GRAND NATIONAL TODAY: IT’S A NEW DAQMAN BET: How do astute professional punters capitalize on value? Daqman takes you through their thinking today and pledges to introduce a ‘double bonus’ bet on BETDAQ for the Aintree Festival, starting on Thursday.

GRAND NATIONAL TOMORROW: IT’S A NEW RACE: Tear up the old records, says Daqman; a new breed of National winners is emerging from a new type of race, a marathon gold cup. Read his ABC guide tomorrow with the ‘S’ word (safety) and the ‘X’ factor (stable form).


What do you fancy for the National? Do you know what price it should be? If you want to win money on horse races, those two questions should be inextricably linked. Unless you shop for value, you limit your chances. First you have to blow away the myths.

MYTH 1: You must show a level-stakes profit. This is a wise enough adage, for reasons I will explain, but there’s something missing from the original.

It’s like the one that goes ‘feed a cold and starve a fever.’ That should read: ‘If you feed a cold, you will have to starve a fever.’

The one about level stakes should read: A quick evaluation of a series of tips is whether or not it shows a level-stakes profit over a period of time.

That contains the vital phrase ‘over a period of time,’ to which all your betting should be aimed. But it also embraces such futility as getting 20 tips, of which 19 lose and one flukes it at 20-1.

A pound on each produces a level-stakes profit all right, but not much of a tipster, was he? You’d feel the same way if he gave 10 winners out of 20 when all the winners were 2-1 on. At £10 level stake, you lose £50 over the series of 20.

MYTH 2: So even the percentage of winners doesn’t matter if the prices are wrong and the stakes remain the same. Myth 2 (the better the percentage of winners, the more you win) is not always representative.

MYTH 3: But it’s equally wrong to complain about odds-on bets if those odds are actually better than they should be. Myth 3 (never bet at odds ‘on’) restricts you all the time to the area of the market where the layer ‘against’ has the advantage, the onus is not ‘on’ him, but on you.

But the backers’ answer must be the same: if you think a horse is a 2-1 on chance and you can get 4-5, grab it! Value is what value does to your wallet in the long term. In your 20-horse series, that difference could boost your earnings 30%.

MYTH 4: But, you say, when you read about telephone tipsters in the Press, they assert: ‘To level stakes’ and they stress ‘no odds on.’

That’s partly because the newspaper – and the tipster – wants a quick and easy way to show the reader he is genuine, and partly because both know the reader is gullible to the myths.

So, clever clogs Daqman, how can I make money betting? Answer: I can’t tell any one man: he has to work hard at it and find his own way of finding winners with, hopefully, my contributions some help to him.

But I can tell him a simple way to explode the myths, get on the right side and bet so that, if he does make money, he will make far, far more and will double his value.

Most of all, he will feel confident he’s doing the right thing. Fitness and confidence give you a massive start on other punters. And don’t forget that, on BETDAQ, you are trying to beat the other punters, not some anonymous bookie.

You are halfway there with BETDAQ, because of this exchange in a punter-friendly arena, whereas bookmakers build in a percentage against you, so you become a lonely gladiator against the lions.

You could get a total percentage probability of 107% for the Spring Mile in the BETDAQ orange on Saturday morning but the bookies Total SP was 129%, in effect nearly a third of your stake pinched from you.

So how else do you know value? What’s the real difference between 20-1 and odds on? It looks obvious. But what staking plan should you use, if level stakes are not the answer?

RULE 1: Firstly, you must know you are in a value area, like the BETDAQ orange. Discard a race if it’s hard to find the winner and the odds add up to a big percentage take-out against you.

RULE 2: You must, must know what price you want. Would you go shopping for a car if you didn’t know roughly the price of your model? Would you go to the first garage you saw and spend £10k when the next town has a showroom with an £8k offer?

Check out the car (horse) and make sure there is plenty under the bonnet, the engine is well prepared and maintained (by the trainer), can cruise and accelerate and maintain, or increase, its speed at a vital time.

Compare it with similar vehicles (horses carrying your cash!) and decide: 2-1 this is best, 5-1 that one is about right, 10-1 bar two. By all means decide on your usual investment (say you stake to win £100).

RULE 3 (THE SECRET): Now here’s the ‘double value’ trick. If you usually bet to win £100 and decide that Fair Dinkum is in the right ‘book’ of offers, has the right credentials and is, in your mind, a 2-1 chance, back it at any price better than 2-1.

RULE 4 (DOUBLE BONUS): Second part of the trick. Back it at YOUR price, not the layer’s offer or the bookie’s fixed odds. That means:

If you think Fair Dinkum is 2-1 and you want to back it to win £100 (i.e. £50 stake) and the offer is 4.0 or 3-1, KEEP your original stake.

Do NOT reduce your stake to £33 and target £100, back it at 3-1 with the same stake you would have placed at 2-1. Instead of reducing to 3 x 33 to win 100, bet ‘as you were’ 3 x 50 and win 150.

You have the double bonus – or should that read ‘treble bonus’ – of being in the right race, backing at a value price and betting the overs to acquire an extra reward.

At that rate alone, if your price was right, your long-term returns could be 50% better. You are out of the Volvo and sitting in the Merc, my friend!



KEY: PW – price wanted; W100 –stake wanted to win 100; BO – BETDAQ value offer; BET – retained stake; RES – result; WIN – winnings; BN – bonus


(For transparency, selections are staked to win 20 points at BETDAQ offers at the time they were made. The target may be raised to 30 points or more at major meetings and will include double-bonus bets from Thursday)

BET 6.25pts win TONVADOSA (2.40 Hexham)
BET 2pts win PEMBROKE PRIDE (3.30 Kempton)
BET 4.5pts win BALLYVONEEN (3.50 Plumpton)
BET 1.5pts win and place (Outsider Of The Day) BACK ON BAILEYS (4.00 Kempton)
BANKER: BET 20pts win (nap) DUTIFUL SON (4.30 Kempton)

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