: Staked 2.25pts, +6.468pts, ROI 287.4%
That ain't a bad roi!
One tip from Chasemaster rescued the month for the portfolio as a whole really. Springaway - Stratford. That's all I need to remember July 2011 for. Had a couple of other good winners though that shouldn't be forgotten, and Peter and the boys came good after what was a pretty torid start to their life as an SBC Premium service. Pressure? What pressure? They looked it in the eye and laughed in the face of it!
4PA: Staked 37pts, -15.21pts, ROI -41.11%.
I found the recent analysis of the service provided by the SBC interesting reading. A couple of long-priced Basic System bets that weren't posted as Account bets had come in (one at 40/1), and naturally, I started to think of ways of incorporating these into the way I follow the service. It may still prove to be a prudent thing to do, but I am going to delay this for a little while at least. PCB has categorically stated that his strategy moving forward will be to steer a path a little closer to that of the Basic System bets with less digression as a result of his own contacts in the racing world. With this in mind, I shall preserve the status quo for now, and continue backing the Account bets only. Time will tell on this one.
On The Nose: Staked 54.25pts, +6.766pts, ROI 12.47%.
A decent month with the last few days seeing a few long priced selections running good races to land some decent place money, without any getting past the post in first place (this happened again today). I have a feeling that this is signifying a return to form and that it is only a matter of time before some serious profit making is made. I could be wrong, but I trust my instincts.
So there we have it. It could all have been a lot worse, really. Onwards and upwards...
A fairly quiet start to the week.
PJA NH started the month nicely, their first bet an easy winner (Bathwick Man - Newton Abbott - 5/1). They had two others today, one of them finishing second (Exulto - Newton Abbott - 11/2). Had the line been literally two yards further up, it would have been a winner, so quickly was it gaining on the one that held on.
As mentioned above, On The Nose managed to get it's one selection placed for a profit (Midnight Martini - Ripon - 16/1).
No joy today for Northern Monkey (0/1), or The Market Examiner (0/3).
PJA NH: Staked 2.25pts, +1.775pts.
Northern Monkey: Staked 0.25pts, -0.25pts.
The Market Examiner: Staked 3pts, -3pts.
On The Nose: Staked 1pt, +1.5pts.
Monday August 1st: Staked £115, +£31.60.
August to date: Staked £115, +£31.60, roi 27.47%.
Running total (inc. fees): -£277.20, roi -3.76%.
Tomorrow a quick run down on the performance of On The Oche. Might be late though - it's my birthday. The big 4 0. Oh God! It really is time I started growing up.