Author Archive: Peter Webb

Loved sports and statistics all my life and eventually found a way to make a living from it.

On this blog I chat about my experiance in the market and my opinions.

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Betfair shock market with Paddy Power merger

Betfair shock market with Paddy Power merger

It’s not often you get a full blown WTF moment, but we got one this morning with news that former Paddy Power COO, Breon Corcoran, who is now Betfair CEO. Has agreed to a takeover / merger with Paddy Power.

It is being positioned as a merger, but the simple fact is that Betfair will be a minority in the new partnership only holding a 48% stake of the company, Paddy Power would hold a 52% stake. Paddy Power are taking over Betfair

26/08/2015 | By | Reply More
Football is getting more boring

Football is getting more boring

I’ve been doing a lot of work on football markets recently. Once the evening horse racing is out of the way, I’ll start turning my attention to football properly. At the moment I am dabbling and revisiting old material and updating new stuff for the season ahead. I’ll miss the odd opportunity, but I always feel the need to improve on prior years.

I was browsing goal data today and thought I’d have a look at how goals have changed

23/08/2015 | By | Reply More
Predicting chaotic markets

Predicting chaotic markets

Took one look at the racing card this morning and was a bit frustrated. Yes, lots of racing on which is great, but just too much. My spreadsheet gave me the following dialogue: -

“There are 587 runners today over 61 races, an average of 9 runners per race.Based upon long term averages today’s racing is likely to exhibit much less volatility against what we would typically expect to see.If all races start on time, then there will be 11

22/08/2015 | By | Reply More
The curious story behind Brentford & Midtjylland

The curious story behind Brentford & Midtjylland

Midtjylland meet Southampton this evening in the Europa league. When Saints drew Vitesse in the last round I wasn’t pleased they had drawn the top seeded side. As the draw came out for the next round I had have an eye on Midtjylland. Sods law dictated that they were immediately paired with Southampton. Why my interested in this club? For that you need to look to Matthew Benham.

Benham is an Oxford gradute turned pro gambler. He has fingers

20/08/2015 | By | Reply More
Ebor, Ebore or Ffast Loss?

Ebor, Ebore or Ffast Loss?

Summer racing isn’t over quite yet and today kicks of the Ebor meeting at York. I’ve traditionally done OK at this festival each year so I am looking for something above average this week.

The Ebor meeting can yield some good results, but nothing is ever guaranteed and this meeting can be a bit random at times so it’s probably not going to be all plain sailing. It should be better than what we have been seeing recently though.

Traditionally

19/08/2015 | By | Reply More
Sunday Soccer Stats

Sunday Soccer Stats

These stats are brought to your by our friends over at Football Form Labs. Check out their site and the powerful software that sits behind these comments. Football form labs is on offer at the moment, big savings available during August.

Man City v Chelsea, Sun 16:00

Man City have been made favourites for the title after their comfy win in the opening round while Chelsea could only pick up a point at home. While City looked impressive against West Brom …

15/08/2015 | By | Reply More
Dustin Johnson is most likely a lay

Dustin Johnson is most likely a lay

First off here are the positive movers from yesterday’s play at the US PGA golf championship, the “fourth” major. Returns from trading £10 level stakes.

Jason Day – 14 to 7 : £10.00
Rory McIlroy – 13.5 to 10.5 : £2.86
Dustin Johnson – 17.5 to 5.7 : £20.70
Justin Rose – 22 to 14.5 : £5.17
Matt Kuchar – 70 to 25 : £18.00
Martin Kaymer – 85 to 65 : £3.08
Paul Casey – 100 to 80 :

14/08/2015 | By | Reply More
Knee jerk reaction to new football season

Knee jerk reaction to new football season

Not a trick question, but how many games are there in the season?

Well there are 38 in the premier league and 46 in the other three tiers. So if you win the first match of the season what impact would that have on your chances? Not much you would think. Three points divided by 38 isn’t exactly a large number, but last weekend we saw quite a large reaction to some mundane first day results.

Chelsea’s difficulty in breaking down Swansea caused

13/08/2015 | By | Reply More
Will models like Augur replace Betfair?

Will models like Augur replace Betfair?

Back during the dot-com boom in the year 2000 disintermediation was a keyword that was floating around.

If you used word disintermediation in a sentence along with the words  dot-com, it was highly likely that you’d be able to secure funding for your project the matter how much money you asked for, or how stupid the idea was. Disintermediation was the posh word for what is now known to become as peer-to-peer engagement. Basically two people trading services or goods

12/08/2015 | By | Reply More
Saturday Soccer Stats

Saturday Soccer Stats

Saturday Soccer stats is back and more will follow this season as we have been busy at work during the off season. Ratings will follow later. We are just slightly behind where we need to be at the moment on some new stuff. But it’s probably not a problem as you are no doubt getting drowned in other stuff today! We have done some excellent work in the off season. Tomorrow on the blog, something really interesting for you; today, some …

08/08/2015 | By | Reply More
How to win the league

How to win the league

As the new season is upon us all football fans up and down the country will no doubt have fresh hopes about what the season will bring. Transfers have been done and hopes raised. But what is it that makes a team successful? What is the most defining characteristic?

The defining characteristic

As is well known, a lot of club revenue gets spent on wages to attract top players. This is in the hope that buying talent buys performances. Quite

07/08/2015 | By | Reply More
Punting on politics

Punting on politics

It wasn’t that long ago that we had fun and games trading the general election, but now another political market has risen to the fore.

The next Labour leader market is proving quite an interesting one. Yvette Cooper is providing the female interest, Andy Burnham is providing a centre left approach and then we have Jeremy Corbyn who is stoking up the far left of the party. There has been a lot of discussion on the topic and a thread is

06/08/2015 | By | Reply More
Charity shield

Charity shield

This write up is brought to your by our friends over at Football Form Labs. Check out their site and the powerful software that sits behind these comments.

The Ashes may be in full swing but the Premier League season is just around the corner and Sunday’s traditional curtain raiser sees Chelsea and Arsenal give a preview of what to expect in the coming months.

It’s been almost four years since the Gunners last took down Chelsea but with Jose

02/08/2015 | By | Reply More
An evening off?

An evening off?

The Sussex stakes at Goodwood yesterday proved to be a very interesting market. I posted all of the charts from that race on a Facebook page for you to have a look at, but I felt this was one of the most readable markets of the week so far. Most of the other racing yesterday was a little bit quiet, but Galway gives a boost in the evening.

Today we have an interesting card as Galway is running during the afternoon …

30/07/2015 | By | Reply More
Galwood day one

Galwood day one

It was a slow but interesting start to the week at Goodwood and Galway.

The Tuesday is always a bit tricky because the racing cards are a little bit weaker on these days. As a case in point, the top races today dwarf the the whole card from yesterday at both courses.

We have a group one race at Goodwood today, the Sussex stakes, that should prove interesting trading fodder and we also have a Galway plate. Both of these …

29/07/2015 | By | Reply More
Trading Good-way

Trading Good-way

From a trading perspective I like multi day high quality meetings. They usually throw up some good opportunities and are a welcome addition to the month.

Goodwood

As you may know these higher quality meetings produce extra volume and that can change the characteristics significantly. But don’t let Goodwood fool you into thinking it’s the same as a Royal Ascot or Cheltenham, it behaves very differently. Goodwood benefits from decent volume but it’s not as much as some major meetings. Therefore it …

27/07/2015 | By | Reply More
The rise of football analytics

The rise of football analytics

Back in the late eigthies and early nineties when I was trying to win the football pools, nobody really understood what was going through my head.

Not interested

I remember writing to a football magazine and explaining to them how I carefully mapped out what happens during a match. I carefully laid out an extensive document talking about how the time of the goal influences the outcome of a match and how a red card can significantly alter that match …

26/07/2015 | By | Reply More
My life on the trading desk of a big bookmaker

My life on the trading desk of a big bookmaker

Introduction by Peter

Some one recently joined me in helping prep for the new football season. His former job was on the trading desk at a big bookmaker, I thought it may be interesting for you to hear his story. With ‘Britain at the bookies’ on TV, I think it makes it even more relevant. First we start with some background: -

Life before Betfair

I left school with absolutely no idea of what I wanted to do for a career. …

25/07/2015 | By | Reply More
Ladbrokes and Coral agree £2.3bn merger

Ladbrokes and Coral agree £2.3bn merger

News out this morning that after talks, Coral and Ladbrokes will go ahead with their merger.

To fund the deal Ladbrokes will offer 93 million new shares to investors, representing 10% of the company. Ladbrokes will issue new ordinary shares to existing Coral shareholders representing 48.25% of the enlarged company. Existing Ladbrokes shareholders will then own 51.75% of the enlarged company.

The move will mean that the new company will be bigger than the current incumbent William Hill. In terms of high

24/07/2015 | By | Reply More
Britain at the bookies

Britain at the bookies

Couldn’t help but notice a new TV series on BBC ‘Britain at the bookies’, if you are in the UK you can view it here: -

http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b063ly3s/britain-at-the-bookies-episode-1

It seemed a pretty fair and balanced first episode comparing life at the head office of a bookie, with the life of a shop and the realities of problem gambling. I think a fair picture was painted.

It was disheartening to see the jobless guy withdraw his benefits check then head straight to

21/07/2015 | By | 2 Replies More
Open golf final round

Open golf final round

Couldn’t help but revisit the stats and check where we stand as we head, finally, into the final round at St’Andrews.

Some key stats: -

  • Average winning score at St’Andrews has been 11 under par, biggest was 19 under, smallest 5 under back in 1970. All recent scores have been much lower, apart from the 6 under in 1995.
  • Average score per round for the Open is 69 to 69.50 per round, basically under 70.
  • The winner has averaged 70.50 at
20/07/2015 | By | Reply More
Betdaq and Irish racing

Betdaq and Irish racing

We have a confluence of opportunity today, but unusually, it will be pronounced on Betdaq.

To understand why we need to look at two factors. Prior to 2008 I wasn’t really active on Betdaq. I took an interest in 2008, but it was pretty quiet. However my hand was forced in 2011, so I started to set about doing something in earnest from that point. Volume, noticeably on horse racing has been rising steadily since then to the point where

18/07/2015 | By | Reply More
Open Golf – Tee time effect

Open Golf – Tee time effect

As expected the Scottish Summer has set in at The Open this morning and badly affected play. The suspension this morning will obviously have an impact as the organiser try and shovel 156 players through the tee and finish before it gets dark.

Keeping an eye on the local weather will give you a clue as to how this will impact players. Obviously if conditions are horrific versus benign much later that’s not going to favour early starters. At golf tournaments I

17/07/2015 | By | Reply More
Open Golf

Open Golf

Golf returns to the home of golf this week. I’m desperate to get to St’Andrews, but will have to wait till it comes back on rotation.

The British Open is different from other majors in that it is played on rotation schedule across a number of ‘links’ courses in the UK. Links courses are traditionally near the sea, are near or on dunes, have an uneven surface and a sandy soil. This is in stark contrast to a lot of ‘modern’ courses

16/07/2015 | By | Reply More
Liquidity at the Open Golf

Liquidity at the Open Golf

The Open is almost upon us and while I realise it’s not a burning question on everybody’s mind, I thought I’d help you find the best time to take a position the market before it starts.

One of the problems with Golf is that early start in the morning. It will be around 06:30 for the Open. That prevents most people getting up early to stick a position on. That more or less includes me. I wasn’t sure though if I

15/07/2015 | By | Reply More
Using Advanced Automation on Bet Angel

Using Advanced Automation on Bet Angel

We receive a lot of requests on how to create rules using our Advanced Automation feature. The creation of a rule is a fairly simple process provided you apply basic logic to it. We always advise clients to write down their requirements in logical statements describing the process. You must bear in mind the software cannot make decisions for itself, you must instruct it what to do and then it will act.

The possibilities are endless but let’s start with

14/07/2015 | By | Reply More
The trading dead zone

The trading dead zone

It doesn’t happen often, but now and again all things conspire to produce a dead zone in the markets. Some are worse than others, but we are in a dead zone at the moment.

First off, this relates to the racing markets. Racing markets are seasonal and peak and trough around major meetings. The last was, obviously, Ascot. So you can get a trough before a major meeting, but you almost certainly get one after it.

Summer racing can be …

08/07/2015 | By | Reply More
7/7 – Why I never turn my phone off, ever….

7/7 – Why I never turn my phone off, ever….

Most people know the significance of this date, but for a small group of traders this date has even more significance.

Our story of this day

It started the same as any other day. I was scheduled to do a talk in central London on guess what, trading on betting exchanges. I took the train in central London, as did my delegates and after switching from overground to underground I remember clearly looking at the clock on the exit at

07/07/2015 | By | Reply More
Tennis trading primer

Tennis trading primer

Just a quick video as we have had a lot of people asking how you trade Tennis. So we have produce just a short primer giving you some ideas and a short discussion on Tennis, we hope it’s useful.

06/07/2015 | By | Reply More
Today could be your independence day

Today could be your independence day

Happy 4th of July to our American users. Hold on we don’t have any (yet)!

But the independence I am talking about takes a slightly different slant anyhow.

When we first designed Bet Angel it was a very simple one click interface. As time evolved we branched the product out to include more and more features, it was a reflection of our journey through the markets.

One of the early features we put into Bet Angel was the link to

04/07/2015 | By | Reply More
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