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Old 09-09-2009, 12:56 PM   #76
speculus
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Quote:
Originally Posted by markgoldie
This is a favorite subject of mine. I agree with what you say in your post and since my post was rather long and touched on so many different subjects, I was less than precise.

When it comes to handicapping horses, the exercise is fundamentally mathematical. Why? Because we are seeking to interpret the numbers that are provided in the past performances. (And I realize I am slighting those who handicap purely by astrology, appearance, smell, or whatever else).

Digesting all the numbers leads us to the strength of the individual horse. This strength is a mathematical function of some combination of the numbers which comprise his past performance. Whether or not we think of it as a number is irrelevant because any strength comparison can be boiled down to a number (such as a percentage difference). By the way, this is why figs and numbers like Bris' Prime Power are so popular since they seek to boil a lot of complicated numbers down to one. This is what the brain seeks- clarity from chaos.

Now. When most handicappers are confronted with a variable which they consider important, they form a mental impression. For example, let's say that a player relies on Beyer figs to give him an ballpark idea of the horse's ability. But they see some things about the horse which are important and are not incorporated in the Beyer number. Let's say there's a favorable jockey switch, the horse is adding blinkers, he's 75 days from his last race, and he's running on dirt although he seems to be better on grass. What does the mind do with this information? Well, the usual is that an overall impression, either positive or negative is derived from this information. It then must be applied to the raw reckoning of the horse's basic strength which was provided by the Beyer number. Even if the handicapper does not write down a new, adjusted number, that's what the mind is attempting to do. Now. Multiply this by all the horses in the race who have their own extraneous plusses and minuses, and I think you can see how the mind is not going to arrive at something very accurate. Worse, when a subsequent race presents itself, there will be no guarantee at all that the mind applies the extraneous variables in any sort of consistent way.

So I completely agree with you that the mind fails in this attempt and as you say, needs help because it is not a purely mathematical machine. But my point is, with regards to this problem, it needs to be.

The more contentious question coming from the above example is whether or not the extraneous variables can be incorporated by means of a number. I say yes and the simplest way to prove it is the following: Since the problem is mathematical, as long as the mind recognizes that a variable is important, it is already seeking (in its own way) to put a mathematical value on it. I wrote on another post that when one person is describing something quantifiable to another, they use phrases like: somewhat, pretty much, not too much, very, not very, a whole lot, a tad, a bit, etc., etc. Often, the frustrated listener says, "Well on a scale of 1-10, what would you say?"

So this was my point. The mind is seeking a numerical-application number to a numerical problem and when it applies the answer, that answer is numerical in nature and effect, even if it is not thought of as a specific number by the mind. But, since it's nature is clearly numerical, it can always be expressed numerically. This, I feel is inarguable. Those that argue the reverse are doing so because they can't envision how such a number could be accurately found or how it could be incorporated close to post time. But all these variables can be quantified and through data mining, far more accurately than the mind's anecdotal impressions. And with the speed of computers, they can be incorporated very quickly.
Very well put, MG. Thanks. I agree 100%.
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Old 09-09-2009, 03:18 PM   #77
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OEX, please feel free to be my guest at TUP if you're out this way in the winter. I'm at Turf Paradise almost everyday. BTW, not only do I believe that inflation will come roaring back, I believe it's already here.

Continued success & be well!
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Old 09-09-2009, 05:20 PM   #78
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HI Cratos!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cratos
If you going to play this game to pay the mortgage (i.e., become a professional player) you must in my opinion decide on what type of gambler you are. According to Kenneth Arrow, the Nobel Prize winning economist who argues in his theorem on individual risk that there are three (3) types of risk: (a) Risk-Preferred, (b) Risk-Against, and (c) Risk-Neutral.

I bring this up because horseracing in terms of making money is about risk and if you don’t know where you fall on the risk continuum, you will probably not be a successful horseracing gambler no matter how good of handicapper that you are.

Once you have an understanding of your gambling risk profile you need to ask yourself if you have the discipline to control it. Opportunity in horse betting is rare and it doesn’t make any difference if it is flat win betting (my choice) or exotic betting, you must have the discipline to seize the opportunity.

You must also have patience and a good work ethic. That is you must be able to wait for that “rare opportunity” and work hard to find it.

If you have met the aforementioned criteria you must have a bankroll that is consistent with your goal of revenue earning. Yes, I understand that a $2.00 bettor can hit a boxcar exotic and be financially set for a long time, but the odds of that happening is very long; synonymous to hitting the lottery jackpot.

Another suggestion is become a loner. Many bettors lose because they “bet by committee.” This is okay if you and a group of friends go the track to enjoy the sport as a spectator and lay a few wooden nickels for fun. But if the mortgage, car payment, and all other financial liabilities are dependent on your winnings; then you must put in the effort and task to win as you would do with any other job.

Someone mentioned in one of the other posts in this thread that the bettor should wager at the larger tracks. I don’t disagree with this because the mutuel pools are larger, but with ITW and OTB wagering you don’t have to be physically at the big racetracks. However two of the best wagering venues are the KY Derby and the Breeders’ Cup races.
I am risk-preferred baby

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Old 09-09-2009, 05:49 PM   #79
xtb
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Originally Posted by Partsnut
For those that have an interest.
Please click on the following link to view my post:
http://wp.me/ppTmJ-1p

I'm curious, what makes you think you're qualified to give advice about something you are unable to do? Isn't your day job selling parts? And aren't you past retirement age?
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Old 09-09-2009, 11:08 PM   #80
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Wink

Quote:
Originally Posted by markgoldie
This is a favorite subject of mine. I agree with what you say in your post and since my post was rather long and touched on so many different subjects, I was less than precise.

When it comes to handicapping horses, the exercise is fundamentally mathematical. Why? Because we are seeking to interpret the numbers that are provided in the past performances. (And I realize I am slighting those who handicap purely by astrology, appearance, smell, or whatever else).

Digesting all the numbers leads us to the strength of the individual horse. This strength is a mathematical function of some combination of the numbers which comprise his past performance. Whether or not we think of it as a number is irrelevant because any strength comparison can be boiled down to a number (such as a percentage difference). By the way, this is why figs and numbers like Bris' Prime Power are so popular since they seek to boil a lot of complicated numbers down to one. This is what the brain seeks- clarity from chaos.

Now. When most handicappers are confronted with a variable which they consider important, they form a mental impression. For example, let's say that a player relies on Beyer figs to give him an ballpark idea of the horse's ability. But they see some things about the horse which are important and are not incorporated in the Beyer number. Let's say there's a favorable jockey switch, the horse is adding blinkers, he's 75 days from his last race, and he's running on dirt although he seems to be better on grass. What does the mind do with this information? Well, the usual is that an overall impression, either positive or negative is derived from this information. It then must be applied to the raw reckoning of the horse's basic strength which was provided by the Beyer number. Even if the handicapper does not write down a new, adjusted number, that's what the mind is attempting to do. Now. Multiply this by all the horses in the race who have their own extraneous plusses and minuses, and I think you can see how the mind is not going to arrive at something very accurate. Worse, when a subsequent race presents itself, there will be no guarantee at all that the mind applies the extraneous variables in any sort of consistent way.

So I completely agree with you that the mind fails in this attempt and as you say, needs help because it is not a purely mathematical machine. But my point is, with regards to this problem, it needs to be.

The more contentious question coming from the above example is whether or not the extraneous variables can be incorporated by means of a number. I say yes and the simplest way to prove it is the following: Since the problem is mathematical, as long as the mind recognizes that a variable is important, it is already seeking (in its own way) to put a mathematical value on it. I wrote on another post that when one person is describing something quantifiable to another, they use phrases like: somewhat, pretty much, not too much, very, not very, a whole lot, a tad, a bit, etc., etc. Often, the frustrated listener says, "Well on a scale of 1-10, what would you say?"

So this was my point. The mind is seeking a numerical-application number to a numerical problem and when it applies the answer, that answer is numerical in nature and effect, even if it is not thought of as a specific number by the mind. But, since it's nature is clearly numerical, it can always be expressed numerically. This, I feel is inarguable. Those that argue the reverse are doing so because they can't envision how such a number could be accurately found or how it could be incorporated close to post time. But all these variables can be quantified and through data mining, far more accurately than the mind's anecdotal impressions. And with the speed of computers, they can be incorporated very quickly.
Beautiful beautiful,Mark you are the Descartes of handicapping.

Last edited by Hank; 09-09-2009 at 11:09 PM.
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Old 09-10-2009, 08:14 AM   #81
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Originally Posted by proximity
didn't mean to come off as being critical of your game. given your history of success, you'd probably be fine with about a $50,000 bankroll and a decent rebate. i just don't see the consistency in gambling that others do...... and to me that's at least part of what this "making a living" stuff implies....
Is this really enough?

From my own perspective, I'd have to pull about 2.5K a month (30k a yr) just for living expenses and that doesn't include the health insurance policy I'd have to buy to replace the employer based one I have now, or the ~15% of my income that I save. And let's not forget that you do have an obligation to pay taxes on your winnings.
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Old 09-10-2009, 09:35 AM   #82
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Originally Posted by badcompany
Is this really enough?
Well, let's use some very conservative estimates. Let's say you're betting one half of one percent of your bankroll per race... and let's say you bet 20 races a day on average. On saturdays in August it might be way more, and on tuesdays in January it might be less, but like I said, let's be conservative. So, with a $50k bankroll, you'd be churning $5k a day. At that level of annual play, you'd probably be able to get 10% in rebates, so in rebates alone, you'd be pulling in over $180k a year, which is far above the threshhold you've set.
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Old 09-10-2009, 12:50 PM   #83
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Originally Posted by ryesteve
Well, let's use some very conservative estimates. Let's say you're betting one half of one percent of your bankroll per race... and let's say you bet 20 races a day on average. On saturdays in August it might be way more, and on tuesdays in January it might be less, but like I said, let's be conservative. So, with a $50k bankroll, you'd be churning $5k a day. At that level of annual play, you'd probably be able to get 10% in rebates, so in rebates alone, you'd be pulling in over $180k a year, which is far above the threshhold you've set.
You could also be broke in a month.
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Old 09-10-2009, 01:02 PM   #84
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Originally Posted by badcompany
You could also be broke in a month.
If you're betting .005 of your bankroll, and you go broke in a month, you're obviously barking up the wrong tree, so discussions of bankroll sizing are irrelevant.
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Old 09-10-2009, 01:32 PM   #85
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Originally Posted by ryesteve
If you're betting .005 of your bankroll, and you go broke in a month, you're obviously barking up the wrong tree, so discussions of bankroll sizing are irrelevant.
Maybe my math is wrong.

One half of one percent or 1/200 of your bankroll, 50K, is $250. Betting 20 races a day would mean you stand to lose a maximum of 5k or 10% of your roll in a single day. Under those conditions, is it so hard to go broke in short order, especially if you bet gimmicks with a low hit percentage?

Am I miscalculating, here?
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Last edited by badcompany; 09-10-2009 at 01:37 PM.
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Old 09-10-2009, 02:03 PM   #86
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Originally Posted by badcompany
gimmicks with a low hit percentage?

Am I miscalculating, here?
No, you're adding a new variable to the equation. If we're talking about low percentage wagers, then .005 is too aggressive. I may be wrong, but I don't think many pros operating a low percentage strategy that is characterized by extended runouts with large hits every once in a while.
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Old 09-10-2009, 02:08 PM   #87
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If you started with 50k and bet 150k a month and lost it all, even if you bet exotics, I would think you are the unluckiest dude in the land.
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Old 09-10-2009, 02:29 PM   #88
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Originally Posted by DeanT
If you started with 50k and bet 150k a month and lost it all, even if you bet exotics, I would think you are the unluckiest dude in the land.
We're talking about your livelihood, here. You have to take into account doomsday scenarios. Whether it's a month or a year is irrelevant. What would you do if you did go broke? Where would you get another 50k? The median American household income is ~45k a year before taxes, and, if you could get that money so easily why would you risk it on something as tenuous as betting horses?

This is why you need the "naysayers" in these threads, because the rose-colored-glasses-guys never ask the tough questions and gloss over the inconvenient truths.
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Old 09-10-2009, 02:35 PM   #89
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This is why you need the "naysayers" in these threads, because the rose-colored-glasses-guys never ask the tough questions and gloss over the inconvenient truths.
What are you talking about? Your question didn't start out, "Can one earn a living at this?". You were asking if $50,000 was a large enough starting bankroll. If the question has turned to bankroll sizing, I think we need to presuppose that the handicapper in question knows what he's doing. Losing your entire bankroll in one month is NOT a "doomsday scenario" for this person; it's evidence that he is a handicapper who does NOT know what he's doing, which renders all discussion of bankroll-sizing moot. The only thing a larger bankroll would afford THAT player is the opportunity to lose even more money.
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Old 09-10-2009, 02:43 PM   #90
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What are you talking about? Your question didn't start out, "Can one earn a living at this?".
No, that's just the topic of the thread. My question is an extension of that topic.

IMO, 50k isn't nearly enough, especially in your scenario in which you can lose 10% of your bankroll in a single day. I don't care how great of a handicapper you are, you will have nasty losing streaks that make you want to pull your hair out.
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