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Keeping Records of Horse Racing Bets

When it comes to winning at sports betting, there is a lot of advice I repeat across the board. It is important to do your research, have a betting system, and maintain a money management system. But it is also very important to find a way to track the success or failure of the systems you are using. And that is where keeping some kind of a journal comes into play. That is important with every sport, and horse racing is no exception.


When you do not keep records, you are really throwing your money into the wind and hoping for the best. This is true even if you are using a system, because you are counting on the compendium of information in your head to accurately reflect reality. Betting on horse racing requires keeping track of a lot of information. You may think that you are remembering it all properly, but chances are good that you are forgetting a great deal.


Imagine if you thought for example that you had a knack for handicapping mature horses, and that you are terrible at handicapping juvenile horses. So you tend to shy away from juvenile races, and stick with races for experienced horses. You are making money overall, so you are not too concerned.


But what if you have it backwards? What if you were to start keeping a journal, and then, looking back, you discover you are actually better at handicapping juvenile horses than mature horses? Think about all the money you forfeited by continuing to focus on races that you're not as good at handicapping. Even if you have been profitable, you could have been much more profitable.


This is the power of keeping records of your horse racing bets. You get to find out what you are really good at, and what you really should stay away from or look for a way to improve.


What kind of information should you include in your horse racing logs? There are a lot of punters who keep their information very basic. They may only include information such as the date, the track, and the type of race.


I highly recommend that you go into a good deal more detail than that. At the very least, I would include all of the following:

•           The date of the race

•           The racecourse location

•           The track and its condition

•           The type of race

•           The horse you bet on and its condition

•           The jockey and trainer for the horse

•           The type of wager you took

•           A summary of why you took the bet (the justification for wagering)

•           The result of the bet (win or lose)

•           The money you staked

•           How much you won or lost


Keep this information in the format of the table. That way you can quickly and easily reference it across different races and bets that you have taken. If you keep it in a spreadsheet, you can even use that spreadsheet to run calculations and generate useful statistical feedback.


I also suggest that either separately, or in the same document, writing down more information in the longer version of the summary concerning how and why you bet. In the summary you can go into a little more detail on some of the research that you did and the exact reason why you were sure that your wager would be profitable. If you lost, you can delve deeper into your analysis to explore why that happened and how you can avoid it in the future.


This is also a good place to talk about different factors that may have influenced your betting that fall outside of your system. For example, maybe you were emotionally invested in a particular horse winning, and that caused you to bet a certain way. Or perhaps you had too much to drink and that impacted your judgement. Noting these factors prevents you from making a mistake in your analysis and thinking that another factor was responsible for your win or loss. It also helps to identify behaviours that may be costing you money.


Many punters are surprised at the discoveries that they make when looking back over their horse racing betting records. You may find out that there are certain types of races and horses which you do well betting on, and others which you should steer clear of. You may discover that you lose bets when you become emotionally involved, and that you win bets when you bet on races you have no personal stake in. You might find that certain money management techniques work while others fail. You could learn that you wager better online than you do in person.


No matter what you find out, you can use this information to optimise your betting techniques and choose events to wager on which you are likely to win. Over time, you should find yourself winning more and more this way. Keeping a journal takes time and effort, but it can pay off in a huge way!


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Gambling on the Internet

A few things to consider when gambling online:

  • Take advantage of first deposit bonuses
  • Have a budget and stick to it
  • Don't lose more than you can afford
  • When drunk, don't bet!
  • Don't chase losses
  • Bet on markets you know well
  • Don't abuse bonuses