THE NEXT BET
Sometimes we get so
caught up in the process of betting that we overlook what comes
next. Because there is always a next.
If you have a limited
punting bank - that is, money you can afford to lose without impacting
on the important things in your life - how are you going to allocate
it? It's all very well to be all systems go for, say, Southern Speed
in the Caulfield Cup, but what happens after that race. Win, lose
or draw? What comes after that bet? And the next one. And the next
one. And the next one. What comes next?
Do you suddenly have
a rush of blood to the old head - I mean, hey, you just backed a
10/1 winner in the Caulfield Cup - Mr Invincible is back - let's
go for it!! Or is your next bet exactly the same as what you had
on Southern Speed? Perhaps it's slightly more in accordance with
the added funds available? Perhaps it is less because you have just
caught up past losses and you can return to your base amount. Either
of the latter two options is a better bet than the the let's go
over the top approach over the long haul.
If you haven't already
decided what your next bet is after that next bet and how
much it is likely to be, you will find yourself making snap decisions
that inevitably will be wrong.
A staking plan is nothing
all that secretive and wonderfully brilliant. It really is just
a system of financial resource allocation that, if it works, should
be able to guide you through the ups and downs of runs of wins and
losses so that at the other end of it all, you are marginally better
off than when you started. And marginally better off is all that
you can hope to be.
All successful long
term professional punters bet to win small margins. Of that there
is NO doubt. Most try to win between 3% to 7% of their annual gross
Hey, we all hear the
stories of the $2 punter who cracks the $40,000 quaddie. You know
why we hear about them? Because on the rare occasions it
happens, the PR section at the TAB cranks up in to overdrive and
floods the radio, TV and newspapers with media releases generally
with the title "Small Punter Wins Fortune" and the air
waves are flooded by commentators speaking in glowing wonderment
at the feat.
The TAB loves it because
it is free advertising that encourages other small punters to have
a go at the same investment in the hope of winning the same amount.
Guess what? They don't.
If you don't have a
staking plan in your arsenal and you are just madly going from one
race to the next with no set approach - good luck! To have no pre-planned
idea on how you are going to bet and just trusting "the gambling
gods" to give you a lead as the day progresses is a recipe
for total disaster. What do you think is going to happen? In to
your head will pop ideas gifted to you from on high telling you
what to do? What if these all
knowing all seeing all caring (are they?) gambling gods are busy
attending to some other function or person at the time?
Seriously, you have to develop the approach that will safely (hopefully)
take you through the entire day / week/ month / year and show a
small profit at the end or your love of the punt will send you broke
if not mad - or maybe both.
Thinking beyond the
bet is merely a way of ensuring you stay at the table - that you're
there for the long haul trying to win that small percentage. Sure
- you will have great days when you win big percentages but that
will, over time, if you are consistent, return to your own long
term average which all depends on the quality of what you select
and the method you use to arrive at those selections. What you don't
want is escalating big losses that go on long enough to destroy
the bank in total and leave you outside looking in. And guess what?
The very next race after you are off the table, your selection will
salute - generally at $20 plus. That's just the way of it.
The smaller percentage
you are trying to win, the longer you get to play.
Trying to win a tiny
percentage also increases the boredom factor and this is exactly
where your self discipline kicks in. I have written elsewhere on
this site what I consider to be the truest of truisms - that good
old gambling formula: E = R = L. ( Excitement
= Risk = Losing )
If gambling on horses
is nothing but exciting to you, you need to reassess where you are
going with it all. If arriving at the selections to bet from doing
a fair amount of thoughtful analysis and not just stabbing them
with a pin or listening to the experts is your go, you may just
be on the path to make a small profit. If you enjoy the mathematics
of running a modest staking plan and putting in the time and mental
effort to do it, you may be on the path to making a slightly larger
If you want excitement,
have a lash at sky diving. Or riding the big roller coaster at Dreamworld.
Or making love in a hammock.
Think beyond the bet.
Assess the likely outcome. And then ask yourself - what comes next?
If you can't answer that very simple question, you're on the wrong
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