Well this is frustrating

The sport of kings.
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Bartlby37
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Joined: Tue Jul 05, 2022 8:02 pm

Not sure if there'll be a question in this or if I'm just venting but the horses are pissing me off.

I started trading pre-off horses back in mid June - I had a bad back injury and had some time on my hands - I was also thinking I might well need to find a way to earn some money lying on my back ;) . I've played around on betfair for years, mostly with football - a hobby really - I don't lose but I've never really made much either so I'm not entirely clueless (I don't push it because I've young kids and so when the football's on I'm often busy with them) - but that didn't stop me losing pretty consistently on the horses to begin with.

I read Goat's thread a couple of times and made some progress - Kai suggested each day noting down one's biggest error and then making changing that the next day's goal - that and a bit of screen recording made a huge difference - by the end of August I was B/E after commission (return of -0.01% on stakes) which seemed pretty good. I checked the figures in mid Sept and they were the same - win rate 50%, 30% losing and 20% scratch - average loss bigger than average win. I've heard Peter say many times that you just have to figure out how to nudge a B/E strategy a little to produce a profit - so that's what I figured was next.

I guessed the win rate would improve as I got more experience and that there wasn't an obvious way to change that. My average win was badly affected by my habit of taking a bit off when it goes my way - I rewatched a few races and realised that doing that left a huge amount on the table and my average loss was probably badly skewed by some a smaller number of bad losses (I don't go in running). These seemed like easy places to start and at first the results looked positive and then something changed - suddenly I'm behaving like I was when I started back in June - chasing prices, getting whipsawed out of positions and then jumping back in only to find I'm on the wrong side of the book again and then trading things I shouldn't trade because I want to prove to myself that I can do this - and so end up proving the exact opposite.

My reading of various forums over the years suggests that my experience isn't unique - its like the first sniff of the possibility of success has completely derailed me - I find it really frustrating and that frustration feeds the problem. So maybe I've haven't got a question exactly - but if anyone can tell me why, after taking two very slow steps forward taking two back was so quick I would love to know .

Thanks for reading
B
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ShaunWhite
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Just on goat's thread, not much use really as he ended up going with the full data/simulations route that's not even possible with BA, manual trading wasn't the route for him.

As far as the manual trading/psych stuff then I'll leave that to those who have to contend with it. Your comments aren't unusual but show the difference there is between a hobby and needing to make money. It's going to come down to those larger than average losses. It takes confidence to take losses and even losing days or weeks, possibly months and unfortunately only a solid track record will give you that. It's a catch-22.
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"I've heard Peter say many times that you just have to figure out how to nudge a B/E strategy a little to produce a profit".... :D He makes it sound easy and it might with 23yrs experience, but it's not.
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decomez6
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I find some of the recent additional tools very useful when it comes to correlation.

---What does it mean when one price is moving up then other price somewhere is moving the opposite direction ?
and yet
All prices are always correct and efficient at any given time. especially with cross matching is involved ?

I have taken all price movements from each and every selection and calculated the difference in ticks movement from the initial starting point to current price point.

-- then take all the selections that have steamed from initial price point and put them in one group called +VE
--and all other remaining selections that drifted from the initial price point into another group called -VE

THE market balance = all( +VE + -VE )
adding the two groups will allow you to see which of the groups has un upper hand and also which selection is positively or negatively affecting the market balance.

you will soon realize , just because the favorite has moved up /down number of ticks in one direction , will not necessarily guarantee that the second favorite will move the same number of ticks in the opposite direction .
BUT you can then easily visualize as other selections absorb the shockwaves as the market is finding its balance back to' 0' .
when pressure is exerted in one point of the market , it is then proportionately distributed to other parts of the market with an intensity determined by which price caused the movement vis a vis which price is to absorb the resulting tick difference away from the market balance.

below is a screen shot of one of my ladder settings .

market capture.PNG


some of the markers are tracking highest and lowest trading range, depending on when the market balance was evenly distributed between drifters and steamers.

trading set ups are determined by tops and bottoms of the above range . also help me keep a better record of how the market was behaving for future ref . through screen recording.

i keep the number of back bets matched separate from number of lay bets matched.

Please dis regard my in put if you already using markers and other tools to do the same or better.
just thought it will be useful to anyone finding it hard to use Correlation as away of making trading decisions.
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Bartlby37
Posts: 10
Joined: Tue Jul 05, 2022 8:02 pm

Thanks for the replies.

I like the look of those markers. Peter advises new traders to pick on setup and just look for that - I'm often too stupid to follow advice but have tried to simplify things as much as possible - so I'm just looking for a horse to lay and I avoid trading the favourite - I just wasn't doing very well with favourites so I cut them out - but being able to so clearly mark points on interest would be useful.

With regards the Goat thread - indeed he went full automation in a way I don't have the skills for - and I don't think I'm going to get them. But I still think it was worth reading - the first third or so is someone trying to learn to trade manually and there was lots of advise given. I mentioned a comment of Kai's because it pointed me to thinking about how to learn rather than what to learn and I think that's useful in a probabilistic environment that provides unclear feedback. The thread also illuminates the sheer bloody minded persistence that might be required to succeed and that's a useful corrective to unrealistic expectations.

Confidence and losses is certainly a catch 22 - I felt I was starting to get a little confidence but it's gone at the moment - I'm back to scratching lots more trades and missing trades because I'm second guessing myself - wondering if I'm about to do something stupid. That's the thing - in the moment something stupid can make perfect sense - I had felt like I'd started to be able to see those thoughts and disregard them but they all came back the past few days.

None of it's disastrous - I've kept the stakes very small - and traded a little today for a small profit but was super cautious. I guess one just has to go again and try and get a little further forward each time - the margins between profit and learning seem very small but getting from one to the other.... a longer journey.
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Kai
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Bartlby37 wrote:
Mon Sep 18, 2023 12:49 pm
So maybe I've haven't got a question exactly - but if anyone can tell me why, after taking two very slow steps forward taking two back was so quick I would love to know .
Well, that's psychology for you. Because these bad habit routines eventually become hardwired in our brains, so in stressful situation the easiest solution for the brain is to fall back on one of those routines.

One of the better metaphores I heard about this subject : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HCfIXvQ6fxE&t=39s

Anyway, in other words the longer you use a routine the harder it is to break that habit, and when you progress faster you don't tend to develop "bad habits".

But... the tricky bit is that science says our brain doesn't distinguish between good and bad habits, apparently it takes up to 2 months to break a habit.
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Kai
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Bartlby37 wrote:
Mon Sep 18, 2023 6:55 pm
I'm just looking for a horse to lay and I avoid trading the favourite
Nothing wrong if you want to use the fav as an "indicator" of sorts but trading favs overall in all markets is the fastest way to understand that market IMHO
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Derek27
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Location: UK

When I started predominantly trading football I had to learn to cope with frustration all over again. I get a mixture of lucrative runs, nil-nil draws where I end up with nothing, and a few very early goals where I'm caught with my pants down - they all seem to come along in bundles!

The only real solution is to forget about day-to-day profits and look at how you're doing on a rolling fortnight or month.
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Kai
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Bartlby37 wrote:
Mon Sep 18, 2023 6:55 pm
With regards the Goat thread
It's a good thread, for many reasons. For me mostly because fear of public humiliation is arguably the biggest fear for many, and it goes to show that if you get over that fear you can reap some benefits. So credit to goat68 for that.

Whether it was semi intentional or not, if you make a giant trading diary of sorts where you open up about your failures and frustrations then people naturally try and help, and you would assume the biggest difference maker was whatever concrete automation guidance he received privately from people.

So you obviously wouldn't expect to find all pieces to that particular puzzle inside the thread itself.
Bartlby37
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Joined: Tue Jul 05, 2022 8:02 pm

Thanks for the further replies
but trading favs overall in all markets is the fastest way to understand that market IMHO
Would you elaborate - I've stayed away - they seem noisier to me - maybe in a maiden there's something really clear happening otherwise they seem hard to read - maybe that's why there's more learning to be had there.

I've been trying to avoid the cultivation of bad habits - its one of the reasons I'm suspicious of the 10,000 markets/hours idea - it really depends what you do with those markets/hours and I think that's what bothered me so much the back end of last week and over the weekend - those habits I thought I'd been training myself out of all came back. I read Daniel Goleman's 'Focus' recently and that was really interesting/helpful so maybe I should revisit that.

I do find it hard not to look at the short term P&L - even though I know its a poor indicator of anything and very likely to lead me astray - Maybe what changed last week was for the first time since I started I began thinking about my goals in financial terms - not in any specific way - simply I seemed to be B/E after commission which seemed OK and so I started thinking about pushing that - up until this point I'd been thinking about how to improve my trading, removing obvious errors, understanding what I was seeing in the market better etc.

Spent a few hours this afternoon trying to trade but was behind the market all the time or was scratching positions because things didn't seem to be unfolding as I hoped - Its like beginning all over again.
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Kai
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Bartlby37 wrote:
Tue Sep 19, 2023 4:37 pm
but trading favs overall in all markets is the fastest way to understand that market IMHO
Would you elaborate - I've stayed away - they seem noisier to me - maybe in a maiden there's something really clear happening otherwise they seem hard to read - maybe that's why there's more learning to be had there.
Not my niche but it's obviously a tradable market, if you focus more on the bigger trend then you should have an edge over those that get lost in the market noise.

If the fav has the biggest impact on the market then you could say he more or less controls the market, instead of ignoring the fav I would pay more attention to how his price moves between key price points.
Bartlby37
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Joined: Tue Jul 05, 2022 8:02 pm

Thanks Kai - Spent some time yesterday just trying to trade favourites - but mostly just watching - I'm thinking what I actually need to do is watch a slowed down recording - a lot of the favourites I watched yesterday seemed to be xpanding their traded range as post time got closer but still trading in a range and the turning points happened so fast - the one I layed and which did carry on drifting got stuck for a while and so I scratched it - playing for pennies and for what I can learn at this point.

I'm still avoiding being in the market around 2 mins as well - I read this https://www.ft.com/content/402955aa-21f ... 9e7f19a617 this morning - its amazing much of the money on American Race tracks in now from well capitalised funds using big data etc and I wonder if that 2 minute madness is suggestive of something similar - it always looks to me like someone pushing the price about to get people stuck on the wrong side of the book - but what do I know - except to try and avoid that mess.
Michael5482
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Bartlby37 wrote:
Tue Sep 19, 2023 4:37 pm
Thanks for the further replies
but trading favs overall in all markets is the fastest way to understand that market IMHO
Would you elaborate - I've stayed away - they seem noisier to me - maybe in a maiden there's something really clear happening otherwise they seem hard to read - maybe that's why there's more learning to be had there.

I've been trying to avoid the cultivation of bad habits - its one of the reasons I'm suspicious of the 10,000 markets/hours idea - it really depends what you do with those markets/hours and I think that's what bothered me so much the back end of last week and over the weekend - those habits I thought I'd been training myself out of all came back. I read Daniel Goleman's 'Focus' recently and that was really interesting/helpful so maybe I should revisit that.

I do find it hard not to look at the short term P&L - even though I know its a poor indicator of anything and very likely to lead me astray - Maybe what changed last week was for the first time since I started I began thinking about my goals in financial terms - not in any specific way - simply I seemed to be B/E after commission which seemed OK and so I started thinking about pushing that - up until this point I'd been thinking about how to improve my trading, removing obvious errors, understanding what I was seeing in the market better etc.

Spent a few hours this afternoon trying to trade but was behind the market all the time or was scratching positions because things didn't seem to be unfolding as I hoped - Its like beginning all over again.
Why don't you look for some of the potential reasons markets move. Maybe look to change your approach slightly and look for fundamental reasons why and use technical analysis to approve or disprove the fundamental reasoning.

So for example last week Frankie had a choice of riding Gregory & Arrest in the St Ledger, he chose Arrest on Thursday/Friday morning (can't remember which one) So you could of seen (even anticipated the news on the ground conditions), checked the market seen some back money for Arrest and jumped on by using Frankie's choice as the fundamental reason and the back money as an indicator to enter a trade. Granted most would of backed when they seen Frankies choice as it was probably a bit of an easy one but it's something to think about.

Another one the Racing League when the team captains live on ITV play the jokers indicating they think the horse may have an excellent chance of winning more people are likely to back it than lay it.

Change brings opportunity and in racing that could be anything like ground change, weather, jockey change, horse/trainer form, trainer/jockey comments, horse behavior etc etc

Your never going to get it right or trade perfectly every time you just want a small piece of the action. Good place to start IMO for any sport.
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Kai
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Bartlby37 wrote:
Thu Sep 21, 2023 9:27 am
Thanks Kai - Spent some time yesterday just trying to trade favourites - but mostly just watching - I'm thinking what I actually need to do is watch a slowed down recording - a lot of the favourites I watched yesterday seemed to be xpanding their traded range as post time got closer but still trading in a range and the turning points happened so fast - the one I layed and which did carry on drifting got stuck for a while and so I scratched it - playing for pennies and for what I can learn at this point.
Yeah, tbh I wish the market was more liquid, and "noisier" too. But I like the IP side of it, even though it's frowned upon.

Although you don't need to catch big moves on a fav, one pricepoint to another is enough, like 2.25 => 2.0, or any other price combination like that, if you get more than one pricepoint you've probably done well.

It's really not a bad idea to observe a market sometimes, without the emotional burden of having a position open, but when trading it's also vital to find a staking balance where you feel comfortable and ideally aren't too fussed about losing that one. Because you ultimately want to be able to focus on reading the market itself, whichever part of it you can read, you don't want to end up trading your own emotions, lol, that's an absolute nightmare.
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ShaunWhite
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Kai wrote:
Thu Sep 21, 2023 4:54 pm

Although you don't need to catch big moves on a fav, one pricepoint to another is enough, like 2.25 => 2.0, or any other price combination like that, if you get more than one pricepoint you've probably done well.
That reminded me about something I looked at a few years ago. From a sample of a few thousand races, each col in the chart represents how many seconds anything was that price. I think I was manually trading at the time and curious about how prices lingered around certain points (scalpable area) but seemed to skip past others (not scalpable area).

It was interesting, prices tend to hang around just above price break points, but not just below them. In fact prices seem to be almost allergic to that (keyprice-1) slot. I thought it was interesting anyway to put some numbers to what I thought was going on. If I trade manually at all these days it's just nicking a tick or two for fivers as prices bounce around just above key prices, I've remebered now how I got into that habit. :)
Screenshot_5.jpg
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Kai
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ShaunWhite wrote:
Thu Sep 21, 2023 5:39 pm
Kai wrote:
Thu Sep 21, 2023 4:54 pm

Although you don't need to catch big moves on a fav, one pricepoint to another is enough, like 2.25 => 2.0, or any other price combination like that, if you get more than one pricepoint you've probably done well.
That reminded me about something I looked at a few years ago. From a sample of a few thousand races, each col in the chart represents how many seconds anything was that price. I think I was manually trading at the time and curious about how prices lingered around certain points (scalpable area) but seemed to skip past others (not scalpable area).

It was interesting, prices tend to hang around just above price break points, but not just below them. In fact prices seem to be almost allergic to that (keyprice-1) slot. I thought it was interesting anyway to put some numbers to what I thought was going on. If I trade manually at all these days it's just nicking a tick or two for fivers as prices bounce around just above key prices, I've remebered now how I got into that habit. :)

Screenshot_5.jpg
Those ticks do fold fast :) One of the very first things I learned with scalping was that the ticks just below a crossover price weren't worth much on their own.

But the ticks just above Image
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