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Interview With A Professional Punter

Quotes from the interview

I'd say it took me twenty years to learn how to consistently break even and another five to become a regular winner

My experience over the last 20 years is that profit comes in bursts and that much of the time I'm either treading water or losing slowly

I feel that most losing punters go on losing because they never stop to actually think about what they are doing (and of course the non stop nature of the 'product' these days is designed to achieve exactly that).

Self confidence, belief, arrogance - call it what you will, but if you harbour doubts about your ability to succeed, you will fail.

I don't bet in running

The positives (of being a full time punter) are much as they always were - freedom from routine, the feeling of doing something that is beyond most people, the pleasure of turning a hobby into a living. The negatives, especially in the modern era - solitude, the hours spent in front on a computer screen and a TV, the difficulty of going back if things don't work out.

I've no idea how many people in this country now live entirely off the proceeds of gambling, but I'd guess that if you include sports betting and online poker, we're talking hundreds, possibly more than a thousand.

Don't bet 5 one day, 100 the next, don't bet 5 on the 10/1 shot and 100 on the evens favourite. Secondly be realistic - ensure that your level of staking matches your resources. If your betting bank is 1000, then you probably shouldn't be betting more than 50 per bet. If you bet a bigger percentage, you greatly increase the chances of losing the entire bank.

I'm not a fan of staking systems as such, where the amount bet is decided by the result of the previous bet (or series of bets), rather than the amount bet being based on the degree of confidence you have in that bet, which could also be called the 'value' you see in the bet.

Since I stopped being a loser have been to watch a lot, listen a little, ignore 'inside information', be cynical about hype and rely on my own judgement

I'm certain that regular breaks from betting are essential. When I started out full time in 1991, there was no Sunday racing, far fewer evening meetings and generally less racing than there is today.

Also, since like almost all professionals then, I bet on course, by only going racing three or four days per week, the workload was kept manageable.

With the volume of racing we have now, I'm quite sure that keeping mentally fresh is a big help - sit and do this seven days per week, 52 weeks of the year and you'd go stir crazy


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