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Old 09-20-2010, 07:22 PM   #1
Learned Hand35
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Newbie learning curve

Teddy's thread got me thinking.

For you veterans of the game, what was the learning curve for you regarding achieving positive ROI or at least negative ROI you could live with until you got back into the black in the next time frame.

My goal after my first year, a realistic one I hoped, was to cut my negative ROI in half. So far this year I have cut it down by a third. My goal was to show my first positive ROI by year four. Don't know if that is going to happen.

Thoughts, experiences, advice?
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Old 09-20-2010, 08:34 PM   #2
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It depends on what a newbie is doing, in my opinion.

If they are reading old-time handicapping books and are getting indoctrinated that way, I think it is tough to move from 0.80 to 0.90 in a year. Getting to 1.00 is tough for everyone - newbie or not.

If they are trying to look for edges that others are not from the beginning, and concentrate on gambling their money not just betting it, I think a newbie can do fine at 0.95 pretty quickly.

IMO, to do that, they would need (for example) an ADW that rebates, or be able to play Betfair, figures like CJ's and work on them, or handicapping software, horse behavior in the post parade and some knowledge of and an ability to know how to bet, when to bet and how to bet size.

Just my opinion. But I think the learning curve is much shorter if you try and do something that others are not doing from day one, and concentrate on that the best you can with sound gambling principles.

Last edited by DeanT; 09-20-2010 at 08:36 PM.
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Old 09-20-2010, 10:35 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Learned Hand35
Teddy's thread got me thinking.

For you veterans of the game, what was the learning curve for you regarding achieving positive ROI or at least negative ROI you could live with until you got back into the black in the next time frame.

My goal after my first year, a realistic one I hoped, was to cut my negative ROI in half. So far this year I have cut it down by a third. My goal was to show my first positive ROI by year four. Don't know if that is going to happen.

Thoughts, experiences, advice?
It largely depends on how much time you have to dedicate to this game. Learning how to play the game, and then handicapping the races in a comprehensive manner, are time consuming activities. As with any other hobby, the more time you dedicate to it, the quicker you will learn.

Certain handicapping books are a must, if you want to take the "fast track" to learning about this game. The bad thing is that even veteran horseplayers do not often agree on which are the most beneficial handicapping books out there.

For what it's worth, here is my list...to be read in the order given:

1. ) HANDICAPPING 101...by Brad Free...OR,
1A) RECREATIONAL HANDICAPPING...by James Quinn

2. ) THE WINNING HORSEPLAYER...by Andrew Beyer

3. ) PACE MAKES THE RACE...by Tom Hambleton and Dick Schmidt (the large softcover one). This book also offers some great money management and self-discipline advice.

Last edited by thaskalos; 09-20-2010 at 10:47 PM.
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Old 09-21-2010, 12:15 AM   #4
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I tell everyone and anyone who will listen: FORGET ABOUT LEARNING TO HANDICAP, learn how to gamble first.

When you understand value and overlays, then come back and learn the easier task of finding contenders.
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Old 09-21-2010, 12:25 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by 46zilzal
I tell everyone and anyone who will listen: FORGET ABOUT LEARNING TO HANDICAP, learn how to gamble first.

When you understand value and overlays, then come back and learn the easier task of finding contenders.
Don't you have to learn to handicap, before you can spot value and overlays?

Why can't you learn handicapping first...and then learn how to gamble?
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Old 09-21-2010, 12:27 AM   #6
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I'm still on the curve!
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Old 09-21-2010, 12:27 AM   #7
46zilzal
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thaskalos
Don't you have to learn to handicap, before you can spot value and overlays?
No learn odds lines via a myriad of other sports betting until it is 2nd nature
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Old 09-21-2010, 01:15 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Learned Hand35
Teddy's thread got me thinking.

For you veterans of the game, what was the learning curve for you regarding achieving positive ROI or at least negative ROI you could live with until you got back into the black in the next time frame.

My goal after my first year, a realistic one I hoped, was to cut my negative ROI in half. So far this year I have cut it down by a third. My goal was to show my first positive ROI by year four. Don't know if that is going to happen.

Thoughts, experiences, advice?
10,000 hours for handicapping. Handicap every card every day. Watch the replays. Before you know it, you'll look at a card and start to see things you never saw before. You'll see how a race will develop and likely winners. You'll be able to spot bad favorites in an instant and live longshots.

Once you do that, then you need to learn how to gamble. That's twice as hard.
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Old 09-21-2010, 01:42 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 46zilzal
No learn odds lines via a myriad of other sports betting until it is 2nd nature
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Old 09-21-2010, 07:04 AM   #10
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Quote:
My goal after my first year, a realistic one I hoped, was to cut my negative ROI in half. So far this year I have cut it down by a third. My goal was to show my first positive ROI by year four. Don't know if that is going to happen.

I can only go by what you have written so don't take this wrong way.


Stop betting and do more reading would be my advice as it seems you need to gain more knowledge.
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Old 09-21-2010, 07:14 AM   #11
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Bigmack I agree "Duh"
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Old 09-21-2010, 07:32 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Learned Hand35
Teddy's thread got me thinking.

For you veterans of the game, what was the learning curve for you regarding achieving positive ROI or at least negative ROI you could live with until you got back into the black in the next time frame.

My goal after my first year, a realistic one I hoped, was to cut my negative ROI in half. So far this year I have cut it down by a third. My goal was to show my first positive ROI by year four. Don't know if that is going to happen.

Thoughts, experiences, advice?
Quit before you get hooked. If you are smart enough to beat this game, you will make a lot more, a heck of lot more money some place else and you will be a lot happier. I will say this. Nobody I know (or even heard of) who makes any real money at this game wasn't positive almost at immedately. I never heard of any one becoming positive after 4 years of losing.
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Old 09-21-2010, 08:08 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Robert Goren
Quit before you get hooked. If you are smart enough to beat this game, you will make a lot more, a heck of lot more money some place else and you will be a lot happier. I will say this. Nobody I know (or even heard of) who makes any real money at this game wasn't positive almost at immedately. I never heard of any one becoming positive after 4 years of losing.


You didn't learn to write like this in a couple of months or years. Why should beating the Great Game be any different.
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Old 09-21-2010, 10:05 AM   #14
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Find a mentor. Years of practicing by yourself is a brute force way of doing this that may never produce fruit.

Consider an sport... How many PGA players do you suppose never took a lesson from anyone? Almost all of them were taught, often at a young age, how to play.

Baseball? Although Little League coaches are famously under-equipped, they provide a beginning level of fundamentals which are then strengthened by coaches at the high school and college levels.

If you want to compete on a level that allows you to win consistently, get some help. Very few people reach their potential all by themselves.


Regards,
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Old 09-21-2010, 10:25 AM   #15
Robert Goren
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave Schwartz
Find a mentor. Years of practicing by yourself is a brute force way of doing this that may never produce fruit.

Consider an sport... How many PGA players do you suppose never took a lesson from anyone? Almost all of them were taught, often at a young age, how to play.

Baseball? Although Little League coaches are famously under-equipped, they provide a beginning level of fundamentals which are then strengthened by coaches at the high school and college levels.

If you want to compete on a level that allows you to win consistently, get some help. Very few people reach their potential all by themselves.


Regards,
Dave Schwartz
Betting horses has one thing in common with the PGA. Most people who take up golf do not have innate ability to play professional. The same is true of betting horses. The idea that a losing horse player is just one book away from becoming a winning horse player is absurb.
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Some day in the not too distant future, horse players will betting on computer generated races over the net. Race tracks will become casinos and shopping centers. And some crooner will be belting out "there used to be a race track here".

Last edited by Robert Goren; 09-21-2010 at 10:26 AM.
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