Becoming a Professional Gambler

I found this article on Slipperytoad website, originally published by Punt.Com blog, and it makes fascinating if not a little pessimistic reading.

Forums, blogs, bookies and betting websites are full of people dreaming of becoming professional gamblers. Being your own boss, working when you feel like it, making loads of money and watching sports for a living is certainly appealing to most people. Let this post (and the rest of this blog) be a reality check.

I see a lot of people giving up jobs to do this after a short time trading. They think it’s easy and straight forward, they think it will last forever… They haven’t thought it through.

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I’ve been a professional gambler now for over 3 1/2 years. Before that I gambled for 2 years before I took the decision to do it. It was the biggest decision of my life, certainly not one I took lightly. Giving up a guaranteed income and job prospects to gamble with my own money was extremely risky to say the least.

When you give up your job, you’re not only going to be risking your money gambling, but your entire future job prospects. Let me tell you, gamblers are not viewed in the same way as someone who works in a normal job. Compare the reaction you get when you tell someone you are a gambler to when you tell them you work in a bank. Even if you compare it to being a “day trader”, the reaction is a mixture of contempt, fascination and disbelief.

Most people will flatly not believe you. Gamblers are the vagrants of society. The losers that hang around bookies, wasting their family income on an addiction. No one believes it is possible to win, and if you have – it’s just luck. Like it or not, this is how you will be viewed. Some will feel sorry for you, others will not give you the time of day. You are going to be one of society’s outsiders.

Family relationships can be strained and tested. It takes a lot of understanding from family and friends and this can weigh on your mind whilst you are gambling. A stable family life is important, it spills over into your work – few jobs are affected as much by this. You need stability and space to work well. And vice versa, a bad day at the office should not affect the way you treat those closest to you, can you really say that you won’t be in a terrible mood when you lose £xxxxx on some tennis player that gave up?

Your financial future is now uncertain. You are no longer contributing to society, you are not paying tax – an advantage to the gambler sure, but it doesn’t improve your self esteem and further enhances the feeling of being an outsider.

Try to borrow money from the bank? It’s easier said than done. This is why you need to try to secure your future financially as far in advance as you can before you make it your sole income

What about future job prospects? If you need to work again, do you really think future employers are going to be happy with you spending a year or two gambling for a living when they read your cv.

How much have you won before you turn pro? It’s hardly ever enough. You need to make many times your current income before you do it. Make sure you have savings that are stashed away, preferably making you a reasonable amount of interest. I might have turned professional a year before I did, but I had to make sure I was safe financially before I did so. Not only for my lively hood, but so that I could work confidently and without pressure. You cannot perform in this game if you are too worried about losing your hard earned cash. Pressure on your profit and loss is deadly.

What about when you do take the plunge, your day to day life is going to change dramatically in ways you may not have imagined. Interaction with other people becomes scarce. You will be spending long periods of time alone, clicking away staring at a screen all day. The temptation to live up to the stereotype is obvious. Why bother making an effort when you can get up, do some work and go back to bed again.. Discipline. Working alone throws up serious challenges. Your health and fitness can suffer drastically. The way you interact with other people can take a tumble. Prepare for this in advance.

It’s not all excitement and glamour. It can be downright boring doing the same things day in day out. Boredom for some gamblers can be their most dangerous adversary. You can end up working on things you don’t need to be. Betting too much and over trading for the sake of it.

Gambling certainly doesn’t owe you a living. A normal job pays you for turning up, no one’s going to do that here – they are going to try to take money off you for turning up. It’s you against a world of other people, all of whom have opinions, some of them most definitely better informed than you. Just how professional are you when it comes to the crunch, are you certain you are at the top of the tree? How consistent is your performance going to be to combat everyone else and stay ahead of the game. There are some brilliant brains out there trying to beat you at every turn – be wise to the available strategies and the people you are up against and give them respect – it’s your money and therefore livelihood they are after.

There are very few real professional gamblers, the reasons above outline why. It’s incredibly tough to do. You are going to be tested mentally every day and you will need to guard against developing bad psychological habits. There are reasons why gambling can cause problems for most people. There is a fine line between problem gambling, pathological gambling and professional gambling. Many professionals develop problems, be aware of the risks. Here’s a site about different types of gamblers. It suggests there are fewer than 50 gamblers in the US that make over $100,000 a year. With all the negative problems you can face as a professional gambler, you better make sure you are being compensated. Ask yourself what a fair amount is for enduring these problems, if you aren’t already making that then is it really worthwhile.

Think about your life situation and your family life. You are risking your money and theirs. I was fortunate when I began that I was young, single and in a job that didn’t pay that much and I was able to spend as much time as I liked pursuing it, without overheads and relationship damaging consequences. It’s extraordinarily time consuming to begin with, especially as you are going to have to work hard to increase from little to a sum of money suitable to work from. Don’t underestimate the time this takes, and the time you will be spending away from family chasing something that might not even work out.

I know this post is quite pessimistic. I think it’s supposed to be. I’ve heard it said before that professional gamblers are pessimists, I’m not sure I agree completely, but in this post I certainly think it’s a good idea to be. No matter how much you think you are ready, wait a while longer. Wait until you are sure you aren’t just lucky, then wait some more… Know why you aren’t plain lucky, and be big enough to admit defeat if you have been.

1:55 York Racing Tips (18th Aug) GOFFS PREMIER YEARLING STAKES (CLASS 2) (2yo)

Miss Infinity, Mark Johnston, two-year-old
This Goffs Yearling Stakes race is run over 6f on good to firm ground with nineteen entrants battling to win £147,540. 

A very competitive two-year-old race so I will detail a handful of live chances on performance and value bets.

Question for those who love their apps. Do you know which is the top betting application

The betting suggests this is a wide-open heat especially with the withdrawal of Legendary Lunch who would have started one of the major fancies after winning the Woodcote Stakes (Listed) and far from disgraced in the Norfolk Stakes (Group 2) at Royal Ascot. 

Miss Infinity [pictured] is one of two horses to represent Mark Johnston. This Irish-bred bay filly is a daughter of Rock Of Gibraltar, purchased by the trainer for £80,000 at the yearling sales. She has raced five times for Mark Johnston Racing Ltd and proven a very talented filly. Three wins display a gusty attitude, most poignantly a recent neck victory at Listed class when travelled to Vichy, France. An official rating of 94 puts her high on the pecking order here and from a string of Group entries I can assess she is one of the top juveniles in Kingsley Park. Connections will be expecting a bold show. 

David Barron knows his horses and Danielsflyer is a horse going places. This son of Dandy Man ran on with purpose when closing fast at the line in the Woodcote Stakes (Listed) to be denied by Legendary Lunch. That form reads well. Interesting to reason why this bay colt hasn't been seen since early June but he has probably suffered from a niggle or two and then connections decided to wait for this big money race.    

Another battling type is Ann Duffield's Rainbow Mist who on official figures is top rated. This bay colt was raised 11lb for his last win at York over the minimum trip. This Irish-bred likes to be held up off the pace and then challenge late which could prove to be a valuable asset as this will be run at a furious pace. Additionally, stepping up to 6f should mean she isn't detached, which even when your plan is to run on, can be a void to fill over the minimum trip especially a large field. This son of Lilborne Lad is a hardy sort who will be rattling towards the line. Definitely one for the short list. 

Mark Jonhston's Rusumaat has plenty of pace and could well have many of these struggling to keep tabs. This son of Arcano runs in the silks of Hamdan Al Maktoum and a bargain buy at £45,000. He displayed sparkling speed at Redcar over 6f when going clear by seven lengths. This March foal was disappointing when unplaced in the Coventry Stakes (Group 2) at Royal Ascot. Paul Hanagan him at Goodwood in a competitive nursery only second by a neck to Final Reckoning. 

Conclusion: Never an easy race to assess. A difficult call but I would give Miss Infinity a fair crack of the whip. Definitely not a betting race for me. I would rather pick a couple of lesser lights and lay them to be unplaced. A supreme win for connections and with prize money down to the sixth place means jockeys won't be lacking enthusiasm today. 

Professional Gamblers: Barney Curley

Who is Barney Curley? Why is he so feared by bookmakers and one of the most is celebrated and respected punters in their field? The reason Barney Curley has been the annoyance of bookmakers and one of the most renowned punters of modern times can be traced back to a night at a Belfast race track over forty years ago.

Barney's father, a grocer by trade, decided to take a gamble. He bet and bet big on one of his own dogs. During the race, the dog fell and broke his neck at the first bend. The sight of his dad walking back up the track, cradling the dead dog, has haunted Barney ever since. The consequences were devastating, yet would be the backbone of the driving force in Curley becoming in a league of his own where punters are concerned.

Free Horse Racing Tips, Click Here!Curley's father, Curley senior, took Barney, the oldest of six siblings, out of school and sentenced him to 15 months of working double shifts at the plastics factory in Manchester. The two Curley's stayed in Manchester working until enough was saved to pay off all his debts from the gamble.

Curley's father taught him what honour and pride was the best way he knew how. "My father wouldn't come back to Ireland until everyone was paid" Barney recalled. This fact was a good lesson even though it really left him scarred. Each and every winning bet he makes is a bit more retribution for the ways that the bookies made him feel that night and suffer for the next 15 months. Barney has secured betting accounts with bookies all over the world. His most wicked pleasure came in the late 1980's. William Hill decided that he no longer wanted to conduct business with Curley. Over the previous two years Barney had taken them for £200,000.

Barney did not get his start in the business world as a punter. At the tender age of 24 he began by managing bands. Eventually, he added to his plate the ownership of a few pubs and betting shops. Later he decided it was not enough and packed up, closing shop, and moved south of the border to start his punting career into overdrive.

"I wanted to prove myself, " he says. "You have to be out of the ordinary to make money." "I fancied myself as a race reader and I thought I could crack the system. My first big win was about £80,000 and within 6 weeks it had all vanished. I was drinking. I soon discovered that drinking and gambling don't go together!"

The largest venture Curley orchestrated in Ireland was the ever famous 'Yellow Sam' coup. In this one endeavour he netted almost £300,000. The race was a race that took place at the Mount Hanover Amateur Riders Handicap Hurdle at Bellewstown on the 25th of June 1975. Bellewstown, a small country Track, just north of Dublin, at the time had just one phone line. Curley and his team got work backing the horse off-course in stakes up to £50, while the others involved made sure the phone was occupied. This was pre-modern technology days so it was impossible for the bookmakers to notify their representatives at the track that a coup was underway. Yellow Sam, who had shown little to no form in his nine previous runs, started the complete outsider at 20/1. At the end of the race, Yellow Sam won with a full 2 ½ lengths ahead of the rest

Like all the other professional punters, Barney Curley made a very comfortable living from racing. His house is a seven bedroom mansion near Newmarket, complete with an indoor swimming pool there's a Mercedes in the driveway. Its number plate simply puts it "I BET".

When asked what advice he would give to the average punter, his answer was not entirely positive. "It's very difficult to make racing pay in the bookmakers' shops with their computerised tracking systems and expert analysts. Always go to the course if you can. You will invariably get better prices by shopping around. The important thing is to control your emotions and don't chase your losses. There's always another day. I know my judgement of form is sound enough to pay off in the end." This statement helps separate Curley from a number of his peers. He knows that no matter how seasoned, there is no such thing as a sure bet and knows everyone can lose.

In conclusion, it is clear Curley is a man of skill. He was brought up to know the value of hard work and the importance of the value of ones word. Curley took a hard life and made it successful.

Alex Bird
Dave Nevison
Paul Cooper
Phil Bull
Many More

5:05 Yarmouth Racing Tips (11th Aug) TOTEPLACEPOT SIX PLACES IN SIX RACES EBF MAIDEN STAKES (Plus 10 Race) (CLASS 4) (2yo)

An EBF Maiden stakes (Plus 10) over 7f 3y on good to firm going. 

Not bad prize money for this contest. A few of these come with big reputations. Charlie Appleby has a number of talented two-year-olds in this year's string and Salsabeel is high in the pecking order if my information is correct. This bay colt is a son of Exceed And Excel and homebred for Darley racing in the royal blue silks. As with all juveniles making their debut, it can be a difficult test. However, this February foal is held in high regard and expected to go well.

Jeremy Noseda has been quiet with his two-year-olds this season but he is a class trainer and capable of sending out a debut winner although they often fare better second start. Intrepidly is an American-bred son of Medaglia d' Oro racing in the familiar silks of The Honourable Earl Mack & T Hind Racing. This $200,000 yearling comes from a good family with expensive siblings. This is the only horse Noseda has sent to the course and only ride for Jamie Spencer. Those factors alone give the impression they mean business and add to the interest of this maiden. 

Novoman represents William Haggas. This chestnut son of Sir Prancealot was relatively fancied on debut at Epsom when placed third. A slow start didn't help but it is worth noting that was at auction class which means this is in race type a step up in class. This 90,000G yearling purchase will need to do better today but has valuable race experience. 

James Tate is a superb trainer and he can go very well with juveniles making their racecourse bow. In addition, I consider this Newmarket trainer sends his better horses to race at this venue. Law And Order is a bay colt sired by Lawman racing in the familiar silks of Saeed Manana. At 40,000G this juvenile is a relatively cheap purchase. 

Conclusion: An intriguing race. Law And Order may have claims but I would be looking at just two colts here: Salsabeel & Intrepidly. The former, trained by Charlie Appleby, is held in high regard and for me the horse to beat. Whether 2/1 or so is value is another thing. Time may tell it is a fantastic price. Intrepidly is an expensive purchase and it catches the eye that it is the only horse sent to the course by Noseda and solitary ride for Spencer. I very much doubt they will be coming here just for the seaside air. It could well be a match between the two talking horses. I would favour Salsabeel.  

Horse racing is a game of research

There are many sporting events out there that rake in millions and millions in gambling revenue every year. Football, in particular, stands out amongst the crowd with it being so big in the UK and across Europe.

But while football becomes increasingly unpredictable, throwing off seasoned ‘experts’ left right and centre- who saw Leicester winning the BPL and Portugal winning Euro 2016? Horse racing allows for a more measured and informed bet. After all, you don’t know what is going on in Football player’s heads, what has happened at home or at work with the team, a horse, should be easier to read.

Thus, Horse racing isn’t such a game of chance like other sports betting and your run of the mill standard gambling. It’s not like a game of roulette, for example, where winning consecutive rounds reduces your probability of success, it’s a game of skill, research and rhythm.

To win big in horse racing you have to do the research. There is so much to take into consideration when it comes to betting on the gee-gees. The racers past form, the jockeys, the strengths and weaknesses of the horse and the condition of the course all factor in to the potential success of your bet.

One great way of getting to grips with all the ins and outs of the races and the events in question is to physically attend and get speaking with experts and other horse racing aficionados. It’s this social element that can also help you better learn potential tips and rumours about certain racers and riders which could greatly affect the outcome of a race.

It’s important in any aspect of gaming to keep your head especially when nothing appears to be going right for you. Don’t bet angry and make sure that the bets you are placing are made when you are in control and thinking straight. Nothing upsets a professional gambler more than suffering certain patchy spells and even losing streaks, it can knock their confidence and wind up letting them make thoughtless bets and losing more than they originally intended.

Horse racing is the ideal way in which to better understand various elements that can affect the outcome of a bet that you place. The races themselves are fast, frantic and fun and it’s very easy to get lost in the excitement of race day. But the skills that you can attain from betting on horse races can seriously help develop your skills and intuition to become a better gambler.

10 Dark Horses - August

10 Dark Horses

Just having a look at the trainer info I have received and we have a few debutantes worthy of your interest. A few horse are making their second start and look decent types.

Salsaabeel - Charlie Appleby

This bay colt is a son of Exceed And Excel. I can guarantee this two-year-old has ability.

Wadood - Robert Cowell

This stable has a few decent juveniles and this son of Kodiac has been on our radar for some time. He had no luck on debut and is worth noting the second start if in a maiden.

Mach One - Clive Cox

This son of Makfi has a reputation and ability.

Devil's Guard - Keith Dalgleish

Dalgleish has done well with his juveniles this season and with a bigger string, he has a few better class horses. I can pretty much guarantee this son of Dark Angel will be winning. Definitely, a horse to watch out for and should be making his debut very soon.

Diagnostic - William Haggas

A class trainer with plenty of class horses. This grey daughter of Dutch Art is owned and bred by Cheveley Park Stud. A debutante worthy of note.

Magicinthemaking - Jeremy Noseda

This American-bred filly is a breeze-up purchase who cost $165,000. Noseda doesn't detail many of his talented two-year-olds but this debutante will go well.

Dubai Thunder - Saeed bin Suroor

This son of Dubawi is well regarded and should be making his debut soon.

Connacht Girl - Karl Burke

Worth noting second start. If racing at maiden class should go very well and expected to progress with racing.

Mere Brow - Ann Duffield

This filly ran well on debut over 5f. She will be stepped up to 7f next start and recently withdrawn when becoming unsettled in the stalls. I expect this juvenile to be winning soon.

Calibration - Martyn Mead

Entered to run at Yarmouth this Thursday. Looks a horse going places.

All the above mentioned are talented horses. Please appreciate this information takes a lot of time and effort to identify these winning horses.

Thanks for your support.


6:40 Kempton Racing Tips (3rd Aug) BRITISH STALLION STUDS EBF MAIDEN FILLIES´ STAKES (Plus 10 Race) (CLASS 5) (2yo)

Jeff Smith - Horse Racing Owner
An EBF Maiden Fillies Stakes race over 7f on a standard to slow going. 

Seven two-year-olds take part. Snow Squaw has been fancied on both starts to date and far from disgraced when making her debut at Newmarket and then stepping up to seven furlongs when third in a competitive race at Ascot. This Irish-bred daughter of Excelebration is out of a three-time winning mare at Listed class and placed in Group 2. David Elsworth does well with his juveniles and I imagine connections were satisfied with her performance the last start although hoping for a win. This homebred must take the beating today.

Robert Eddery is a talented trainer who deserves more horses sent his way. Fire Palace is a daughter of Royal Applause and a bargain by when purchased by her present owner Edwin Phillips for just 1,800G. Interesting that connections sent this bay filly to Goodwood on debut and she showed promise to finish seventh at odds of 66/1. Eddery does very well with his juveniles when prominent in the betting on their second start and there has been money for this horse. I'd expected a bold show.

Every Nice Girl is trained by Marco Botti who has been a little quiet with his two-year-olds this season. This American-bred daughter of Mizzen Mast is a breeze-up purchase [bought at two, April] for 58,000G. Botti has fair win and place claims with his debutantes priced 10/1 & less. 

David Simcock has been in cracking form with his two-year-olds this season and Vista Steppe made her debut at Doncaster, although not particularly fancied. The betting is key here. If priced 13/2 & less SP has claims but if weak in the market best watched.

The others are best watched. 

Conclusion: This looks a fine chance for Snow Squaw to win. A couple of runs should have her primed and the main opponent looks to be Fire Palace. I expect Eddery's second starter to improve but needs to. It is a shame there aren't three places for each-way backers but, in fairness, his fancied juveniles either win or finish unplaced. Every Nice Girl & Vista Steppe may have claims if in their respective betting guides although I would be looking towards the top two in the betting. Snow Squaw gets the nod.

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2:15 Catterick Racing Tips (2nd August) BRITISH STALLION STUDS EBF NOVICE STAKES (CLASS 5) (2yo)

An EBF Novice Stakes over 7f on good to firm going. 

The betting suggests this is a three-horse race although stakes race can always be prone to a freaky big price at times. 

However, this looks out of the trio and interesting juveniles they are too.  Glitter Girl is a bay daughter of Invincible Spirit. This Irish-bred filly was relatively fancied on debut and showed a good deal of ability to be beaten into fifth by less than four lengths. This Cheveley Park-owned two-year-old was made 5/4f when stepping up a furlong at Thirsk and didn't have too many worries holding the late challenge of outsider Iconic Belle. In truth that wasn't the most competitive of heats but she was very well backed and ran on strongly to the line for a tidy success. Haggas' charge has to shoulder a penalty which may make life harder. I wouldn't be tempted to bet at 4/6f. 

Richard Fahey can train a juvenile to win on its first start and Golconda Prince must have been showing up well on the gallops to be heading straight to a novice stakes. The plus side with such a move is that if you hold strong claims the winning opposition often carry a penalty which can, in theory, make such a race type a logical route. This Irish-bred son of Arcano cost 85,000G at the yearling sales. This half-brother to Ribchester will need to be pretty smart to bustle up a winner but Fahey has an excellent strike rate with his debutantes and if strong in the market would be a confident sign. 

Mere Brow is interesting. I had my eye on this daughter of Clodovil when she made her debut over 5f at Beverley. Ann Duffield rates this juvenile owned by David Armstrong and I expected this horse to be backed from big odds. Well, I got that completely wrong as a major drift in the market had me feeling apprehensive. Noting that this February foal is stepping up from the minimum trip to 7f clearly details why connections didn't really care what happened on that start because the trip was insufficient. However, Mere Brow ran a cracking race and I was left feeling frustrated that she missed out on a place at huge odds. Considering this youngster was purchased at the yearling sales for £3,000 this bargain buy was inspired. If showing ability over 5f this step up by two furlongs catches the eye. It's a shame this wasn't three places for each-way backers but I wouldn't be at all surprised to see Mere Brow win. 

Pro Gambler Favourite Bets

There is one thing all pro gamblers have in common: they want to win money from bookmakers. However, from there many have conflicting ideas of what makes a good bet. See what these three yesteryear to modern-day professional gamblers had to say on this fascinating subject. What bet made them tick? Learn the secrets from the likes of Jack Ramsden, Alex Bird & Harry Findlay.    

Jack Ramsden quit his job as a stockbroker in 1980 and made a name for himself as professional punter. His successful punting like so many other professionals was based around speed figures and race times.

Ramsden's advice on each way bets is to ditch them. He states: I analysed my betting a couple of years ago and found that if I had doubled my win stakes instead of having each way bets, I would have been much better off. I think all punters would benefit by cutting out all each-way bets and sticking to singles.

He was unusual in that he used his own bookmaker, Colin Webster. There relationship was indeed unique, Colin paid Ramsden £5,000 a year for his advice and also had the job of getting his bets on with other bookmakers. Another unusual trait of Jack Ramsden wass his liking for the multiple bet. His reasoning was that they are an extension of his policy to go for large prices and he reckoned that on 4 occasions he won over £200,000 on multiple bets.

Alex Bird was the original professional gambler who made a fortune after the war at Britain's racecourses. He learned his trade working for his father who was a bookmaker but soon decided that it would be more profitable to be on the other side. He had many different ways of beating the bookmaker, but probably his most famous was his success on betting on the result of photo finishes. Unlike today photo finishes would take about 5 minutes to develop so there was always an active betting market on the outcome. Bird very early on noticed that when horses crossed the line together an optical illusion meant that the horse on the far side invariably looked like he had won. He also discovered a simple technique which meant the illusion didn't occur. He stood at an elevated vantage point as near to the winning post as possible, he would keep very still, close his left eye and create an imaginary line across the track at the finishing line. He used this simple system for the next 20 years to make himself a fortune. With a reported 500 consecutive successful bets.

Another favoured method he used to make money was to use his influence in the ring to create a false favourite. He often placed huge bets often as much as £50K at a time however he couldn't get these sort of bets laid in the betting ring so he would employ an army of helpers around the country placing bets in off-course bookmakers. If Bird fancied a horse but felt the odds were to short he would place a bet of up to £10K on another horse in the race. He would then ensure that it was "leaked" that he had placed the bet. Prices would then dramatically alter as the "mug" money poured onto his horse. This meant that the price of the horse that he wanted to back heavily and clandestinely off the course would drift out in the market. His army of helpers would then back the horse off course all over the country.

These are Alex Birds Golden Betting Rules:

1. Never bet when there is a change in the going. There is nothing to upset form quite as much as a change in the going.

2. Be aware of the overrounds being offered by bookmakers and don't bet when they are unfair. At some smaller meetings bookmakers will sometimes create a book 40% or 50% in their favour.

3. Be an Each-Way thief. Do this by finding races with 8-10 runners which are not handicaps, and where there are only a few form horses in the race. Then oppose the favourite and combine the second and third favourites in each-way combination bets.

4. Look for up and coming apprentices. A good apprentice with a 7lb claim can be worth his weight in gold!

5. Never bet on the first show, you will find that the majority of runners increase in price. Taking second show prices will increase your winnings by 10% over a season.

6. Never bet in handicaps.

7. Never bet in 3year old maidens, particularly those only for fillies.

Harry Findlay, a flamboyant and highly successful gambler, gives the impression that he can hardly believe his luck in owning a horse as good as Denman, arguably one of the most talented novice chaser in its time. He said: "Denman had got that sort of thing about him, people either want to take him on or they like him, and that's the sort of person I am. There was no middle, grey area with Denman, there's no grey area with me. That's my type of character."

On gambling

"If you look up gambling in the dictionary, it doesn't say 'this means a sure way to make a steady profit over a period of time', it says 'gambling: a form of interest that can either ruin you or make you a fortune', and that's the way it is."

On Horse Race Betting he said: "There's no difference between getting 1-2 about a 1-4 chance and getting 4-1 about a 2-1 chance. People who say 'I won't bet odds-on', they're just idiots. When you want to bet an odds-on shot, you can get on - when you want to bet a big-priced one, you can't."

On why you shouldn't hedge

"When you pick a 20-1 shot to win the Grand National, don't have £200 at 20's and then go and lay £600 at 5-2 and, when it wins, get £2,500. If you believe that 20-1 shot, have £200 at 20's and then go and have another £300 at 14's and then £400 at 10's and then, when it goes off 5-2 or 11-4, don't hedge if you still fancy it."

Welcome Bonus or Free Play?

A number of factors can influence our decision to sign up with a new online casino. A wide choice of slot games, the ability to play different versions of roulette and the presence of live dealers: These are all important aspects to take into account but for most of us, it’s the size of the welcome bonus that really drags us in.

Big Money

I’ve you’ve ever compared casinos online then you’ll know that some of the cash bonuses for new customers can run into thousands of pounds – or currency equivalent. There will naturally be terms and conditions to look out for, however, but figures of that kind certainly can’t be ignored.

Alongside the cash deals are more humble, free play offers that allow you to effectively, ‘Try Before you Buy,’ but which is best?

What to watch for

With all welcome promos there will be some form of rollover requirement but what, exactly, does that mean? A rollover will specify the amount of times you have to wager the bonus before you can take any profits and transfer them onto your card, or into your bank or eWallet.

So, for example, if you have a £100.00 bonus and the rollover specifications are 30x, you have to stake £3,000 before any returns come in. You may also have a limited time in which to do this – possibly 30 days – so as you can see, it is vital that you check all the terms and conditions when comparing one casino against another.

These may seem like restrictive rules but serious casino players will have no issue with wagering that kind of money. However, you must adhere to responsible gambling guidelines and be comfortable with them yourself.


Online casinos will often offer some form of free play deal that runs alongside their cash bonus although on occasions this may be listed separately. Free play sounds like a great offer and it’s certainly a good way to get to know a casino – there’s that ‘Try Before you Buy’ concept coming in again.

Points to look out for here include the likely fact that the rollover terms are much higher and your winnings may well be capped at something like £25.00. Free Play will also, most likely, apply to slot games only and in many cases they are restricted to one certain favourite such as Starburst.

However, as mentioned, this is an excellent way for anyone to get acquainted with the way that a casino works – its graphics, navigating around the site and so on – so even if you can’t secure a profit at the end of those free spins, you certainly haven’t lost anything.
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Prince Of Lir in Form to Win Papin

Prince of Lir trained by Robert Cowell
Maisons-Laffitte: Prix Robert Papin (Group 2) 5f, 2yo colts and fillies

Norfolk Stakes winner Prince Of Lir, trained by Robert Cowell for owners The Cool Silk Partnership, faces five rivals including fellow Brit raider Tis Marvellous.  

Prince Of Lir follows the same path as Reckless Abandon who achieved the double in 2012 and trained by Clive Cox, who fields Tis Marvellous.

Robert Cowell said:  "He's been in excellent form at home since his win at Royal Ascot and it makes sense to run him with no penalty in this rather than carry extra weight at Goodwood. It will be faster ground than he encountered at Ascot, but it was nice ground when he won on his debut at Beverley and they usually put plenty of water on."

Tis Marvellous i stepping up in class after finishing second on debut then an easy winner at 4/9f at Windsor. 

Cox said: Clive Cox said: "It's a big step up in class but he was very impressive at Windsor and that was no surprise as he'd pleased us at home beforehand. He should make his presence felt." 

French representatives include Al Johrah who thrashed by US wonder filly Lady Aurelia in the Queen Mary Stakes at Royal Ascot, although unbeaten in two races prior this defeat. 

Unbeaten German filly Hargeisa brings further interest which bar the British pair are fillies.    

See race details here: Racing Post