Sunday, April 24, 2011


Pretty low-key week on the gambling front, Mondays game was rain affected and Tuesdays was completely rained off, Wednesday the first game was 1.06 SP so I got off to a slowish start with little opportunities and had this horrible feeling of "wanting to win," its hard to explain, obviously I want to win all the time - but not in the sense of going looking for something as opposed to being relaxed, having patience and letting things come naturally. Its the mindset really, I had a good WC and a good start to the IPL, probably a hungry greedy feeling is the best way of explaining it?

The last losing week was the 23rd of January (although there have been one or two level weeks), I was probably just itchy to keep winning - I could just feel it you know wanting to bet bigger or something. Sure enough it was a struggle to be like 'normal' and had a relatively small losing week -€90, I made an effort to curb the "bet and win" feeling and become more relaxed Friday and the weekend but just didnt have the touch. Its so easy to let the markets run away with you, incredibly fast moving and you forget that you have nearly 3 hours to trade and the idea is to watch most of it and bet on a small amount, pick spots and wait, I tended to dive in most of this week.

But anyway the show rolls on. Nando Torres has scored for Chelsea and the world hasnt ended? Dublin were 8 points ahead in the league final today and bottled it (har har har har!), some things never change.. were not long from the Championship now, although I was reading Kildare only scored 4 or 5 points in a whole game, we'll wait and see, we could be shite. Life could always be worse though I could be an Arsenal fan.

Speaking of kickball, I came across this story during the week, IMO it is immense..

Manchester City striker Mario Balotelli shocked diners at a posh city centre restaurant by taunting Wayne Rooney hooker Jenny Thompson, it has been claimed.

The bib-averse Italian is said to have shouted "Rooney, Rooney" across the floor at exclusive San Carlo - then blown a raspberry in the face of her companion when he complained.

Property developer Sam Birch says Balotelli then asked him to come outside.

He said: "He tied to grab my arm before squaring up. Our foreheads were touching and I wasn't going to back down. Then he swore at me in Italian.

"I think he is unhinged."

Imagine the face on her, "Rooney, Rooney!" HA! I know hes a bit of a tosser but he clearly doesnt give a fuck so whats the point even moaning about him. I found this bit on him from Google too..

When he wrote off his sports car in Manchester shortly after arriving in the city last year, attendant police officers searched him and discovered £5,000 in cash hanging out of his back pocket. Asked why he was carrying such a sum, Balotelli shrugged and said: "Because I am rich."

What a legend, I found this picture too, theres about six people around him shouting, he just looks so calm..

Obviously if you want him to do something on a football pitch with money on it hes highly annoying, but he doesnt give a fuck.

I threw out the idea of going to Hamburg for the Haye-Klitschko for a brief while this week but jesus it looks expensive enough for staying in Europe - I thought it'd be a bit cheaper considering Germany own Ireland now you know. €200 per person for flights, it only comes down a tenner if you go four days so might as well go seven, add tickets and hotels all seem to be €100+ a night. I didnt think it'd be that much, I'll stay at home and shout at the TV.

Friday, April 22, 2011


Whether you agree/disagree with banning the whip - whatever side you lie on - it still seems a joke to me why one track can change the rules from all the other tracks.

There cannot really be one rule for one track and another rule for a different track. But anyway, anyone with any bit of sense knows the world has gone mad already, every day I read the news my faith in humanity having common sense dies a little a bit more..

Towcester racecourse to ban jockeys from using the whip in races at the track

Towcester, the small rural racecourse set in some of Northamptonshire’s most picturesque countryside, is set make racing history in October when it becomes the first of Britain’s 60 tracks to outlaw the use of the whip by jockeys in any of its races.

From the track’s meeting on Oct 5 and at all fixtures afterwards, every race staged at the course will be run under rules currently in place for the successful 'hands and heels’ series of races.

This series, run in conjunction with the British and Northern racing schools, is staged at a number of tracks both Flat and jumping, and is ostensibly to teach inexperienced jockeys and amateur riders how to get the best out of a horse without recourse to the whip.

One of the rules of that series is that jockeys must carry a whip. They can pull it through from one hand to the other as often as they like and hit a horse down the shoulder with it in a backhand position. However, they cannot smack a horse down the neck in the forehand position, behind the saddle or encourage it by waving the whip parallel to its head. Failure to obey the rules in this series results in automatic disqualification. After Oct 5th, any winner at Towcester whose jockey is found by the stewards to be in breach of these rules will be disqualified.

The debate about the use of the whip, nearly 20 years after officials introduced rules to curb overuse by riders, has become racing’s hottest potato in the couple of weeks since Jason Maguire was banned for five days for 'excessive use’ on the Grand National winner Ballabriggs. Donald McCain’s giant gelding subsequently had to be dismounted and given oxygen at the end of the four and a half mile race and the spectacle was watched by millions on television.

In the week after the National the British Horseracing Authority, ironically, had more negative feedback from the public about Maguire’s use of the whip than it did about the two horses which died as a result of falls in the race.

Since then, a number of big names, many of them retired trainers and jockeys – very few active participants in the sport want changes to the Rules or the whip banned – such as Ian Balding, John Francome, Clare Balding and Sir Peter O’Sullevan, have leant their weight to a campaign to get the current whip rules altered or improved.

Towcester’s board of directors, chaired by Lord Hesketh, took the decision to stick their head above the parapet in the debate earlier this week. The racecourse’s general manager Kevin Ackerman has sent a letter to Stuart Middleton at the BHA’s Race Planning Department informing him of their plans and requesting advice on the correct procedure for implementing the Rules.

It is the board’s view that the public who attend Towcester, many of them occasional racegoers who get in free under another of the course’s innovative policies, “do not enjoy watching horses getting whipped after they have raced up our steep hill”. The letter also stressed the board’s strong reservations about the present Rules, which allow the connections of a horse to be victorious in spite of their jockey having breached the regulations.

The letter continued, however, to make it clear that they did not consider the current whip rules to represent cruelty to horses. “We wish,” it added, “to address the perception and fairness of racing at Towcester.”

The BHA has issued strict guidelines for jockeys to follow regarding the number of times the whip can be used and the manner in which it can be administered. If they are found to be in breach of these Rules, jockeys are banned for a number of days depending on the severity of the offence. Repeat offenders face even more lengthy bans.

Lord Hesketh, who retained the racecourse when he sold off the family home of Eaton Neston in 2006 having invested £7.5 million in the facilities after selling off the old racecourse stables nearer the town for housing, said: “Towcester has always been an innovative racecourse. We believe this is the way forward for the industry, as we did when we pioneered free entry in 2002.”

The topography of the racecourse, which used to be part of the parkland around Eaton Neston House, is unique in boasting the stiffest uphill finish in the country, the ground rising steeply over the last half a mile. In heavy ground even the most dour stayers find it hard work to negotiate the climb to the winning post.
The course, first used for racing in 1928, is scheduled to hold 19 meetings this year.

Clare Balding; BBC presenter
"I’m in favour of no whip or no whip after the last fence, which is what I’ve suggested to the BHA and to the jockeys – it would be better coming from them. The better riders will always come out on top. From the television perspective of wanting to make racing look beautiful it is very hard with super slow-motion, it looks worse. Ruby Walsh winning on Big Buck’s at Cheltenham, when he dropped his stick, changed my mind about it – it was the best finish of the meeting."

Paul Nicholls; Champion Jumping Trainer
"I haven’t got a strong view, but it needs a lot of quiet reflection from a few good brains rather than a lot of hot air. A lot of the suggestions would be hard to police but the day they take a high profile race off someone because he’s broken the whip rules then it will become a deterrent and virtually self-policing."

Sir Peter O’Sullevan; former BBC commentator
"I’m definitely for its use for encouragement and correction, but not chastisement. On the richter scale of cruelty it doesn’t even register but it registers most regrettably cosmetically. It is often as unnecessary as it is unappealing. To say that because a horse is spoilt that we can lay into now and again is out of order. I once congratulated Willie Shoemaker on a fine winning ride in which he didn’t use his whip. He replied: ‘I guess more horses are whipped out of the winner’s enclosure than whipped in it."

David Muir; Equine consultant to the RSPCA
"We have not been behind this campaign, it’s been media driven, and are not against the whip itself. But racing needs a good system to deal with persistent offenders. With half a hundred weight of power and temperament a jockey needs a whip for safety and correction, but when it comes to encouragement it begins to get a bit fuzzy. We are not seeking an outright ban but we can’t have some jockeys behaving the way they do."

Sunday, April 17, 2011


Youre in the running for the Premiership, you score a goal in the 98th minute to put yourself ahead, the stadium goes wild with uncontrollable joy, but then, in an unexpected twist, you give away a penalty in the 101st minute to draw, at home. Yes, thats right, it would only happen to Arsenal..

They have less bottle than Rory McIlory, although I did feel sorry for him last weekend, he was three shots ahead at some stage this weekend and ended up finishing third (in a far easier field), dont really want to call him a bottler but you surely have to give him the timeform squiggle, as soon as hes put under pressure his putting is nearly as bad as my good friend Mr Doyle.

I missed the Khan fiasco last night, but after reading the in-running thread on Betfair decided to watch it this morning. What a mountain made out of a molehill! Now, obviously the fight shouldnt have been stopped, but Khan won the six rounds (and on all three judges scorecards too) and was bossing the fight. The cries of dodgy ref are a bit over the top to say the least - its not like he was getting hammered and they thought 'oh quick lets get him out of there' he was clearly going to win anyway. McCloskeys corner had every right to be seething I suppose but in the grand scheme of things Khan was winning easily and I assume he was in the 1.0x's when it happened. Khan being a bit of a twat will always make things worse than they seem, but if McCloskey gets a rematch from his moaning and crowing he'll be doing VERY well for himself. It'll be a pointless rematch too.

Anyway, I found my bogey team for the IPL4 in the shape of RCB, minus €350 on their games this week, no real excuses apart from them being a big bunch of useless gobshites really. Ah no, I laid and they lost wickets - unluckily (for me) I like AB de Villiers and Virat Kohli, so I'll support them more times than not so didnt red out when I should have done, the rest of the team leave a lot to be desired though, I should know better. In hindsight, on their second game the correct move was to red out and save €70 but I'm strongly against backing sub 1.2 in IPL so I decided to just leave it and roll the dice, didnt work, but IMO you'd be a serious loser (probably be dead by this stage from heart attacks!) to back sub 1.2 over the past four years so I'll just get on with it.

Apart from RCB games, the markets have been OK, at one stage I was plus €450 for the week but finish with €337, I'm still sticking with the 'pick the winner' tactic rather than going equal green, its won me money this week and its the way I like doing things anyway so I'll continue - getting rid of red remains the main priority though. I missed todays games because ITV decided to show some crap touring car race instead FFS. I know there is some ill-feeling towards Sky (for whatever reason) but they really are absolutely top notch for covering sporting events and when theyre in charge and not relying on picking up the feed you never miss a moment and the time delay is minimal, theyre worth every cent IMO, life would be boring without sport anyway and without them we'd see an awful lot less.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Its Weird, In America..

I havent been following this story at all, apparently its been going on since 2006, however, the Americans crusade against online gambling strikes me as, well, a bit mad:

Three largest online poker sites indicted and shut down by FBI

The founders of the three largest online poker sites were indicted on Friday in what could serve as a death blow to a thriving industry.

Eleven executives at PokerStars, Full Tilt Poker, Absolute Poker and a number of their affiliates were charged with bank fraud and money laundering in an indictment unsealed in a Manhattan court. Two of the defendants were arrested on Friday morning in Utah and Nevada. Federal agents are searching for the others.

Prosecutors are seeking to immediately shut down the sites and to eventually send the executives to jail and to recover $3 billion from the companies. By Friday afternoon Full Tilt Poker’s site displayed a message explaining that “this domain name has been seized by the F.B.I. pursuant to an Arrest Warrant.”

The online gambling industry has taken off over the last decade, drawing an estimated 15 million Americans to bet online.

In 2006 Congress passed a law curtailing online gambling. Most of the leading sites found ways to work around the law, but prosecutors allege that in doing so they broke the law.

“These defendants concocted an elaborate criminal fraud scheme, alternately tricking some U.S. banks and effectively bribing others to assure the continued flow of billions in illegal gambling profits,” Preet Bharara, the U.S. attorney in Manhattan, said in a statement.

Poker fans took to Twitter in droves, worried about the money in their online gaming accounts, fretting that online poker's days were at an end.

"Well the good news is I think I only had about $300 left on the online poker sites overall," tweeted Jimi Schindler of Madison, Wis. "Maybe I'll see that money?!!?"

I suppose now is as good a time as any to appreciate that we live in a fairly "normal" part of the world towards gambling, the Australians dont let you bet in running, the French block Betfair, and now the Americans are going all FBI on poker. Cant wait for the movie to come out, Denzel Washington gonna play head FBI agent IMO, except in an unexpected twist Phil Ivey and Tom Dwan are gonna team together and run over the FBI and bring poker back.. well has anyone got a better idea..!?

Sunday, April 10, 2011


Have to say I enjoyed Monday-Thursday off this week as planned and am raring to go for the IPL, hard to believe it doesnt finish until the 28th of May, thats literally miles away - imagine if Cheltenham went on that long. I was thinking of a 'goal' (sort of goal) to average a certain amount over the matches, €10 a match is €700, €50 a match is €3.5k etc, but I bloody hate targets and stuff like that, so I'll just get on with each game and play it as it is - days like today would present massive problems for having 'goals' because first game innings SP was 1.02 and second game was 1.06 (I think, went to Leopardstown instead). Some days its just impossible to win so having 'goals' will only lead to going hunting for something that isnt there, its probably going to be my biggest test of discipline in ages to sit through 70 odd games without getting involved in the first innings and waiting for the second - especially when the game might be effectively over be then like todays collapses.

Bit of a culture shock on Friday anyway going to the crazy moving T20 markets from the steady ODIs, still working out how to play it as I go along, green out equally or play to back the winner?

I had two books exactly the same but with different outcomes, I was late on the screen shot but they hit 1.16, without me greening out, ended up being wrong..

Then Saturday, it bounced around a few times from 1.4 to 1.9ish, held my nerve and they ended up winning..

I dont think theres any "right" way of doing things, its just personal preference. Its always annoying (after the event) to not win being in a good position but then when I'm right I win more by not going equal, so I'd back myself to be right more times than I'm wrong and sure go from there. The primary aim will always be to get rid of red anyway (if the odds allow). Friday, they needed 9 off 8, so maybe I'm over-thinking a greening tactic when in fact its just the teams being gobshites, 9 off 8 FFS. Its like this anyway - get rid of red and worry about the rest later. Theres so many games theres gonna be so many opportunities, coming back to the average if you were to win €30 every game thats €2.1k - one game in the grand scheme of things isnt going to make a difference if you keep the head.

Anybody brave enough to follow me on Twitter will know I've been backing Tiger this week, even though I've said numerous times he may never win again (howzzzaat for logic eh!), I've dumped after yesterdays round, I did have big green on him after Friday but cant see him winning now. I've had the remaining green on McIlroy - small bit afraid of the choke but he has a cushion now and the ones behind didnt really inspire yesterday so I think he can get it done. Hopefully he does anyway, because I had €100 cash on Tiger at 12s too which I never bothered laying off so Rory winning will at least get 70% of that back. I dont normally trade golf - was a serial loser first year on the blog on golf - so I'm not overly pushed what happens really, not losing €300 odd is an achievement I reckon..!

Sunday, April 3, 2011

CWC Finnish

Thank feck for that. And congratulations to India, probably an "obvious" pick before it started but many I'm sure lost some faith during the group stages, the bowling wasnt great but obviously they have possibly the best batting lineup in the world. Its hard to argue they werent the best team and deserving winners because they beat Sri Lanka - most deserving of a final place, Pakistan - one of the best bowling sides IMO and fantastic when theyre trying we know that, and Australia - not as good as they once were but still holders, the only other side you'd mention would be Saffers - but we all know theyre a big bunch of chokers when it comes down to knock out tournaments.

My outright bets stayed the same as last week, cant really complain. I do have one complaint though, both winning bets were placed with Betpack (they dont know I had bets elsewhere sure!) and I ended up with 2/2 with them, add my Ashes cover on the rain in the 2nd Test and I was thinking thats another account busto, one of the few I had left that wasnt really limited much, although see from the Misbah bet (€222.44) they were starting to. I didnt have to wait long to find out anyway, I tried to back St Nicholas Abbey for the Arc this morning..

Two quid, worse than Bluesq FFS! PP gave me €24 E/W and VC €50 E/W which was fine, only for the horse to go and run like a drain then. At least the positives are (OK so positives is a strong word, we'll say straws to clutch at..) first run of the season, historically APOBs need the run, ground very heavy (we had thunder and lightening with heavy showers most of yesterday) but he does like soft ground so cant really blame that but I suppose having had so long off its natural he would get tired in what was very sticky holding ground, and Fame And Glory finished a well below par 3rd in the same event last year and he had a alright season after didnt he. The Negatives are it looked shite. Ah feck it hes no chance doesnt he? I can hardly get my money back now anyway so by that assumption I make him a feckin' good thing. Love is blind.

Anyway, my trading this week has been hit and miss. Hit twice, missed once. I did learn from losing and used it effectively to win yesterday though, I should know this by now but whenever India play the market just loves them. I had plenty of chances to dump red on India v Pak but just didnt take it, always too high IMO but its very hard to fight the market all day (and get a "fair" price in doing so). I switched around on Saturday and when Sri Lanka went odds on just laid that knowing without losing a wicket the market would strongly support India for any amount of runs, which makes sense when youre on that trade but if its happening against you (as it did against Pak) I'm sitting here thinking FFS this is an incredibly shit price, 10 ticks for a single.

India winning is great though, it means thousands of Indians are most likely going to have a loaded Betfair account, and whats next week? The IPL! Boom! By far and away my favourite trading of the year, 20/20s not half as stressful as 50/50 and the afternoon games beat getting up early by miles. If I did learn one thing from the WC (and it was my first WC trading cricket) it would be to forget about the 1.0x games and just not bother, focus on more moving markets, but like I said we'll probably never have that volume of 50 over cricket again. The thing is when I see a boxing match like last night at 1/20 I just dont do it, so I should apply that rule to cricket too, even if its as big as the WC. I'm taking a full break from Betfair until Friday anyway and then should be raring to go for the IPL.

I havent done any research on it yet, but theres two more teams this year, which means were more than likely to have lesser quality Indians knocking about given youre only allowed four overseas players in each starting lineup. Some young Indian bowler bowling the last and a handy batsman there needing 14 runs, you might not want to be on the bowler as often as 14 runs would suggest. I found last year though that the market was almost expecting "amazing scenes" and you had situations where 1.3 now was 1.1 two years ago, its definitely getting harder and more competitive each year but with the two extra teams and more thinly spread out Indian players we might be back to the glory days. Sure we'll see.

(Btw, I took screen shots of my losing outright bets before they finished because it was easier to click on unsettled bets rather than do a date search when they finished, yeah that jinx didnt work either, I know).