Our next instalment of Lose Less kindly provided by the author, John Cutts.
Early reviews for the book have been very positive with an overall 4 star rating as I type.
If you can’t wait for 12 months you can get it in paperback or on Kindle here
CHAPTER 1 – The Seed Was Planted
In this chapter I will show you how and why we began to think we could become pro gamblers. The taster was a run of 19 winners out of 21 runners.
But first let me introduce myself so you can understand how my brother and I got into serious betting.
I am John Cutts and, along with my brother, Mark, we owned a small glazing company in Stockport, Cheshire in the UK before semi retiring to Brittany, France in 2012.
We are both in our early to mid-60’s (only 15 months between us) and have been interested in horse racing betting since our teens (Red Rum, in the 1973 Grand National when I was 16, was my first bet and when that won, I was hooked – 25p each way!)
From those days up to the late 80’s/early 90’s we were Saturday punters who would pick our horses out of the Sporting Life then sit down at home or in the pub to watch the ITV 7 in the old days, and then Channel 4 Racing since 1984 and now ITV Racing.
In Autumn 1991 we were forced by economic necessity, (both of us landed up on the dole but Mark got a good redundancy pay off from the then CEGB – Central Electricity Generating Board for younger readers!) to find an alternative to wage labour.
Living in Greater Manchester at that time did not present many decent full-time job opportunities! So, we decided to try what we thought we knew about – horse racing betting.
We had read all those telephone tipster ads in the Sporting Life, and more importantly had made a most unlikely friend in our local pub – a chap whose brother was a vet and worked for several horse racing trainers at the time.
He gave us some fantastic winners that I still remember from all those years ago. Lochsong, (every time she won from the 1992 Ayr gold Cup at 10/1 onwards), Branston Abby at 10/1, Palacegate Jack 14/1 and the Irish super mare Kooyanga when she won the 1992 Coral Eclipse spring to mind. Plus, many more.
Great days! And not only were we profiting from these and many more winners, so were our subscribers as, by then, we had several of them paying the odds to a fiver to our Racing advisory Service, The Inner Circle. (Mary Reveley’s 1991 Cambridgeshire winner Mellottie which won at 10/1 just sprang to mind also, but enough nostalgia! Sniff.)
Our friend never bought a drink while we were in the pub, which was often, and he seemed to speed up when we entered!
We were making a half decent living from backing the horses and running the service, but all good things must come to an end and our friend’s brother moved abroad and out of horse racing all together.
However, all was not lost as, during our Inner Circle phase, a bloke called Eric rang and asked would we like to combine our inside info with his placing bets for us using a novel method whereby losers were turned into non-runners (I will show you how to do this later in the book). The guy was a maths professor and a staking genius, but he couldn’t pick winners to save his life. We teamed up – we provided the winners and he put the bets on.
Eric was a shrewd gambler who had all sorts of stake saving strategies. For example, instead of a Yankee, back 4 selections as 6 doubles but in a way that if any 2 win you not only get your double paid out at full odds but your 5 losing stakes returned as well!
We are going to write a separate Ebook/PDF on this, but the principles are exactly the same as we show for backing singles this way in Chapter 13.
When it is ready, I will send you the link to it, but you will need to be on our email list which you can join by copying and pasting the following link into the browser at the top of any web page: To learn this, go to: https://bit.ly/3HG7Zvb
If you are reading the paperback version, you will need to type the same link, exactly as it appears above, into your browser at the top of any webpage.
As a mathematician Eric’s focus was on the bottom line and it did not matter to him which game.
He considered – very much against popular opinion – roulette to be the “straightest” game as there is only a 2.73% inbuilt advantage for the casino (in the UK). Whereas with horse racing you must overcome an over-round of 1 – 2 per cent per horse.
Also, a 9% betting tax was in force then, which Eric got around by backing in doubles so that there was no tax to pay on the second leg.
Incidentally, I still use his roulette system to this day and have come home with more money than I set off with, more often than not.
He was also a keen racegoer.
Not long after meeting Eric, and collaborating on selections and staking, (with some success it should be said), he came back from Haydock with what seemed an incredible tale. He had met a man there who we have always referred to as “the London Bloke”.
This guy was a multi-millionaire property dealer who made a lot of money on the side out of horse racing as a hobby, using a system for which he had paid £10,000 cash on the car park of that very same Haydock racetrack four and a half years earlier.
We still call him the London Bloke today – decades after we got to know his real name!
All of us, Eric included, were, to say the least, sceptical when he offered us a free trial in order that we would place his bets. We had nothing to lose though so we resolved to place the bets and keep a record for a month. We kept backing them for him (not a penny on for ourselves) and they kept winning.
It almost became boring to win in almost every race. “Lucky streak”, “fluke”, “they can’t carry on like this forever”, were some of the printable remarks we made. But by the end of the month, he had backed 19 winners out of 21 selections! And one of the 2 losers was beaten just a head at 6/1 (Tutusixtysix, August 1993).
This was amazing, none of us had ever seen anything like it before, but the London bloke said 80% of the horses he had backed since he bought the system, four and a half years earlier, had won, and he didn’t back odds-on.
We, for the first time, began to think we could make a living from just backing horses.
We were about to be educated!
CHAPTER 2 – The Bubble Burst Yet…
Having cleared it with our new friend, we decided not only to back his selections but to place a half page ad in the Sporting Life offering, effectively, through post-dated cheque, a month’s free trial.
Our new service was called Winners. We ended up holding around 50 post-dated £100 cheques. All we needed now was a repeat of last month and we would be earning £5000 per month (this was 1993) at least and our own winnings to boot! Some hope! The strike rate fell to ‘only’ 55% at an average SP of 11/10 and the cheques were returned.
My brother and I never got to meet the London Bloke. Everything went through Eric who was a little on the reserved side. I would have asked to have a look at his system to see if we could help identify a reason for the sudden fall in strike rate.
This was September 1993 and it coincided precisely with the 10lbs rise in handicap ratings for jumps horses that was introduced back then. It was the jumps horses that were letting the side down, falling from 80% to 45% compared to the flat which only dropped from 80% to around 70%.
It could have been a bad run. Even something with an 80% strike rate can have a bad month. But Eric would not hear of me talking to ‘the London Bloke’ so that was the end of that phase.
But we had seen it done. It was possible to achieve such results.
We were deflated yet inspired at the same time.
It wasn’t just a good run. Eric got to know this man well over a couple of years and he was adamant that those results were not at all unusual and we trusted Eric’s judgement implicitly. We had the bug more than ever now.
The last we heard of the London bloke was that the poor guy had a stroke and was in bad health. We later heard from Eric that he had died.
Eric, who was in his sixties when we met him, then died age 73 in 1999.
Since those days we have been on a quest to discover the rules of the system. The only clues the London Bloke ever left us were that he bought two papers a day, the Racing Post and the Daily Mail, the selection was the best horse in the race, and that when we discovered it we would kick ourselves because it was so simple.
In the mid – nineties, Mark and I set up in the glazing business (that is Mark’s trade) so we had to research part time.
Now, I do not want to disappoint, so I must inform you that to date we have not discovered the complete system… but we have learnt an awful lot trying!
We have also discovered other systems during the search, which, though falling short of his stratospheric standards, still provide plenty of winners.
The most famous one is our Bet2 Win system, which we unveil in the next chapter.
Until next time…
We will continue our serialisation next month, if you would like to read the whole book right away you can buy it here