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By Horses vs. Sports Betting
dvlander
9/19/2013
11:58:51 AM
Hi JCapper users. I havenít posted on this site for a long time and the obvious reason is that I no longer wager on the horses. That being said, I think that the JCapper program itself is an amazing creative accomplishment by Jeff and it certainly gives any player the best chance to succeed. The program itself had nothing to do with my decision and in fact, it made the decision an agonizing one. Not only is JCapper itself superlative, Jeffís ongoing support in both technical and strategic horseplaying terms are so far beyond what any customer has a right to expect. My reasons for abandoning horses were my own moderate results coupled with disenchantment with the thoroughbred industry for all the reasons that are well-publicized.

A long time ago, I switched my focus to sports betting and in particular College Basketball. Now obviously, sports wagering is still not legal in most places although Iím holding out hope that the landscape will change at some point in my lifetime. In no way shape or form am I a programming genius like Jeff, but I do know my way around Excel and VBA. I put together a data mining application for my own use and have four full seasons of basketball results for all 340+ Division I teams. No matter how the program ends up performing, I have no intention to ever market it.

Iím writing this more as a ďwhy did I switchĒ episode. Number one on the list for me is that when I make a sports wager, the odds donít change afterwards. I was burned so many times both ways when horse odds moved up or down after 1MTP or 2MTP. The most common frustration was taking a live horse at 6-1 that would be 5-2 by the time they ran. It also went the other way when Iíd have a minimum 8-1 automatic play that didnít fire but would be 13-1 by the time they ran.

The second significant challenge with horses is the 15% to 21% takeout plus breakage for straight bets and substantially more for exotics. Thatís a tough nut to crack for even the most successful players. Sports wagering generally has a takeout of 4.55% at your standard 11 to 10.

Finally with sports, you are wagering in a 2-horse field. You are not going to ever reap the massive longshot payoffs but you do not encounter the lengthy losing streaks either. From a psychological perspective, that seems to be a better fit for my persona. In my opinion, college basketball does have playable scenarios that do repeat historically. For example, how does a top 5 team perform after blowing out their most heated rival at home when their next game is against the worst team in the league on the road and they are a double-digit favorite? Those are the types of questions I am trying to answer.

Take care.

Dale


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