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A Letter About Favourites

Good morning Peter,
Just a thought from an old man,
Every winner under the average dividend would in effect lower the average dividend so, would that mean that if you backed every favourite over the average dividend you would have a better chance to improve your chance to finish in front? Could your whiz bang computor system easily test it out? Or am I being too simplistic and I should get back on my medication?

Well that's an interesting thought Bob so leave the medication alone for the time being.

Let's look at the realities. Between November 14, 2014 and December 14, 2014 there were 1490 races. 505 of them were won by the favourite or 33.9% - pretty much the figure you would expect.

The average dividend was $2.71 for a win and $1.45 for a place (placed 63.2% of the time).

If you had backed all of them at level stakes the LOSS on turnover for a win was 8.1% and 8.2% for a place.

So let's be arbitrary and only back favourites that are better than, say, $3, and run the analysis again.

Using this criteria the results are 661 races with a reduced strike rate for the win of 26.6% but at level stakes the LOSS on turnover is just 1.6%. Ah, you say, getting better!

By far and away the category in which these favourites performed worst of all was in races where the overall prize money was less than $11000 (lower class races) so if you used this as your only other filter (e.g. made it a two rule system) the results would be as follows:

590 races with 170 winners at an average dividend of $3.69, a strike rate of 28.8% and actually a PROFIT on turnover at level stakes of 6.3%.

** Note well - these figures are based on NSW TAB dividends - you would almost certainly do better on Betfair.

Holy smokes - it's nirvana time. Just to prove the theory let's run the test for the entire year December 14, 2013 and December 14, 2014 just before we buy the block of units at the Gold Coast (though I can't really imagine why you'd want to be living there!), put our feet up, never work again and spend our time watching the tide come in and out and having continual bets........

For the last 12 months then (cue trumpets sounding): 6937 races with 1681 winners at a strike rate of 24.2% and (oh dear oh dear) another LOSS on turnover at level stakes of 10.5%. The nett return at level stakes on the NSW TAB was 6205.60 units.

I don't think even Betfair would save you there.

So the overall conclusions? Well, it works some months but not all months. Some months are horrendous. Is there a way of separating out these bad months. Not from what I can see.

Are there further easy to implement restrictions that would make it work? Not that I can see that will pick up the required 700 odd units.

By the way, the bottom price of $3 in this analysis is not really the issue either. It didn't matter what the price band, overall loss was still the story. The least damaging price band was $4 to $4.90 where the level stakes loss was around 7%.

Good thought though Bob and it gave me something to do in the wee small hours of this morning. But we can't retire to riches and grandeur yet!

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