Firedave trading Betfair with Bet Angel

Documenting my experiences with Bet Angel using BetFair. This will be used to record my progress as I take trading on full time.

Bet Angel - The most effective tool for Betfair
Aug 13, 2009

Day 14 & 15

The last couple of days haven't been great and have been fairly demoralizing. I have tried to take the positives from it and I feel I have learnt about the size of markets. During the day traders are putting large sums of money and if a £1000 is put in as a scalp by another trader it doesn't matter to them if the whole thing isn't taken as long as some of it from both sides is taken, and the excess is dumped as the market moves. This puts pressure on the small time traders. During the evening the markets tend to be a little more fluid and I believe are a better learning ground for small stakes. It is possible to fill gaps as well. As I near the end of this intensive learning experience about bet angel I feel good in that I can spend the next year trading evening races whilst working a daytime job. As the stakes increase it begins to be more needy to use the bigger markets diring the day so that the bets can be matched.

Yesterday was so bad I traded about 10 races and made a profit in one so I needed to stop. Today I had a pretty awesome strike rate but my losses were too big so what I need to learn is when to cut losses. That is my main aim over the next couple of months in order to start making money through trading.

Aug 11, 2009

Day 13

The races seemed to be more scalpable today than yesterday which helped to grind out some wins but there were still a fair few swinging markets. I feel as though I am improving in analysing how races will move in swinging markets but perhaps not backing myself on the big swinging markets. There is a tendency for races that have 1 or 2 clear favourites to have lots of swings represented by the long term graph. The market will oscillate if it has already oscillated and will tend to carry on coming in if that is what it has done already. These long term graphs give the flavour of the markets future and I often felt silly for not trusting my initial instincts because instead of minimizing losses I would be maximizing gains in the closing of trades.

So important advice to myself from the last two weeks is discipline, wait, and have confidence in my own predictions.

Aug 10, 2009

Day 12

What do I need to do to make money? Last week I had Goodwood which supported me when I was starting up but I was doing something accidentally that helped me. I was waiting. When I didn't feel comfortable about the stability of the market I did nothing. In that time I simply observed. When the markets all stable I get my money in numerous times, but when it moves about eratically with no real pattern it is important to wait until you understand what is happening.

Tomorrow's big weapon will be waiting, and it should improve my strike rate massively.

Well today I had a big loss but it was very important to try some new techniques on the swing markets. I found that I wasn't really getting the most from previous techniques since I was practically scalping the swings. Som e of my strategies worked pretty well and I made small gains on the swings but I would rather try to pick up the large swings. If I am to start making £300 a day then this is important to master. Anyways it didn't go great and some weird scenarios happened for instance when the two clear favourites came in; this made me scratch my head.

Adam Heathcote highlights all of the key entry and exit points in his blog and I consider the weight of monies and have at the races on to cover most of the points he covers. Having talked with my brother we have talked about using larger amounts of money to control the market better but although some strategies would improve I think I am still at a learning stage and would like to understand the markets better with less risk.

Will have the weekend off and be back fresh on Monday.

Today's p&l: -£9.15

I'm just putting my comments down so that someone else can try and answer these OR hopefully I will be able to provide better feedback when I am reading the markets better.

I just saw the 5:10 today which had the favourite at 5s and second at 6s,7s. There were a fair number of runners but could have had slightly more liquidity in the market. To me this looked like a good scalping market. What actually happened was that it drifted out to 7 and 8s. Just before the off, the commentator makes the comment that the 3rd favourite is ridiculously light on handicap which explains the movement.

How do we get a heads up in this scenario?

Are there less scalping markets?

Today I didn't trade well and had two big losses but because I closed it before going in play I didn't suffer such an enormous loss that I couldn't recover. I ended the day almost exactly even, it was a shame I couldn't turn a profit.

I think I'm generally on the right track because I think I now have the right discipline to now improve my trading ability. My biggest floor is in the way I approach swing markets. These are the ones that I'm losing big on. Scalp markets are fine and you can't really go wrong but I'm not cutting the losses. Wstching Peter Webb's videos there needs to be a judgement as to whether there is going to be a bounce and whether cutting losses is required or not. This is a "feel" thing that I haven't quite mastered although I now have a few pointers that I can now consider to judge the bounceability based on weight of money matched and unmatched.

Today's p&l: -£0.02

Today's motto was discipline and stopping anything go in-play I make profit. Trading is simple and talent is only a small part of what is required to be good at it. The most important thing is

discipline, discipline and discipline.

From all of my results that I've analysed I would have made a small profit over the week I've raded if I didn't let it go in play and just took the small losses when they come.For sure it sucks when you trade a race badly but its not +ev and horribly messes up a week's worth of trading when one race doesn't go your way.

As that meerkat on tv says, trading is "SHIMPLES". Maintain the discipline and you can build that bankroll.

Today's p&l: £3.90

There weren't too many raes on the card today but I traded it fairly well except for the race that went in play. Same old story but I got most of it back. It leads me to an important point about exiting. Before entering there must be a decisive plan for when it goes wrong. It is not the end of the world to have a 3 tick loss so that is the plan; re-read Adam Heathcotes blog on entry and exit points and then constantly make firm decisions about when I should exit the market when it doesn't go my way.

Today's p&l: -£2.56

Second big loss today. I up the stakes and I go from being pretty consistent to trying to close out in play. I got a little unlucky on the race today but that is exactly why you don't trade in play. The favourite had a 7 length headstart on the rest of the field at the start of the race. I closed at a very uncompetitive price. It wasn't my greatest hour.

After that race I reduced the stakes back to the £2 stakes and found that I was getting multiple turns in each race. It felt like the way I envisage trading to be. When it didn't go my way I closed out immediately and just got the turns in once there was consistency or readability back in the market. I didn't lose in a single race after the big loss but I had a strategy and I didn't freak out when the stakes got too high.

The rule I'll be playing with tomorrow is to close out when Peter Webb tells me over the recorded message so that there is no chance of it going in play and doesn't have me hope to close out without too much of a loss. Hell I can do this and a small loss I can get back but a big loss has me thinking how do I win this back. Today I was using 40p tick marks but I've decided to limit the stakes I use at the lower limits. Greening up around the 0.01 tick marks only halves at evens and stops me worrying about such large risk and can just concentrate on maximising the turns.

Today's p&l: about -£40 (can't bring myself to see the precise figure yet)

Today was a short trading day since I had a horrific race that didn't go right at all. I expected a horse to drift in play since it was a 2 mile + race and I figured I could sneak in a close there. Well it kept on coming in and I got out with a big loss of £20; not great for 60p tick sizes. Possibly poor decisions going in to play brought about a hangover from the day before. After the race I stopped and chilled out. Tomorrow, I will have my grinding mentality back and will make the right decision at the right time; hopefully.

Today's p&l: -£21.45

I increased the tick size up to 50p for my first Saturday. I took a few zeroes but only one loss which was overshadowed by some decent gains. It was interesting how the Thirsk races were getting more money ploughed into the market than some of the Galway races that were being shown on the tv. I feel I am beginning to be correct more often about the direction of the market although this "feel" has to be improved so that I am more confident to build the number of turns I get in the market. More practise required so that I can build the amount of money I am trading with.

Today p&l £5.56