Thursday, 8 November 2012

One of those days.

I'll refer to the title of the post a little later, but initially I want to explore further the issues I raised in yesterday's post about Form Lab Lite.

Literally two minutes after I pressed the button to release yesterday's offering to my adoring masses (I can dream!), an email from Form Lab pinged into my inbox. It was an update on the performance of the Daily Reports and also contained a download for an Advanced User Guide. It certainly provided (further) food for thought and has helped me clarify a few things about the service in my own mind.

The fact that I'm not utilising the software to anywhere near it's capacity struck me squarely between the eyes. My failure to exploit the avenues to potential profit was something I mentioned in my previous musings on the service back in August, but I now feel I rather underestimated the extent to which this was the case. Consequently, and this is a key point, I think it is completely unfair to base any conclusive evaluation of the service as a whole, merely on the black and white results of the recommendations contained within the Daily Reports.

Certainly I think FLL are conscious of their levels of customer service. Within the email was an offer of a personal call from one of their traders in an effort to help the subscriber extract the maximum from the software. Be it advice on staking, strategies, or any other aspect of what they provide, help was being offered. A cynic might suggest that this might simply be the result of recent poor performance, an effort to manage disgruntled subscribers and reduce damage to reputation, but I think such an accusation totally unjustified. I see this as nothing more than what it is - an offer of help and guidance, and for that they should be commended.

Within the main body of the email is a break down and explanation for the recent poor performance levels of the Daily Report recommendations, and I guess that this is where most interest lies for subscribers. Whilst the company acknowledges that performance has been under par recently, it believes that the underlying engine that throws up the potential bets/trades is still operating perfectly healthily, and who am I to argue? What is notable is that the headline figures show a positive roi of almost 6.5%, gained over a total of 2,150 bets - a very healthy sample size. This boosts confidence and makes me more inclined to believe that what we are currently experiencing is the dreaded 'V' word, variance. The other point to note is that as a high turnover service, a long term 5% roi figure is very profitable indeed if the bank is being turned over ten to fifteen times per season, which it quite possibly will be. This would produce ROC figures that are more than satisfactory, and as readers of this blog will know, that is a big factor as far as this gambler is concerned. This is the exact point I was making yesterday. ROI really isn't the be all and end all - bottom line cash profit is.

The FLL analysis identifies the main bodies of the football season as being consistently profitable. We are just entering this period (November to March). I hesitate to put too much emphasis on this. There might be a small risk that an element of unintentional backfitting makes one look at certain periods of time when consistent profits are made and then find a theory that provides a "logical" argument as to why these periods are more profitable than others. I'm not saying that this is what FLL have done. I'm just aware that there is a possibility of this happening, so I don't want to rely on this statistic too much.

So it sounds from all this that I'm erring on the side of continuing to back the Daily Report selections as I have been doing. However, it was when I read the Advanced User Guide that I found more clarity of thought.

The guide is written by the FLL Head Trader. His statement that he doesn't back all the Daily Report recommendations with the same stake, and that he doesn't let all trades run to expiry - ie. he will if circumstances are right trade out of a position after placing the original bet, before the conclusion of the match - really brought it home to me that my methodology is simply too crude and in fact does the FLL package no justice at all. When I add this to the fact that I still can't think of a way to place some of the bets that have to be made at one of the "high street" bookies, then I am reluctant to carry on as I have been. The way forward I think, would be to utilise Betfair, and start to look at trading some matches instead of simply backing the selections to one point level stakes. In other words, adopt a far more sophisticated approach to utilising what is undoubtedly a mass of good information. As ever, time to do this will not be easy to find. I still have a few weeks of my current subscription period remaining. I shall use it to see if I can make this work for me. If not, then I shall have to put FLL on hold for the time being, which would be a shame. However, should this turn out to be the case (and on the balance of probabilities I have to say it is more likely), it would hopefully be a temporary hiatus and FLL would be something that I could come back to when I can make sufficient time to enable me to start utilising it properly.

Yesterday's Betting

And this is where I can relate the post to it's title!

First though, may I congratulate The Market Examiner on a smashing winner, their first since their return from their two month break (Bravo Bravo - Chepstow - 8/1).

However, that was a rare ray of light on a demoralisingly gloomy day. You know things are going against you when your first horses to run are those that constitute an each way Winning Racing Tips double, and both of which fall at the last when looking the most likely winners! Of course, the second of these was irrelevant as far as the double was concerned, but it also happened to be the Winning Racing Systems (Favourites) tip!

At the other end of the betting day was The Sportsman's over 3 goals bet in the Benfica/Spartak Moscow Champions League game. How that match had only two goals, only Dennis knows! A missed penalty at 2-0, and finishing at levels of ineptitude I don't see from my U10 side, meant that ultimately the bet was a loser. Seriously, I'd have tucked a couple of them away. Blindfolded. On one leg. With Angelina Jolie putting me off by standing behind the goal and making alluring gestures to me (although I would have be told of said gestures by my teammates due to the blindfold - but as you know, the imagination is a powerful thing).

In between these two disastrous bookends to the gambling day were losers. And plenty of them.

Northern Monkey: Staked 0.25pts, -0.25pts.
The Sportsman Racing: Staked 0.5pts, -0.5pts.
Winning Racing Tips: Staked 0.4pts, -0.4pts.
Winning Racing Systems (Favs): Staked 2pts, -2pts.
The Market Examiner: Staked 1pt, +8pts.
On The Nose: Staked 0.5pts, -0.5pts.

The Sportsman: Staked 0.15pts, -0.15pts.
Service X: Staked 6pts, +3.93pts.

Fortunately, today was a bit happier, thank goodness. More on that tomoz.


  1. There are two things to say about the Form Lab performance:

    First, presumably they do know how to use their own software, and surely their daily reports are based on a full utilisation of its capabilities. If they can't get the best out of their software, how on earth are you supposed to?

    Second, this company used to be known as Bettor Logic. The software was pretty much the same back then, as were the reports. Sadly, their performance was also much the same.

    There is, of course, the opportunity to use their software in-play, but as this is almost impossible to measure impartially, I don't think they should be allowed to throw that factor into the mix.

    1. Hi SD.

      Thanks for taking the time to post. Appreciated.

      Reading the guide they sent through, it seems that they use the software to identify a whole raft of potential angles pre-match, and then the team of traders filter out those with the most potential. I think their stance is that they do get the best from the software and what we are seeing at the moment is a short term drawdown.

      You have the advantage of me re. Bettor Logic. I've heard of them but had never had any dealings with them.

      We'll see how it all works out.

      Cheers now,


  2. Why is Betfair not the solution of high st bookmakers limiting the amount you bet?


    1. Hi Jose,

      I don't need Betfair for the football - I have the Asian bookmakers for that which almost all the time have better odds available once you deduct Betfair commission from returns.

      As far as the racing is concerned, I've found that Best Odds Guaranteed makes a far bigger impact on returns that I initially thought. Obviously, you don't get BOG at Betfair.

      So far, I've not needed to find out just how much of an impact translating my horse racing betting to Betfair would have. I guess there will come a time though when I need to find out!