The home of intelligent horse racing discussion
The home of intelligent horse racing discussion

Losing Bets

Home Forums Archive Topics Losing Bets

Viewing 15 posts - 1 through 15 (of 92 total)
  • Author
  • #4022
    Nick Hatton
    • Total Posts 399

    I’ve pinched this idea from the BF forum as it lead to a really good discussion.

    The question is …….

    Can a losing bet be a good bet ?

    Sailing Shoes
    • Total Posts 368

    The simple answer is no.

    You can place a bet and learn something from placing that bet, but equally you could have learned the same thing from not placing the bet and simply watching the race/event in question.

    So, no a losing bet can NEVER be a good bet. 😎

    • Total Posts 1890

    I have to disagree with you on that one, Sailing Shoes.

    On the same basis, neither do I believe "paper betting" is a really effective form of practice – though it obviously must have some merits, by way of preparation for the real deal.

    Of course in the event,  you are always pleased if you avoid a loser, but that’s human nature – and not taking the long view that you must, if you aspire to make money at the game.  

    I think that committing real money in a consistent way is another matter altogether; the pressure can affect your thinking. If you’re on a losing run, you can either over-react and rashly commit even more of your dough – because "the balance of your mind has been disturbed!"; or you can either reduce your stakes excessively, so that when you have a winner, even at a decent price, you have underfunded your bet, or pike out altogether and not bet at all for the rest of the day.

    Jim JTS
    • Total Posts 841

    I’m going to ignore that question :scratchchin:  sometimes I worry about the betfair people :biggrin:

    • Total Posts 3697

    If one had arrived at the odds by calculation, in what might be termed a ‘value bet’ ie better odds than true chance, and the losing bet is part of a pattern of similar value bets, then yes it could be termed a good bet.

    Also if it is the very last bet in a string of losing bets with no intrinsic value within – then yes again…good…it is the last one. 😎

    • Total Posts 64

    Sailing Shoes,

    Your tag line says "failure is the mother of all success". (which BTW, is the second most annoying signature on here after the one that says "Always up for a giggle!") But you also say "you could have learned the same thing from not placing the bet". In other words, that it’s better not to fail.

    Which should we believe?

    I don’t know how that winking emoticon got in there, it was supposed to be a bracket.

    (Edited by ACR1 at 1:36 am on May 20, 2004)

    • Total Posts 38

    It cant have been a value bet at any point if it lost, you only think it is until the race is over.<br>  I dont see how a loser can be good bet in any shape or form. I have heard the odd compulsive say somthing along the lines of "at least that losers out of the way" before.:biggrin:

    Irish Stamp
    • Total Posts 3181

    Quote: from Jim JTS on 1:05 am on May 20, 2004[br]I’m going to ignore that question :scratchchin:  sometimes I worry about the betfair people :biggrin: <br>

    <br>Think they’re being brainwashed over on betfair.<br>Sounds very British though, "we did well but lost our money".


    • Total Posts 38

    I disagree thedarkknight, It is a good bet if it wins.  To know it is a loser would you bet on it, no, of course not. The question is being asked after knowing the result, ie lost. It was a bad bet that was value before the toss.<br>The coin example is also a bad one to use as you know the true odds. Racing and alike can only be an opinion. To the other extreme all casino bets are bad bets.

    • Total Posts 862


    The difference between the coin toss and an horserace is that there is an absolute 50% chance of your selection coming in on the toss of a coin, whereas if you have a horse priced up at evens yet are offered 5/4 the value you think you are getting may be value to you but not the layer, who may believe the horse’s true chances to be more like 6/4.

    You are quite simply assuming that your judgement is better than theirs and while on this occasion you might be correct, it takes a very confident attitude that this will continue over time.

    I actually agree with the theory but at the end of the day value is only in the eye of the beholder.


    • Total Posts 168

    I think your being a bit patronising TDK. To say that most bets people make are not value bets is wrong. It is obviously value to those who place the bet, and when the proceeds are in the pocket, well that just tells its own story. So all winning bets are value bets, you may not feel or think they are before or during a race, but ultimately they end up that way.

    Getting back to the original question. A losing bet can be of significant benefit to you, in that you will be watching the horse you put your money on very carefully, and may even choose to ignore the remainder. If you can see that this horse was unlucky in running or was finishing like a train then this imo is a pointer to the future. By simply watching the race with no bet on, you may miss this.

    • Total Posts 38

    You dont know the bet is going to win though do you. Bad luck in running , so what ,  that should have been factored into calculations before the bet was placed. If you could go back in time and re-run the losing race, why would the result be any different? I only put my money down, fun bets aside, when I cant see it getting beat and dont play percentages the way you obviously do.  If the question was is 6/4 about an estimated even money shot a good bet then yes but, it wasnt , it was a losing bet being a good bet.  Therefore the answer has to be no.

    Sailing Shoes
    • Total Posts 368


    I do make money from the game.


    I watch the races i’m interested many times over (when ATTHERACES was on) and take each horses run into consideration. So to say that you would pick up on something significant just because you’ve backed a certain horse is way off the mark.


    Agree with you, the question nearly answered itself.


    I shall change my tag, just for you. 😉

    (Edited by Sailing Shoes at 10:21 am on May 20, 2004)<br>

    (Edited by Sailing Shoes at 10:24 am on May 20, 2004)

    ricky lake
    • Total Posts 2724

    Think this is a depressing thread , we all back losers , and we lay some winners , what makes them memorable,or usefull , or indeed leess memorable and painful

    I dont know 😮

    All I can tell you is occasionally you come across a chance to make a season worth while in  one single stroke , like on Tues when I matched Croc Dundee in Goodwood at 72!!!  as we know he failed by a head

    I resisted the opportunity to back him for a place , as he was simply outstanding in the paddock

    Do I remember it !!! was it a significant bet ???

    most losses are glossed over , this one I will never forget !!



    • Total Posts 64

    Sailing Shoes,

    Sorry – a few drinks taken.

    I think the mistake is to take any one bet in isolation. In general, all bets made by a losing punter are bad bets even the winning ones. In fact, you could argue that the winning bets are worse in the long term for the losing punter as they just encourage the person to engage in an activity that is financially harmful to them.

Viewing 15 posts - 1 through 15 (of 92 total)
  • You must be logged in to reply to this topic.