Weekly Articles "Road to Riches" by Rich 'Tighty' Prew

The Road to Riches: Weekend 3rd-6th April

Posted on 30 Mar 2015 08:59 in Weekly Articles "Road to Riches" by Rich 'Tighty' Prew

Coming up this weekend

- Football,  A full Premier League schedule and a double football league programme over Easter weekend.

- Rugby Union, the Quarter finals of the European Rugby Champions Cup.

- Racing, On Saturday Kempton on the flat and national hunt meetings at Haydock, Newton Abbot and Carlisle. Seven meetings on Easter Monday.

- Tennis, the conclusions of the ATP and WTP Miami Opens in Florida and the start of the ATP US Mens Clay Court Championship in Houston.

- Golf, USPGA Tour: Shell Houston Open, the final tournament before the US Masters next week.


Free Tips of the Week   

The 2015 Major League Baseball season starts on Sunday with the first of 162 games per team, and whilst we would normally try to do short-term tips for this column, the ante-post markets for the MLB throw up opportunities. For more details on the structral changes taking place in the MLB, and why that is producing pricing inefficiences, please see the article below this.

In the American League Central division the Chicago White Sox have been rebuilding for several years, and last year their payroll fell to 18th highest in the MLB despite being in one of the league's biggest markets, as they ditched expensive contracts and veteran players from their last strong team departed the club. This gave them the firepower to recruit heavily this off-season and complete their rebuilding process.

Already the team had a top pitcher in Chris Sale, and they recruited All-Star Jeff Samardzija from the A's. Add Jose Quintana and sooner or later top draft pick Carlos Rodon and you have 4 of the 5 man rotation there and ready, and looking extremely promising. The Samardzjia trade was described as follows

"a deal that would send Jeff Samardzija to the South Side -- a trade that would solve Chicago's starting rotation problem, shake up the AL Central and set in motion one of the most impressive offseason makeovers of recent winters."

The rebuilding did not stop with the starting rotation. They re-tooled their bullpen with relievers and closers, notably David Robertson who closed for the Yankees last season and they recruited in infield and outfield, notably via Melky Cabrera for left field

"No team, though, has improved itself more since the end of last season than the White Sox. Having added a top of the rotation starter in his prime (Samardzija), an elite closer (Robertson), an underrated lefty reliever (Zach Duke), an All-Star outfielder (Cabrera), and a grizzled slugger who’s a perfect fit for their ballpark (Adam LaRoche), the White Sox are positioned for a run in 2015, and for the foreseeable future. Asked what AL team has upgraded its roster the most, a rival AL executive said, “I think the White Sox. And in that division, where the Tigers may be taking a step back a little, there’s an opportunity.”

The White Sox finished 18 games behind in the AL Central division last season with a 73-89 record but adding these new pieces to a roster including last year's rookie of the year Jose Abreu they should be right up there this time, hitting deeper through the order, with pitching depth and better defense.

Little of this is factored into prices. Part of this will be their division, which features the powerful Detroit Tigers and the fancied Cleveland Indians as well as the Kansas City Royals who made the World Series last year . Part of this is scepticism that any team will go from 70-75 wins one year to the 85-90 wins required for a division or a wild card.

Vegas currently forecasts the White Sox for 82 wins this season but this is a very congested pack. 19 of the 30 MLB teams are projected to finish with 80-87.5 wins and no American League team is forecast over the top end of this range. Taking last year: The Giants and Royals, wild-card teams both, won just 88 and 89 regular-season games, respectively, but reached the championship round, while all six 90 game-winners watched from home. They key is to getting into the high 80s, getting to the play-offs and then getting hot at the right time.

I am confident enough that a case can be made for the White Sox jumping from 73 wins in 2014 to the playoffs this season

Of course there are risks, this is a six month ante-post bet. The main one for the roster is depth, if key players are injured but that is a risk for any MLB team. We are being offered prices to compenasate though:

5 points win Chicago White Sox to win the American League 14-1 BetVictor

3 points e/w Chicago White Sox to win the World Series 33-1 (each way 1/2 the odds 1,2) BetVictor

 

The 2015 MLB

There are 30 MLB teams split into six divisions, three in the National League and three in the American League. Tere is a 162 game regular season from April until September. Five teams from each league then contest the play-offs, the winners of the two leagues playing in the World Series in October.

To a large extent, all the major US sports are structured to provide competitive balance. This is especially the case in the NFL which has a salary cap and extensive free agency, and a team can go from bottom to top in a short time if it manages and recruits well including the draft.

The MLB has no salary cap, has free agency but also it is unusual to draft a player and see him straight into the majors. Draft picks can spend a long time in the minor leagues particularly if drafted from high school at 18. In addition the MLB has local TV deals on top of the national contracts. If you are in a big market such as New York, LA or Chicago for example regional sports networks can pay a fortune for the TV rights. The Los Angeles Dodgers inked the second largest deal worth $8.35 billion over 25 years with Time Warner Cable last year, to give one instance. If you are in one of the MLB's smaller market cities your deal will be far smaller. The difference this provides to spending power, and much of the money was spent on acquiring free agents, has been marked and of all the US Sports baseball has most resembled "haves" and "havenots" in terms of success and acquiring talent

On Opening day 2014 the LA Dodgers had a payroll of over $235m and a record sixteen teams exceeded $100m.. At the other end of the scale two teams, Houston and Miami, had sub $50m payrolls. Historically been quite unusual for a side to go from bottom to top very quickly: there have been barriers to doing so in acquiring talent, paying it and getting it on the field quickly.

However, competitive balance is key in US Sports and successive MLB commissioners have introduced a number of measures to level the playing field including a luxury tax (penalties for over spending via payroll) and penalties for under-spending. This has had the effect of meaning payrolls across the league are equalising, and so the English premier league effect of it being impossible to beat the richest teams over a season is being reduced

So the high rollers aren’t outspending the second-tier teams to the degree they once did. Nor are the penny-pinchers falling as far behind. The teams at the bottom of the new 2015 payroll rankings are much closer to $100 million than $0, which wasn’t true two years ago. It’s not just the fear of financial penalties that has forced the big and small spenders toward the centre of the payroll range. The local TV contracts have enabled some teams to extend their young players instead of watching them walk and the traditional underdog teams now contain young players who can’t easily be bought.

Some teams are still smarter and more efficient than others, you still have to manage well off the field, and coach well on it but levelling the financial playing field is reducing the variation between teams.

Four teams in last year's payroll bottom six made the playoffs last year. Only three teams in the top six did. The Kansas City Royals made the World Series on a sub $100m payroll. In an era of increasing competitive balance, being a big club in the league doesn’t grant the power to dominate that it once did.

Former commissioner Bud Selig’s introduction of a second wild card spot in each league in 2012 has done wonders for the regular season, as more teams than ever before believe they have a shot at the play-offs, but it has also meant that the World Series participants can more than ever be those clubs that get both hot and lucky at just the right time

The effects of structural changes in the MLB finance and play-off structure since 2012 provide value in ante-post betting via spotting teams that may improve faster than forecasts assume. There’s a good chance that another unlikely World Series winner will be seen in 2015, and the tip above is an attempt to find it.

 

Next week on Betting Emporium: The Aintree Grand National Festival (9-11 April 2015)

Aintree Grand National Festival (Full Package) 9th-11th April 2015
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At the Aintree Festival 2014 we had winners at 28/1, 16/1, 14/1, 4/1 and horses places at 40/1, 25/1, 18/1, 16/1, 11/1, 9/1, 8/1,11/2

All horse racing selections (since our launch in Feb 2013) are showing a +ROI of +14.95% and +764 pts


Next Week on Betting Emporium: The Masters

The Masters, Augusta (April 9th-12th 2015) will be covered on Betting Emporium by Neil Channing HERE

It will be free to all registered users


Premier League Darts (5th Feb-21st May 2015)

We are now half way through this year's Premier League Darts.

Nigel Seeley is providing weekly updates on all the matches.

Premier League Darts (Access for weeks 9-16) £59.99 Sign Up Here

Sign up to Brodders' tips:

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Betting £10 a point would be showing a profit of +£5966.70

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Premier League 2014/15

Premier League Statistical Analysis 4th - 6th April 2015 - write up for the weekend has been published here


Bookmaker reviews and advice

Getting the best price available is very important for all those who take their betting seriously.

Please open an account with all those bookmakers on the page on this link that you do not already have an account with using the links provided.

 There are literally hundreds of pounds on offer from bookmakers just for signing up through Bettingemporium.com


Betting Emporium results

The detailed results page has been updated as have the spreadsheets with the detailed bets. They can be found by clicking RESULTS

£10 per point on every recommended bet since launch in Feb 2013 would be winning £12,777.60 (as at 17-3-15)

All bets have an ROI +4.55% and Horse Racing has an ROI +14.95%

There is also a Frequently Asked Questions Section

The Road to Riches: Weekend 28th-29th March

Posted on 22 Mar 2015 12:26 in Weekly Articles "Road to Riches" by Rich 'Tighty' Prew

Coming up this weekend

- Football, UEFA European Championship Qualifying matches and a full football league programme

- Cricket, the 2015 Cricket World Cup final in Melbourne on Sunday

- Formula One, the Malaysian Grand Prix in Sepang on Sunday

- Rugby Union, the return of Aviva Premiership and Pro-12 games after the dramatic conclusion to the Six Nations

- Racing, flat meetings at Doncaster, Kempton and Chelmsford, national hunt meetings at Stratford and Uttoxeter

- Tennis, ATP and WTP Miami Opens in Florida

- Golf, USPGA Tour: Valero Texas Open in San Antonio. European Tour: Trophee Hassan II, in Agadir, Morocco.


Free Tips of the Week   

The Australian Grand Prix two weeks ago didn't set the pulses racing. Mercedes dominated as expected, came home in a 1-2 and routinely lapped Albert Park over a second quicker than their nearest competitor.  Mercedes are now as low as 11/4 to win every race this season.

Mercedes aside, Vettel confirmed the promise of pre-season testing for Ferrari and finished 3rd ahead of Massa who said afterwards "the red car was simply faster" in race pace and that he couldn't mount a sustained challenge to regain his lost podium position. The engine performance for Ferrari represents a big step up from 2014.  Elsewhere Red Bull's Renault power unit is a disappointment for the second year running. Post race Ricciardo said that he thought Red Bull had "slipped two seconds off the pace."

This weekend, in the second of fly-away races at the start of the season, is the Malaysian Grand Prix. Compared to Australia step changes in performance are unlikely (and will remain so until the teams beginning the European season in May). The Far East is a long way away from the test beds, wind tunnels and factories of their teams providing the legwork for the improvements in performance hoped for during a season.

We should expect some trends established in Australia to carry on in Malaysia. Just in case we think things will be too predictable though, Malaysia's race runs in extreme heat and a late-afternoon timeslot, meaning heavy rain is always a possibility given the country’s tropical climate, and that often means safety cars and opportunities for creative strategy.

The clear superiority of Mercedes is obviously the dominant force in outright markets in Formula One betting and as is usually the case in any sport with a clear winner of most races (14/1 bar two in Malaysia) we have to turn to sub-markets to find some value

Firstly, in the outright market each way terms are only 1/3 the odds top 2 apart from a couple of firms offering top 3 but ducking all the outright prices. Realistically we would have to rely on mechanical problems to get any non-Mercedes into the top two. Betting "without Mercedes" gives us a chance. I like this market currently because Formula 1 lacks depth in competitiveness. Red Bull is off the pace and the McLaren is at the back of the pack. The Force Indias are reliable but slow. Lotus and Sauber are improving and Toro Rosso has two talented young drivers, but its a stretch to expect them to hit a podium.

So we are left with Ferrari and Williams. “The Ferraris look great, they really do. It’s surprising to see how good their times are” Hamilton told the media after Friday's practices in Malaysia which saw Ferrari ahead of the field ex-Mercedes. That Ferrari is ahead of Williams at this race is interesting, as we would expect the long straights of Malaysia to favour the Williams with a Mercedes engine. Perhaps there is a caveat that the Ferrari was carrying less fuel. We can strongly suggest though that Vettel is slightly quicker than Raikkonen all other things being equal so the 6/4 about Vettel in the "Malaysian Grand Prix without Mercedes" market looks more than fair

Looking at another sub-market, "Top Six Finish" and relating that through to the pace we saw in Australia. The Lotus team is running a Mercedes engine this year and the improvements from that were seen in the first race weekend. Grosjean and Maldonado ran top ten in second and third practice, qualified in the top ten only 0.2 seconds off the Red Bull and then both failed to complete a lap of the race.

Grosjean was interviewed last week and said

"Our target for the early races is to be regularly in the top 10. We certainly demonstrated that in Albert Park and our race pace simulations were good so if we'd remained in the race we should have finished strongly. There's nothing to suggest this can't be the case in Malaysia and we really want to start scoring points."

Grosjean was 4th in FP1 in Malaysia then suffered engine problems in the second session and is priced at 5/2 to finish top six in Malaysia behind the Williams, Ferrari, Mercedes drivers and Ricciardo in the betting. Reliability is a major risk here but we can also expect attritition from runners in front. Grosjean is far preferred to Maldonado, for whom finishing a race often seems like an achievement in itself.

10 points Sebastian Vettel : 6/4 generally, Malaysian Grand Prix without Mercedes

6 points Romain Grosjean 5/2 generally, Malaysian Grand Prix top Six Finish

 

The racing right

The announcement in last week’s Budget that the government intends to introduce a Racing Right to replace the Levy system, consultation on the scheme only having closed the week before, received a warm response from the racing industry which will administer the system that will see bookmakers pay for the right to bet on British horseracing.

Post budget quotes told us that the racing right was "“the biggest step forward for racing in a generation” and a “welcome and tremendous boost”.

The essence of the racing right is straightforward. Create a right to accept bets, and give it to racing to sell to betting firms increasing the total amount that the bookmakers pay to racing. Currently bookmakers pay 10.75% of their gross profits from their UK horseracing business to racing  (£80m) and, together with media rights and sponsorship the transfer to racing is circa £250m.

Nick Rust, the Ladbrokes director who recently crossed the tracks to become the chief executive of the BHA said that it was common sense to deliver a system that closes a loophole that means all bookmakers licensed by the Gambling Commission now pay tax in Britain but only around half of all bets placed online contribute to the Levy.

Of course, implementing the racing right is going to be far from straightforward. The Association of British Bookmakers said that the scheme is “unworkable" and the Right will face legal challenges both at home and abroad.

Firstly it will give the British Horse Racing Authority the ability to charge their own price for bookmakers to offer bets on British racing, a product on which they have a monopoly. This may attract the attention of the competition authorities. These issues might be mitigated if racing were divided up into separate packages, as we have seen in other sports. It might also be possible to give the Right to individual tracks though whether that is feasible for smaller tracks with limited fixtures is unclear.

Secondly even if British competition authorities approve, the European Commission will be a factor too as this is might be construed as "state aid", a monopoly handed to a body by the government.

Over and above legal challenges there is a further problem with the Racing Right. Horse racing is not that attractive a product for bookmakers, or for punters. It is less and less a product that younger punters want to bet on, viewing figures are down consistently and in an era where they restrict bets easily bookmakers are passing on money to racing because they must, and not because it is necessarily makes financial sense for them to do so. Under the racing right, there will be no incentive for bookmakers to promote racing to their customers. Instead there will be  incentive to steer gamblers towards sports like football, and above all cheap, risk-free gaming products like FOBTs to pay for the increased costs that the racing right brings.

If it costs bookmakers/exchanges higher fixed sums to take bets on races, some may just stop doing so, reducing revenue and presumably increasing the burden on the remaining participants.  The money could come from the pockets of punters as margins widen /commission increases. 

Perhaps racing really thinks bookmakers still can't live without their product.  However is that the case for firms, increasingly operating online and where shop revenues are FOBT led? Would these firms prefer to offer "virtual" horse-racing, other sports and casino products only?

If racing is to realise its full value from the betting public, bookmakers need to be offering it as a product not because they have to, but because they want to. That means looking at the structure of British racing as a product to market, as much as its funding.

 


Aintree Grand National Festival (9-11 April 2015)

Aintree Grand National Festival (Full Package) 9th-11th April 2015
£99.99 Sign Up Here
Aintree Grand National Saturday 11th April 2015 £50 Sign Up Here
 

At the Aintree Festival 2014 we had winners at 28/1, 16/1, 14/1, 4/1 and horses places at 40/1, 25/1, 18/1, 16/1, 11/1, 9/1, 8/1,11/2

All horse racing selections (since our launch in Feb 2013) are showing a +ROI of +14.95% and +764 pts


Premier League Darts (5th Feb-21st May 2015)

The 10 player tournament is being held on 16 successive Thursday nights through to May 21st.

Nigel Seeley is providing weekly updates on all the matches.

Premier League Darts (full 16 week package) £99.99 Sign Up Here

Sign up to Brodders' tips:

All Brodders bets since inception are currently showing a ROI of +5.63%  (at 17th March 2015)

Betting £10 a point would be showing a profit of +£5966.70

Subscription to Brodders' write ups, analysis and bets is £50 a month. You can join at any time

Subscribe here


The Masters

The Masters, Augusta (April 9th-12th 2015) will be covered on Betting Emporium by Neil Channing HERE

It will be free to all registered users


Bookmaker reviews and advice

Getting the best price available is very important for all those who take their betting seriously.

Please open an account with all those bookmakers on the page on this link that you do not already have an account with using the links provided.

 There are literally hundreds of pounds on offer from bookmakers just for signing up through Bettingemporium.com


Betting Emporium results

The detailed results page has been updated as have the spreadsheets with the detailed bets. They can be found by clicking RESULTS

£10 per point on every recommended bet since  launch in Feb 2013 would be winning £12,777.60 (as at 17-3-15)

All bets have an ROI +4.55% and Horse Racing has an ROI +14.95%

There is also a Frequently Asked Questions Section

The Road to Riches: Weekend 21st-22nd March

Posted on 15 Mar 2015 12:49 in Weekly Articles "Road to Riches" by Rich 'Tighty' Prew

Coming up this weekend

- Football, a full Premier League programme including Liverpool v Manchester United on Snday and the football league programme

- Rugby Union, the final weekend of the 2015 Six Nations with England, Ireland and Wales seperated by points difference going into Saturday's three games

- Racing, national hunt meetings at Newbury, Stratford, Kelso, Bangor and Fontwell Park

- Cricket, the 2015 Cricket World Cup continues this weekend with the last quarter final on Saturday morning, New Zealand v the West Indies in Wellington

- Tennis, the conclusion of the ATP and WTA Indian Wells tournaments

- Golf, USPGA Tour: Arnold Palmer Invitational at Bay Hill GC, Orlando. European Tour: Madeira Islands Open, Portugal.


Free Tips of the Week   

The final weekend of the Six Nations sees the following three games

12pm Italy v Wales

3pm Scotland v Ireland

5pm England v France

After last week's results, England, Ireland and Wales are seperated by points difference at the top of the table

England 6 points +37 points difference

Ireland 6 points +33 points difference

Wales 6 points +12 points difference

France 4 points +22 points difference

So, the order of games is important. Wales will go out against Italy and try and set a target for Ireland, who then have to beat Scotland by enough to surpass that and set a benchmark for England at home in the last game who will know what they need to do to secure the Championship

External factors could play a part too. Good weather in Rome, bad weather in the UK and the points scoring potential of the three teams changes dramatically

Current odds to win the Six Nations are as follows:

England 5/6 Ireland 7/4 Wales 13/2

So who are the likely winners? Lets take a look at each game and reach a conclusion

Italy v Wales

- Wales are 24 point favourites here. At first glance that seems high. On their last four visits to Rome they have only scored two tries in each match, with the last three victories only bringing points differences of 5, 8 and 17. However....

- Italy's 29-0 defeat at home to France was the most abject six nations performance by any team in years. They also only have a six day turnaround before this game having played on Sunday and captain (and one of their few world class players) Parisse is out injured. When this news broke on Thursday, the Welsh Six Nations outright price fell by up to a point.

- Wales meanwhile were brilliant in defence aginst Ireland, recording a six nations record 250 team tackles and at one stage repelling 32 phases of Irish play in their own half

- Wales should win comfortably of course. In their favour, the Italian goal-kicking is the weakest in the competition by a long way. If they don't keep their score ticking over the chances of Wales receiving the required boost to points difference increases

- On the downside, it took an enormous physical effort to win against Ireland, and this match is only a week later. There are key injuries too, including three front row forwards. Whilst the sight of the Italian pack being shunted backwards by the French will be of some comfort, the prospect of a new Welsh front row may mitigate some of the advantage expected.

Scotland v Ireland

- The second quarter of the game aside, where Scotland attacked fluently, Scotland were blown away by England's power and to only lose by 12 was extremely fortunate indeed

- With the way that Ireland squeeze the life out of teams, Scotland could capitulate in this final match. Scotland do not have the size and strength up front and in defence that Wales have.

- As for Ireland, it could be said that they lacked a player with the magic to unlock Wales during those long spells of pressure but you could also argue that from a poor start and 12-0 down, and with Sexton on an off-day, they came back to come very close to drawing the game at the end

- Ireland are 8 point favourites to win in Edinburgh. That looks too low to me

England v France

- As we know points difference is going to prove crucial this weekend, and if England had finished just some of the raft of clear opportunities they created against Scotland, i wouldn't be writing this article. As it is, they squandered most of those chances generated from no less than 12 line breaks and are only four points better off than Ireland now.

- France are traditionally poor travellers (and that includes that they have won just one of their last 10 matches at Twickenham ), and many fancied them to get turned over on a wet day in Rome but the Italian performance was full of missed opportunities and France were gifted kickable penalties too. They too have a six day turnaround from their last match.

- This should be a real arm-wrestle, in part because (one lovely try in Rome apart) the French do not utilise the flair in their back three at all. Under Saint Andre we should expect France to play the percentages and take England on up front. The problem is the kicking game they employ is too inconsistent and the patterns of play are easy to defend. Mistakes such as in Rome, where France committed 20 handling errors, are also part of the problem.

- England are 9 point handicap favourites

Conclusion

England at odds-on are opposable. I tipped Wales pre-tournament in this column and expected the tournament to be decided on points difference, no grand slam. Unfortunately the combination of them winning by 20+ AND one of the other two not moving past them looks unlikely which accounts for them being the 13/2 outsider of three.

The interesting price is Ireland at nearly 2/1. Their style of play matches up really well with Scotland, who they should over-power. Granted we are then hoping for a performance of sorts from France, who if they were a horse would have two timeform squiggles next to their name, but we're getting 7/4 on one, 5/6 the other and only four points in it

Ultimately, I think Ireland will set England the task of beating France by at least 15 points in the final game.

10 points Ireland at 7/4 to win the Six Nations, Ladbrokes and Corals

(please note, at the time of writing Betfair Sportsbook have enhanced their price on Ireland winning the Six Nations to 2-1, maximum stake £25)


At th 2015 Cheltenham Festival Willie Mullins, Ireland's champion trainer, claimed a record eight successes at the meeting. This prompted bookmakers to quote 20-1 about Mullins winning all four festival majors in 2016

Five of Mullins's eight winners are owned by the ex-Barclays Capital investment banker Rich Ricci who, before and after his ousting from the firm in 2013 has invested enormous amounts of his fortune in National Hunt racing, a fortune enhanced by the sale of over £70m in shares prior to his departure.

“I came to horseracing with a lot of baggage,” admits Ricci. “I’ve got a stupid name, I was in an industry people hate and I’m a knuckle head."

An irony, given how much the banking crisis of which Ricci was a public face via the LIBOR scandal in particular affected so many people in the past few years, is that some of those same people affected stood to win significant windfalls last Tuesday if Annie Power had brought home the final leg of the Ricci multiple but the £50-100m estimated liability was of course denied by the mares' fall at the last in the World Hurdle one of the most dramatic sporting moments of the last few years across any sport. Their returns were directly linked to the fortunes of the Ricci horses.

What is clear, from the strength of the Mullins stable and especially the brilliance of Ricci horses such as Faugheen, Vautour and Douvan is that the investment has changed the competitive balance of the top end of the sport for the foreseeable future. This already saw Paul Nicholls deliberately target the big weekend prizes around the country in the weekends before the festival before the Mullins hordes arrived and will only intensify in the years to come

So, with Mullins and Ricci carrying all before them, Friday saw an incredibly competitive looking Gold Cup that saw an extremely unusual outcome. Coneygree was the first novice winner since 1974 and led from start to finish on at best good-to-soft ground and had only jumped fences in public 3 times before the race.

The background to Coneygree is one that screenplay writers will be looking at. Last November at Plumpton, Coneygree was due to run his first race after two years injured. The horse was withdrawn at the start by a vet who said Coneygree showed signs of lameness. The trainer's wife recounted this in the aftermath of the Gold Cup, remembering that her protestations to the vet were met by the response

"He's had two years off, he's not worth anything anyway"

Coneygree's dam, Plaid Maid, cost £3,000 and was bought to give her father, the late Lord Oaksey an interest in his later years. Lord Oaksey bred Coneygree and Carruthers from her.

At the Gold Cup, Coneygree was led up by Lily Bradstock,the trainers daughter who two years ago was unable to walk following a kick from a horse, and had to end her riding career subsequently.

The Mark Bradstock stable only has ten horses, near Leighton Buzzard.

On top of this almost perfect check-list of fairytale elements to the winner's story the horse he beat into second? Djakadam. Trained by Willie Mullins. Owned by Rich Ricci.

I didn't have a penny on Coneygree but I roared it up the hill.

Subsequently Coneygree was given a mark of 172, the highest for any novice chaser over any distance in a century

A victory for racing romantics and a hark back to an era passing us by daily, as the competitive environment of jumps racing changes.

Next, Aintree.....


Aintree Grand National Festival (9-11 April 2015)

Aintree Grand National Festival (Full Package) 9th-11th April 2015
£99.99 Sign Up Here
Aintree Grand National Saturday 11th April 2015 £50 Sign Up Here
 

At the Aintree Festival 2014 we had winners at 28/1, 16/1, 14/1, 4/1 and horses places at 40/1, 25/1, 18/1, 16/1, 11/1, 9/1, 8/1,11/2

All horse racing selections (since our launch in Feb 2013) are showing a +ROI of +14.95% and +764 pts


Premier League Darts (5th Feb-21st May 2015)

The 10 player tournament is being held on 16 successive Thursday nights through to May 21st.

Nigel Seeley is providing weekly updates on all the matches.

Premier League Darts (full 16 week package) £99.99 Sign Up Here

Sign up to Brodders' tips:

All Brodders bets since inception are currently showing a ROI of +5.63%  (at 17th March 2015)

Betting £10 a point would be showing a profit of +£5966.70

Subscription to Brodders' write ups, analysis and bets is £50 a month. You can join at any time

Subscribe here


Bookmaker reviews and advice

Getting the best price available is very important for all those who take their betting seriously.

Please open an account with all those bookmakers on the page on this link that you do not already have an account with using the links provided.

 There are literally hundreds of pounds on offer from bookmakers just for signing up through Bettingemporium.com


What else is on Betting Emporium?

Cricket World Cup: Analysis of the World Cup in Australia and New Zealand, free to access here

Premier League Statistical Analysis: You can read this here still FREE to all registered users


Betting Emporium results

The detailed results page has been updated as have the spreadsheets with the detailed bets. They can be found by clicking RESULTS

£10 per point on every recommended bet since  launch in Feb 2013 would be winning £12,777.60 (as at 17-3-15)

All bets have an ROI +4.55% and Horse Racing has an ROI +14.95%

There is also a Frequently Asked Questions Section

The Road to Riches: Weekend 14th-15th March

Posted on 9 Mar 2015 09:53 in Weekly Articles "Road to Riches" by Rich 'Tighty' Prew

Coming up this weekend

- Football, a full Premier League and football league programme

- Formula One, the opening weekend of the 2015 season in Melbourne for the Australian Grand Prix

- Cricket, the 2015 Cricket World Cup continues this weekend with the last of the Group Games. Most of the quarter final places are decided, but Ireland can also still qualify by beating Pakistan

- Racing, After the excitement of the Cheltenham festival, national hunt meetings at Kempton, Uttoxeter and Newcastle

- Rugby Union, the fourth weekend of the 2015 Six Nations including Wales hosting Ireland and the Calcutta Cup match England v Scotland

- Tennis, the opening weekend of the big Indian Wells tournaments on the ATP and WTA Tours

- Golf, the USPGA Tour at the Valspar Championship in, Palm Harbor, Florida and the European Tour's Tshwane Open at Centurion, South Africa.


Free Tips of the Week   

The fourth weekend of the six nations, featuring Ireland's major hurdle towards winning the Grand Slam in Cardiff and the the Calcutta Cup at Twickenham:

Wales v Ireland

Ireland's 19-9 victory over England was in part due to the ruthless pragmatism of the side under Joe Schmidt and in part because England underperformed. In Jonny Sexton and Connor Murray Ireland have superb game-managers, executing plans perfectly and with strong defence, competitive forwards and the brilliant kicking game they have won 3 out of 3 this tournament (and their last ten internationals )and are two wins away from a Grand Slam

Saturday is their toughest test on the way to the Slam, as Wales in Cardiff (despite a very poor record over the years at home against the Irish) are a challenge. Wales went to Paris and won, playing to a high level and if they can win on Saturday are right in the hunt for the Six Nations title with their last game in Rome.

Understandably enough the bookmakers expect this to be a very close game. Ireland are 10/11 outright and only one point handicap favourites. Both sides will kick their points and defend well. Wales will probably want to be more expansive and not get too bogged down in a forward battle where Ireland would likely have the edge

This should be a one score game. I said that for the Ireland/England game in Dublin and still scratch my head at some of England's tactical play and wonder how it wasn't.

I quite like backing a competitive home team as an under-dog and although this is clearly not the strongest of Six Nations a grand slam team has to play more than the percentages at some stage. Delving into the patterns of play so far into the tournament a bit further

- Ireland have scored less tries than Scotland, Italy, Wales and England in the tournament

- Ireland have carried the ball for fewer yards than England, Scotland and France

- 12 offloads in the tournament, and four other sides have over double the number

- 9 line breaks in three games, the fewest of the six nations.

That they are so successful speaks to current rugby laws as well as the brilliant kicking game they have.

The Ulster coach said this week "The current laws of rugby are well behind smart-thinking coaches like Joe Schmidt and the rapid development of organised defensive systems. Smart coaches are manipulating the laws so running rugby is penalised and a kicking game is rewarded."

If this is the game though where more than playing the percentages is required, and to think this you have to hope Wales try to play expansively, then there is little in the "attacking" statistics above to suggest that Ireland will get the better of Wales.

10 points Wales to win by 1-12 points at 2-1 with William Hill

 

England v Scotland

Scotland are a frustrating team to watch. Expansive and talented, with finally some oomph in the back-line the promise of an encouraging Autumn has evaporated in three successive losses in the Six Nations and on the last two occasions, the home defeats to Wales and Italy, watching the side has resembled looking on at a toddler on a bike when you take the training wheels off. You know that eventually it will all be fine but just in the short term its all very wobbly and you might need the elastoplasts handy. So it was in both the last two defeats when defeat was plucked from the jaws of probable victory as the bicycle crashed over onto the pavement.

In essence Scotland lack gamecraft and lack experience of winning. England meanwhile have responded to signs of inexperience of their own in Dublin. Brown and Lawes are back, with Wood on the bench and at Twickenham they should perform much better again

The problem if you are expecting England to rebound strongly is that this is pretty much priced in, and the recency of Scotland's recent disappointments weigh large on prices where England are 1/10 outright and no less than 16 point handicap favourites. England should win, but I don't think they will do so by more than 2 scores, especially if Scotland play the sort of rugby that they are capable of which will threaten tries

10 points England to win by 1-12 points at 2/1 William Hill


 

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This brief article stems from me having to teach myself American odds a while ago!

There are three ways that odds will be specified depending on bookmaker and the market they operate in. They are American, Decimal and Fractional.

+200

This is known as “American Style” odds.  It is based on betting or winning $100.  For American odds that are positive, such as +200, then it is based on betting 100 units, say dollars.  At +200 if you bet $100, then you will win $200 if your team prevails.  If the American odds is negative, such as -200, then it is based on how much you have to wager to win $100.  At -200 you would wager $200 to win $100 if your team prevails.

3.05

This is known as “Decimal Style”, and most frequently seen on the exchanges and something with which most of us will be familiar. 

2/1
This is known as “Fractional Style”. Fractional odds are not used very often outside of the UK and Ireland but of course it is our bread and butter. 

Converting American style odds to Decimal odds and vice versa

To convert American odds to Decimal, simply divide an underdog's price (positive odds) by 100 and add 1, or divide the favourite's price (negative odds) into 100 (after dropping the minus-sign) and add 1. To convert decimal odds of less than 2.0 to American, subtract 1 and divide into -100. For odds greater than 2.0, subtract 1 and multiply by 100.

To give an example American odds offered for a team to win (a favourite so American odds are negative) are -250. We lose the minus sign and it's (100 / 250) + 1 equals 1.40. And for positive odds we take the other side to win, an underdog, odds are +400, it's (400/100) + 1 equals 5.00.

To convert Decimal odds to American we take odds for a win which is offered at 1.40, so under 2.00. It's 100/ (1.40 - 1) equals 250. Now for odds over 2.00 we take the other side to win at odds 5.00, so it's (5.00 - 1) x 100 equals 400.

Converting Fractional odds to Decimal odds and vice versa

We divide two sides of Fractional odds to get a fraction and add 1. A favourite to win in Fractional odds is valued at 2/5, for example. It's 2/5 equals 0.4 + 1 equals 1.40.

Converting Fractional odds to American and vice versa

American odds that start with a + sign show you how much money you will make for every 100 bet, not including your original 100. To work out the fractional odds simply divide the expected profit by 100. So for +150, (150/100 = 1.5/1). And now multiply both sides by 10 to get 15/10. To work out the decimal odds just add the two fractional odds together (1.5 +1 = 2.5).


What else is on Betting Emporium?

Cricket World Cup: Analysis of the World Cup in Australia and New Zealand, free to access here

Premier League Statistical Analysis: You can read this here still FREE to all registered users


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The Road to Riches: Weekend 7th-8th March

Posted on 1 Mar 2015 11:41 in Weekly Articles "Road to Riches" by Rich 'Tighty' Prew

Coming up this weekend

- Football, QPR v Tottenham is the only Premier League match alongside the FA Cup Quarter finals and the football league programme 

- Cricket, the 2015 Cricket World Cup continues this weekend. Pakistan v South Africa and Australia v Sri Lanka are key group games

- Racing, ahead of the Cheltenham festival, includes national hunt meetings at Sandown, Chepstow and Ayr.

- Tennis, the Davis Cup World Group 1st Round matches around the world

- Golf, the World Golf Championships - Cadillac Championship at the Trump National Doral in Florida.


Free Tips of the Week   

Later in this week's blog I have written about betting on F1 and the variety of markets available both on races and the season as a whole. For this week's free tip section, a quick summary of suggested ante-post bets for the F1 season.

Winter testing results are keenly analysed for the likely trends for the season ahead. They can be difficult to interpret, teams can "sandbag", develop their cars at different rates and carry varying levels of fuel but nevertheless we can still look at the outcomes and compare to betting markets.

The major trends this winter as follows:

- Mercedes remain the quickest package. On the soft tyre faster than any other car even when their competitors were running the much quicker super-soft, which Mercedes did not run all winter

- Hamilton did a race simulation run at the second test on which he was more than 0.8 seconds a lap on average faster than Red Bull's Daniel Ricciardo

- Mercedes appear to have made a car that last year produced one of the most dominant seasons in F1 history even faster. As Hamilton said, when asked for his impressions of the new car: "Like last year's car but better."

- Behind Mercedes, the next few teams look tightly bunched. Williams, Ferrari and Red Bull are in this pack.

- Times suggest that Williams have an advantage over Ferrari of anywhere between 0.2-0.4 seconds. Indications are that Williams' fastest times this winter were on full qualifying, low-fuel specification though

- Ferrari have improved their engine, their weakest link last year. Ferrari have added as much as 80bhp compared to 2014

- The Red Bull chassis again appears strong, but Renault has made the smallest gains of any manufacturer over the winter - only 30bhp or so - with the result that their works team looks to have fallen further behind Mercedes, with upgrades only due in the summer.

- Huge teething problems for the new McLaren Honda

Relating that through to the markets:

- All set to be Rosberg v Hamilton Mark 2. I think the signs are that Mercedes further ahead than they ended last season. Hamilton is 4/6, Rosberg 5/2. Whilst Hamilton is a fraction quicker, and a more aggressive racer there will almost certainly be a time this season when Rosberg will trade favourite, 5/2+ is a decent price for only a marginal underdog who led the championship for long periods last year.

- "Without Mercedes" markets: Six drivers sub 10-1, and that includes Alonso (who misses the first race and anyway will be a long way behind by the time McLaren are competitive), Raikkonen (who won't be on an equal footing with Vettel) and Massa (beaten by over 50 points by Bottas last season in identical cars). That leaves Ricciardo, Vettel and Bottas. Bottas, undoubtedly a potential world champion on a 3-5 year view, was a potential play at 9/2 less than a week ago but has been backed into 5/2 favourite. Looking at prices now, Vettel offers most value. The Red Bull is underpowered and the Ferrari is close to Williams already, with more to come

Formula One 2015 Season Ante post:

20 points Nico Rosberg to win the Drivers Championship 3.9 Betfair (5/2 Betfair Sportsbook or Bet365 is a lower price limit)

10 points Sebastian Vettel to win the Drivers Championship w/o Mercedes 3/1 Ladbrokes (5.0+ in small size on Betfair)


Cheltenham Festival (Tues 10th - Fri 13th Mar 2015)

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Premier League Darts (5th Feb-21st May 2015)

The 10 player tournament is being held on 16 successive Thursday nights from Feb 5th through to May 21st 2015.

Nigel Seeley is providing weekly updates on all the matches.

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It only seems like weeks ago that Lewis Hamilton won his second Formula 1 World Championship but in just over a week we are into another season with the first Grand Prix of 2015 in Australia.

Here is a summary of some of the most popular ways to bet on the sport and what to look for. This will range from race outright winner through to matchup bets, podium finishers, ante-post & props.

Betting on Outright race winners

Bets on the outright winner of a race are the most popular type of F1 bet by volume. It’s the most basic type of bet where punters simply choose who they think will win the race.

In most F1 seasons, only 4-6 drivers will win races. It’s a top-heavy sport where a small number of drivers win due to performance disparities from teams at the top of the grid to those further back

Podium finishers

As the title implies, betting on drivers to finish in the top 3 in any given race. When one driver or team is offering poor odds as an outright winner, podium finisher bets can be the place to find value. This was often the case in 2014 with one dominant team, short-priced favourites and a variety of teams competitive for filling the podium depending on prevailing conditions and circuit characteristics.

F1 Match-Up Betting

A match-up bet is where two or more drivers are put into a grouping, and our job is to figure out which of those drivers will have the best finish. When the grouping consists of just two drivers, these are usually called head-to-head bets. When it’s 3 or more drivers in a group, they’re called match-ups.

Betting on match-ups eliminates most of the drivers in the field from your calculations.

Prop Bets

Prop bets are any types of bets that don’t fit into the standard betting categories. In F1, they are based on specific events or results that don’t relate to the race winner.

Examples of typical F1 prop bets:

  • Fastest Lap
  • Fastest Qualifier
  • First Driver to Retire
  • Over/under on season race wins per driver.

Ante Post Betting

World Drivers Championship markets for 2015 have been offered since the end of the last season. Some sites close these bets just before the season begins but most keep them open through into the season.

Since winning bets don’t pay out until the end of the season, which is 9 months long and since this is a sport where big priced underdogs are highly unlikely to win these types of bets are more popular with casual punters than professionals. This is especially the case in the last couple of years with Mercedes dominant under new regulations. For 2015 the market prices up Hamilton 4/6 Rosberg 5/2 18/1 bar with each way markets only offering two places

The World Constructors Championship is given to the top engine/car combination. Since the top driver accumulates the most points, the World Constructors Championship usually goes to the constructor of the car driven by the Drivers Champion. However, since this is a team championship, other drivers on the team must also perform well.

With that said, in 27 of the last 30 F1 seasons (1985-2014), the World Constructors Championship has been won by the team who also won the World Drivers Championship. This means that your Drivers Championship and Constructors Championship futures bets should typically coincide with each other.

For 2015 Mercedes are 1/20 to win the constructors 20/1 bar….

Unsurprisingly, bookmakers offer us markets without the favourite and because much of the field is bunched up behind Mercedes, these look much more competitive: 5/2 the field in the Drivers w/o Hamilton and Rosberg and 6/1 bar the top 5.


Betting Emporium results

The detailed results page has been updated as have the spreadsheets with the detailed bets. They can be found by clicking RESULTS

£10 per point on every recommended bet since  launch in Feb 2013 would be winning £14,173 (as at 18-2-15)

All bets have an ROI +5.24% and Horse Racing has an ROI +19.77%

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