Wednesday, 25 September 2013

Americas Cup - Round 19

Once every (usually) three, four or five years, depending on legal wrangling, I become slightly interested in sailing when the Americas Cup reaches its closing stages. This year's is proving somewhat remarkable. For the first time, the final is a best of 17, beating the previous high of best of 9 by some distance, and the USA started effectively on -2 after being caught cheating in March's warm-ups. With an 8-1 lead, New Zealand, not surprisingly, traded at 1.01 on the exchanges. At 8-2, the Kiwis were well clear in the 13th race but they failed to beat the time limit due to light winds in San Francisco Bay and the race was voided.

And now after seven straight wins, (talk about momentum), the USA team has tied the final, and set up a winner take all race today at around 9:15pm. The last time an America's Cup went to a similar outcome, was in 1983 - when the Australian challengers came from 1-3 down to 3-3 in a best of 7. I well remember laying in my sleeping bag on the floor of the living room of my granddad's North Devon bungalow watching the Australians clinch the win 4-3 and hand the USA its first loss in 132 years. It was quite exciting, but my Nan (also a Cassini) was buried the next day, and it didn't seem appropriate to talk about it too much over drinks and nibbles, but for some reason the memory of watching the sailing the night before is as strong as those of the funeral itself almost exactly 30 years on.  The USA are down to 1.31 to win, and as excited as they get about play-off game sevens, one can only imagine how crazy they must be going over a 'game' 17 (or is it 19?)

The Football Analyst picked up one winner from two last night as Braintree Town won at Wrexham. Nuneaton Town did not win the top of the table clash at Cambridge United though, and were hardly likely too with the hosts having a Crystal Palace star in the team, and one who couldn't have been Appiah to score...

No joy for anyone else (Forza Fizzer dropped on point, and Punters' Friend dropped two) and there are some matches in-play tonight for XX Draws and Football Elite. With form starting to settle down, I've started sending out a couple of bonus value selections with the XX Draws, and I probably shouldn't say this but they are currently three out of three. AS Roma, Atletico Madrid on Saturday, and Malaga last night. And one more in action tonight. No selections from Skeeve from the Conference games, and the poor start that most football tipsters are making to the season has brought these comments from my old friend Steve the Hamper Man - Warning - the below contains bad language. Do not read any further if you are under 18 or of a sensitive disposition.
Onto Soccer, what can I say. I don’t usually swear but FUCK it’s shit. The one positive if you can call it that was the fact that FB Elite didn’t make a loss. He made a whopping $650 profit. Combo FI lost $500. But it was the big two again that failed miserably. Let’s first talk about Skeeve, after just the other week saying he was going to down stakes he does quite well last week and the next week is back to full stakes and loses them all. A $4,800 loss and the excuses were inexcusable. Now he is saying that it is always the case that the first half of the season is terrible, if that’s the case then why did he not do this analysis before and realise he has no clue early in the season. We are now stuck once again with the hope of a good second half, but what happens when it ends up being as bad as the start? I don’t mind (well I do) losing the money, but I really hate the excuses. If they were valid then fair enough, but in my worthless opinion they are just crap. Really not sure what to do at the moment, but will continue to ride it out and see what happens, as always, will only stop if the bank goes to zero. Onto an even bigger loss for TFA, I have just combined all the models I follow into one as it was getting too time consuming to update them all each week. This weeks loss was over $10,000 for the second week in a row. At this rate the bank will be dead in the next month or so. Surprisingly I still have some confidence in TFA, only because I see the results and that we are betting value. Value is pointless if they all lose, but if it were for a bit of luck, I could easily be sitting on a small loss. I can see this model turning things around in quick fashion and really hope it does. If it doesn’t then I will be as harsh with TFA as I am with Skeeve. Lets hope that both perform so well over the coming months that they can tell me to shut the fuck up for writing such horrible things about them.
The life of a tipster is not an easy one. In many ways, you are only as good as your last couple of weeks. Doubts soon creep in as to whether the edge has gone, or the tipster somehow has lost his touch, however long a profitable record he may have had.

Steve is wrong with his suggestion that "value is pointless if they all lose". Value doesn't guarantee anything short-term, but if we don't have value, we are guaranteed to lose in the long run. It's someone who really doesn't understand betting who is happier with winning a fair coin toss at 1.7 than losing a coin toss at 2.3. Value IS the point.

I'm glad I'm not the only one who finds Graeme's numerous systems and numbering a little confusing. Fortunately, the selections for the FTL are straightforward enough, and I can just about understand those.

One obvious problem tipsters have is that their selections reveal a lot about their strategy, and opens the door to copycats. Football Elite was the inspiration for me rating the top five leagues in Europe, the same five that Matt dips into for his selections. If Matt had a few seasons of profitably backing in Belgium, the Netherlands, Portugal, Scotland and Russia, my direction may have been different.

Emp commented that he wasn't only thinking in terms of smoothly transitioning promoted teams by ranking lower leagues, but also of being able to profit from them. He has a point. Skeeve finds value - at least after Xmas :) - in the fifth and sixth (south) levels of the English game, and as I have said before, but still done nothing about, this may well be a good league to keep ratings on and track true form. Time is a factor though. I spend long enough sitting in front of my PC updating my spreadsheet as it is. Hard to believe that the Conference is almost a quarter the way through the season as well.


TheAlchemist said...

I have to admit that I did find the line " Value is pointless if they all lose" quite amusing.

Of course I can understand his frustration but that's part and parcel of betting.

There's a saying that your biggest downswing is always ahead of you, not behind you (at least in poker). That's something I rarely see written about in sports trading.

I often find that successful poker player's seem to have a better grasp or emotional grip on variance and downswings then their betting/trading counterparts. Maybe it's just me who's alone in that thinking?

Interesting post.

Emp said...

That's especially true of people who've played Multi-Table tournaments as their main game, since those can be particularly brutal in terms of variance. Most who have tend to develop a very good appreciation of variance and sample sizes.