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Saturday, 16 October 2021

Ex-Gambler Turns Software Ace

Like all successful businessmen, Yuchun Lee is passionate about his experience of making money. The 42-year-old Taiwanese-American gushes about "big players", "advanced techniques" and "ace tracking".

None of these exotic terms relate to Unica, the software house based in Waltham, Massachusetts, that he founded in 1992.

Mr Lee is reminiscing about gambling tactics and his time with the Amphibians, a gang of top-grade students and graduates from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

The Amphibians took on casinos and other gambling dens using a disciplined mathematical model of card-counting to lower the odds in their favour.

Today, their exploits form the backdrop for 21, the Hollywood movie starring Kevin Spacey and based on the book Bringing Down The House by Ben Mezrich.

The card-counting technique works only in blackjack, where the player bets against the casino, hoping to be dealt cards that add up to 21.

Covert activity

Mathematically-savvy MIT students, working to strict-allocated rules and acting in rehearsed roles, racked up impressive earnings during Mr Lee's era. Hand signals indicated to the team's designated high-roller when to bet heavily on a table.

These tactics were not illegal, but casinos made every effort to blacklist the team members. The thrill of outwitting casino security appealed to Mr Lee.

"It was like being a spy," he recalls.

The future technology industry executive got an early taste of hard cash when travelling with up to $250,000 of winnings strapped to his body. Mr Lee's card-counting streak ran from 1995 to 2000, before post-9/11 metal detectors could pick up the metal strip in a $100 bill.

The David v Goliath feeling is the same, plus the gusto, the team spirit we felt when we beat the casinos

Yuchun Lee on his software firm

"There were maybe three times a year we got caught with cash at an airport, but we were very organised, we had a lawyer ready to take our call," he says.

He was caught once, and relied on the pre-arranged lawyer to convince the authorities he was not transporting drug-dealing profits.

The sums of money involved were astonishing, even by the standards of the computer industry, where Mr Lee's company employs 500 staff with annual revenues of $100m.

At the opening weekend of a casino in Connecticut, Mr Lee and his team made a killing. Driving back to MIT in Boston, they gathered in a meeting room to pile up gambling chips worth $500,000, all made in just 48 hours.

Mr Lee fizzes with tales of his blackjack adventures. In fact, he is perfectly equipped to play his allocated role among spotters and card-counters wearing disguises to deflect observant casino security staff. Mr Lee played the Crazy Asian Gambler, whose job title within the Amphibians was the Big Player.

The Crazy Asian Gambler was an act that Mr Lee embraced with gusto, convincing the casino staff that here was a man who would abandon all logic in his pursuit of a winning hand.

Rogues' gallery

Team members who were identified were photographed and barred from the casino, which would then share their faces via its security firm with other operators. Mr Lee's five-year streak ended when he was barred from the giant Bellagio casino in Las Vegas.

By this time, he was already running Unica and came home to open his e-mail, where a purchase order for marketing software was awaiting him. The customer was the Bellagio casino.

Unica now has offices in eight countries

How does it compare with running a marketing software company? "There are some parallels. The David v Goliath feeling is the same, plus the gusto, the team spirit we felt when we beat the casinos."

Four of Unica's staff are ex-counters who have been blacklisted by the casinos. What kind of mind does it take to follow all of this fast card action?

Mr Lee produces a laminated card from his wallet. There are tiny numbers covering the credit-card sized item. These represent 10,000 hours of simulated blackjack rules. He maintains that by memorising this card it is possible to lower the odds in a player's favour.

"Anyone can do it."

Mr Lee still carries the card about with him, a tangible reminder of a time when, as a Big Player cherished by casinos, he was showered with extraordinary incentives to keep on gambling. "You would never have experiences such as these anywhere else. I was given a helicopter ride through the Grand Canyon at sunset."

Changing roles

In the film 21, Laurence Fishburne plays a casino security chief fighting for his job, as face-recognition software threatens to render his generation of tough investigators extinct.

Now Mr Lee revels in the potential of sophisticated software. The program he sells helps his clients spot a potential future customer. But just as his card-counting alter ego, the Crazy Asian Gambler, relied on cold mathematical odds, this product works on precision.

He encourages his clients to use data generated by the program with care. "We don't want to spook people by appearing to know too much about them."

And like Laurence Fishburne's security man, Cole, Mr Lee has seen the world change.

Airport security is a serious impediment to shifting the sums needed to raise the stakes on a table and the winnings that can result from diligent team work. And the quicker the money is carried away from one city, the sooner it can be used to bet against a casino in another location.

If hundreds of thousands of dollars cannot be moved through airport scanners, then surely a rota of drivers could be organised to carry the cash to selected points? Mr Lee nods in agreement at this suggestion. He still seems like a man who is very familiar with the milieu of the Big Players.

Friday, 24 September 2021

Tips To Make The Most Out Of Your Online Casino Gaming Routine

Online casino gaming has to be one of the most cherished things in 2020. It is only fair. Take a look around yourself. What do you see except for destruction and fear? 

Everyone is desperately trying to get out of the heap of problems that have been dumped upon us this year. However, things are taking a seemingly long time to get better. 

This little intro should be enough to give you an overview of what this year has been like so far. In times like these, people are finding things to get indulged into to take this mind off of adversities that we are all facing. 

Online casino gaming emerges as a true hero and helps people have some fun and forget about their issues for some time. So, we have to give it the credit it deserves. 

If you haven't yet dipped into the ocean of online casino gaming, we highly recommend you check out CasinAsia. If you are into it already, here are some tips that will help you make the most out of your online casino gaming routine. 

Set aside some time 

The first thing that you put into your online casino gaming routine is your time. Your attention and your money come later on. Those things are valuable, but your time is more critical. So, you must set aside some time to play online casino games. It can be as little as half an hour and as long as four hours. Take as long as you want but make sure that you don't spend all day in front of your mobile or computer screen. It is not suitable for your mind or your body.

Decide the games you want to be playing

A lot of people struggle while deciding the game that they want to play in the online casino. As a result, they waste a lot of time on different games, and they fail to find one that they like. They even lose their money too because they are tempted to bet on games that they don't have much knowledge of. If you don't want that to happen to you, then decide the games that you want to be playing beforehand. You can look up the rules and rewards of each game on the internet. That might help you decide better. 

Pay attention to the instructions 

One of the worst things that can happen to you during your online casino gaming routine is you failing to understand the instructions and losing your money in a game. It hurts more than we can tell. So, before you hit the play button, make sure you have paid enough attention to the instructions of the game. Don't miss on even the smallest bot of information. You might have to pay for it, later on, quite literally. 

Play in the demo mode first 

Imagine reading all the instructions of the game very well and jumping into the game but failing miserably. It sounds quite embarrassing. While failures are nothing to be ashamed of, but in online casinos where you have willingly put your money on stake, failing can take a toll on your bank balance. You just can't afford to lose in an online casino. So you must play in the demo mode first. It will give you a little practice, so when you play with real players, you have the confidence and knowledge to win. 

Don't bet out of budget 

Let's see things for what they are. Online casinos are nothing short of gambling houses. Online casinos are legal in most places because they are a bit more transparent and safe than traditional gambling, but there are still a lot of risks involved. It is all calculated risk, of course. This is because you have direct control over the amount of risk you are taking. Yes, we are talking about betting. Now, if you want to have direct control over this risk, don't bet out of budget. This will save you from becoming a gambling addict and going bankrupt. 

Never play while you are intoxicated

In taking alcohol and drugs while playing at the casino can be something that looks good at the cinema, but in real life, it can devastate you. It is known to everyone that alcohol and drugs stop your mind from thinking ideally. So, why would you want to do that when you are playing with your own money? It can rob you of all your wealth and bring you on the road. Never play while you are intoxicated if you want to have a good time in your online casino gaming routine.  

Keep some snacks and beverages handy 

Good food and fun gaming routines are a match made in heaven. However, you don't want to take a trip to the kitchen several times when you are busy having fun with your online casino games. So, keep some snacks and beverages handy. This will keep your stomach and your heart both very happy. 

Use a bigger screen 

The increasing popularity of smartphones is undeniable. Every other person has a smartphone these days. From making international bank payments to playing online casino games, one can do almost everything on that little screen. However, you don't have to do something a certain way just because you can. What we mean to say is, the joy of gaming is doubled when you use a bigger screen. Simply connect your smart tv to a controller and enjoy your online casino gaming routine. 

 Avoid the gambler's fallacy 

When you win a game, and you are tempted to play another one thinking that the stars are in your favor and that you will win again, it is called gambler's fallacy. It lacks logic and base. It is just an illusion that can turn dangerous. So no matter what you do, avoid the gambler's fallacy. It is not at all good for your bank balance.

Photo: Pixabay free for commercial use and no attribution 

Monday, 20 September 2021

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.

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. 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 livelihood 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 extraordinary 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.

Photo: Pixabay free for commercial use and no attribution but given 

Tuesday, 7 September 2021

Online Casino Vs Brick-And-Mortar

Choices choices.

If you go back twenty or thirty years, the only way you would be able to play roulette, blackjack, three-card poker, craps or slots would be going down the road, more likely city, and knocking on the door of the local establishment. 

I'm talking about brick-and-mortar casinos. Even our little town of March in Cambridgeshire had a casino back in the day. 

From the stories I had been told by my Dad and Uncle Keith, they had a great time losing all their money. My uncle said he would get paid on a Friday and lose his shirt over the weekend before putting in a good week of hard graft to return again and again and again...

I'm sure some of the regulars must have breathed a sigh of relief when stiffer gambling controls were brought in and it closed. 

I would have loved to have seen the place still open today. 

However, that doesn't mean we still can't enjoy the glitz and glamour of a traditional casino. The Grosvenor at Great Yarmouth, Norfolk, is a beautiful gem of a place in what could be viewed as a cheap and tacky tourist haunt. I know those words sound a bit harsh, but I love this seaside resort and have many memories of childhood holidays at Caister-on-sea. In fact, it is the reason why we always make our merry pilgrimage every September to the Eastern Festival at Great Yarmouth's racecourse to say a loving hello and sad farewell to all those family and friends who are no longer with us. 

I look to the crowded stands and know, somewhere, you stand tall cheering your winner home. (I miss you, Dad).

There is a lot to be said for going to a brick-and-mortar casino. You can choose from many and varied locations across the country. Many are in listed buildings and even those that do not have a touch of class and opulence about the setting. There is something very James Bond about going to a casino especially taking your better half. I know a lot of times I have been to Yarmouth on a jolly boys outing with my brothers and cousins and had a great time. 

Brick-and-mortar casinos have a real atmosphere of anticipation and a crowd that for the most part is out for a good time. The buzz of people winning a few quid and the look of those who have lost too much and wish they hadn't bothered to go out at all. I would suggest to most to go to a casino if you bet small stakes because the food is cheap, customer service is excellent and you are likely to get plenty of free offers to entice you through the door. The difference is that you know you won't be spending a lot of cash (or losing it) while they are very interested in thinking you might just pay the bill for the staff. It works out nicely when you play the game by not playing the game.  

I've had many an enjoyable night at the casino and look forward to getting back soon.

The advantage of playing online is pretty straight forward. You don't need to go out of your home, travel a distance, or pay for a hotel for the night. You don't get the atmosphere of the casino but sometimes you don't want someone half laying on top of you as they place a bet on the roulette table. When travel, hotel, cost of food and drinks can easily set you back a couple of hundreds you feel you are on a winner by booting up your laptop and getting down to the instant casino play without any hassle or protocol. 

There are endless casinos online and the reason why it pays to check out the best deals, free bets and offers that are available. 

In truth, there is no right or wrong just a matter of how you feel on the night. Sometimes getting all dressed up for a night out in the city and playing in a brick-and-mortar casino until late into the evening is just perfect. While other times you just want to sit in bed, a big bacon butty by your side, a beer and fire up the laptop and play online until you fall to sleep winning or losing but safe and sound at home. 

Be lucky.

Tuesday, 27 July 2021

York Ebor Festival

Every year 300,000 enthusiasts come to witness Yorkshire Ebor Festival. People gather in the pavilion from all over the world to witness this leading and prominent event. Race lovers and fashionistas join the event specifically for the second day of the festival. This day is for the Ladies, and you will observe colorful dresses and hats throughout the pavilion. 

Because of the high demand and popularity of the event, it will be hard to find accommodation during the festival. Since Preakness Stakes fans are still stunned by the results, and we are getting closer to another major event of the season. 

In 1843, the first Ebor Handicap race started this festival at the York Racecourse. Traditionally, the event was for three days, but the organizers extended the event to four days. The major races for the event are the Ebor Handicap, the Yorkshire Oaks, and the Juddmonte International. In this article, you will find the important races for the second day. Also, you can check the Day 3 preview and betting tips here.

Second Day of York Ebor Festival 

1. Lowther Stakes 

This is a middle-distanced race contested at the Newmarket. Two-year-old horses are eligible for this open race. Older horses cannot take part in Lowther Stakes. The organizers named this race in memory of Hugh Lowther, who is the fifth Earl of Lonsdale. This is a six-furlong straight race for nine stone horses. However, Group 1 and Group 2 winners will have a three-pound penalty. After considering the performance of fillies in this race, fans can anticipate the chances for the Cheveley Park Stakes. In 2018, Fairyland won both of the races, making history. 

2. Yorkshire Oaks 

Established in 1849, this famous race falls in Group 1. It is open for mares and fillies of three years old. But, fillies above three years can also participate. Originally, only three aged fillies could participate in this race, but organizers removed these restrictions with time. Since the time of classification in 1971, this race is in Group 1. Older horses started racing in this race in 1991. Horses that perform well in Oaks have better chances to compete well in this race. In 1861, Brown Duchess won both of these races.

3. Galtres Stakes 

This race is one mile and three furlongs. Furthermore, this race is similar to Yorkshire Oaks in restrictions and rules. The major difference is the form of horses. For this race, the participants should either win the Group race or fall under Group 1. Organizers of the York Ebor Festival named this race after Sir Henry Cecil. He was the flat racing champion trainer and died in 2013. None of the horses have ever won this race more than once because of the four-pound penalty for winners. Frankie Dettori is a successful jockey in this racecourse by winning seven matches since 1990. On the other hand, Luca Cumani won eight matches since 1990, ranking him the most successful trainer.

Thursday, 22 July 2021

The history of Bingo: A Personal Experience

Who doesn't love a day at the seaside? 

Ice cream, arcades, stick of rock, pint of whelks and even a game of bingo, if you please.

I can't say I'm a regular bingo player. 

Isn't a dabber a small fish found in the North sea, a stone's throw from the Golden Mile at Great Yarmouth? The amusements are a hive of activity. Walking past the Mint arcade I hear random numbers being called. 

''Legs eleven.''

The time it takes to register a winner I hear the shout:  

''Full House!'' 

Who doesn't love to win at a game of luck? I often say about gambling: ''Sometimes you just need a little bit of luck.''

It made some lucky punters millionaires.

A few of my favourite bingo calls include: 

Man Alive (5)

Doctor's Orders (9)

Duck And Dive (25) 

Dirty Girtie (30) 

Get Up And Run (31) 

To test your bingo calling knowledge, I wonder if you know the following number from these calls?

Queen Bee? 

Top Of The Shop?

Staying Alive?

To be fair, I'm such a beginner that I had no idea the highest number is 90. 

I'm pretty sure I could write a coded message from a random set of bingo numbers. I'd put Alan Turing OBE to shame. Except the code I want to break isn't called Enigma it's winning that cuddly toy with a bundle of tokens I've collected at the Golden Nugget arcade along the seafront in Nelson country. 

I remember playing bingo while on holiday, and although a simple game it's understandable why it's so popular. I can't help think about my late Nana, Ivy, who ''never gambled'', drank bitter lemon, an anti-smoking-prim-and-proper lady who loved a night at the local Hippodrome. 

How I wish I could go back to those times for her as much as me. 

An evening to catch up with her friends, ladies of a certain age, enjoying a bit of fun and, perhaps, going home with a few extra quid in her purse.    

But where did bingo begin? 

With over 100 million online players it's not just your old gran whose got bingo running through her veins. 

Historians have concluded that bingo originated in Italy in the 1500s. Over the centuries the name of the game and the rules have changed to the game played today. 

In the UK, bingo became popular in the 1960 and has continued to this day. It has moved from the high streets to online but whether brick-and-mortar or online chatroom you are sure of some excitement. 

If I said to an avid bingo player: ''Two fat ladies jump and jive at heavens gate.'' 

Instead of being concerned at their exertions, I'm pretty sure you would hear a cheer and a beaming smile which utters the words: ''House!''

You winner, you.   

Photo: Copyright Jason Coote

Thursday, 15 July 2021

Gambling: Money, Sex & Revenge

You may be asking what's that all about?

These three, innocent or not, words are behind just about every murder. Thankfully, I have never been involved with anything like that not being a money-seeking, sexual deviant with an inkling for revenge. 

I say that tongue in cheek. 

Out of the three, I would opt for money, without menaces. 

I really need to change the subject before I dig myself into a hole. 

Six-feet deep?

If money, sex and revenge are the motivation for murder, I wonder what is the motivation(s) for most gamblers?

Money (yes), sex (I don't think so), revenge (I can't quite see how that would work).

Here goes my three motivations:

Money, Passion (not sex) & Achievement. 

Not in any particular order, although money is a big motivation because as the saying goes: ''Money makes the world go round...''

You may have noticed my list of three is lacking in some way. I wonder what would be your list of motivations. The why of behaviour. Let's face it, without motivation we wouldn't be much good at anything. 

It would be like watching a chick-flick when your name is Flathead Joe. 

I wonder if you would have the word ''Buzz'' in your list of motivations. Your fuel for the fire. That neurotransmitter which gets your synaptic nerves firing like an AK47.  

A scoop or two of endorphins, or whatever they may be. For most humans a toxic blend of nicotine, whiskey and Gregg's sausage rolls. 

Betting for the buzz isn't a crime. No one is going to lock you up without parole. But it isn't a motivation that does any gambler much good. It shouldn't be your cardinal motivation. Perhaps it is your cardinal sin. 

Now, no one is saying you won't get a buzz for betting and winning but it shouldn't be your guiding light. 

If you had to detail your three gambling motivations, what would they be. 

Perhaps you will say:

Sex, Drugs and Rock & Roll.

Photo: Pixabay free for commercial use and no attribution

Tuesday, 29 June 2021

Hitting the Proverbial Gambling Wall

When you think about gambling, what comes to mind?

We know the betting part. That's important to our success or failure but there's much more to it than that. 

I always use to think the only person who kept a journal was some old bloke who lived on the moors, wore a hand-knitted jumper, and had a bird book in the side pocket of his anorak. The thought of detailing your stream of consciousness has a touch of the hippie mindset if not new-age thinking, therapy, bordering on mumbo jumbo. 

However, we can learn something from everyone and, hopefully, more importantly, about ourselves. 

We think we know ourselves but do we really? 

It's a strange happening but we see those around us falling in the same hole time after time. 

It's as though their life is following a set pattern, cycle, or route which we can see perfectly well but they are strangely unconscious of their journey which says turn right. They simply never consider turning left or going straight ahead. It's like you love UK Flat turf racing but never consider the melbourne cup offers when you've got a fancy and you really know you are doing yourself down but somehow we fall short.  

We are in many respects a prisoner of our mind. All those things that have brought us to this point in time. We are a product of our nature and nurture and that may be a blessing or a curse. 

The unconscious mind is great at helping us through life - so we don't really need to think. You don't concentrate to get dressed each morning. You don't have to think I need to take a breath of fresh joyous air to keep alive. But think (oh no, you can't) of all those things you do without thinking. 

If everything you think is an exceptionally good idea then you are on to a winner but I can imagine most of us don't. The trouble is that we just don't observe, for the most part, aspects that may haunt our lives. 

Sigmund Freud's psychoanalysis was all about making the unconscious conscious. And one way of doing that is with a journal or diary. 

Hitting the Proverbial Gambling Wall. 

What does that mean?
Well, I am sure you have noticed how you think about gambling hampers you. In truth, we are at the mercy of the human condition and how the brain works. 

So you may find it difficult to change even the most simple of thoughts or actions.

I considered this point the other day about two-year-old horse racing and odds-on. 

I don't know about you, but the idea of betting on an odds-on shot is zero. However, the very fact of seeing an odds-on horse in opposition is like seeing a wall. A skyscraper that touches the clouds. There is no way of looking over the top or around the sides so I don't think what might be beyond those confines or the advantage it may bring. 

For all I know, paradise is literally waiting to be found.

The building doesn't exist - it's all in the mind. 

But the thought of the odds-on horse, let's say, from Archie Watson may put off any thought of betting in the race. You may have a completely different mindset and that is your advantage.  

That reputed star performer concludes many gambler's thoughts.  

This is a problem of the mind. 

You have no interest in betting on the odds-on shot but that very fear of it being unstoppable may knock your thinking on the head. 

So every odds-on horse in opposition makes that race null and void. 

It's a crazy mindset. 


Because it gives no opportunity when there is every chance that the horse may lose.

How many times do you see a two-year-old at prohibitive odds beaten? Lots. In fact, debutantes are even more likely to fall on their sword because they are learning the ropes, the jockey is very unlikely to want to give the horse a hard race and anything can happen. I have researched each and every two-year-old horse trainer. And very few have over a 50% strike race with odds-on shots. 

So they are more than likely poor value even on a good day. 

However, win or lose this has nothing to do with the odds-on shot. It has everything to do with how we perceive it. 

The only way to consider an odds-on horse is to consider it can be beaten. 

Thinking it is akin to a towering wall means you have no options left. That is a disastrous way of thinking. 

The horse may win. It doesn't matter. Why? Because many times it will lose. With the old mindset, you wouldn't have bet on any horse in opposition. You were beaten before the race even started. 

However, thinking there may be a chance of some other horse winning will give you the opportunity to see that come to fruition. 

Don't let your mind be the biggest barrier to your success.

Think, write, and detail those patterns of thought and question them because they often make no sense at all. 

Monday, 21 June 2021

The Highs & Lows Of Terry Ramsden

A story written by Jason Bennetto, originally published in The Independent on Thursday, 7th May 1998, charting the highs and lows of Terry Ramsden. He was the archetypal Thatcherite success story. The son of a postal worker from Romford, Essex, he rose to become one of the country's richest men and most powerful racehorse owners. His millionaire lifestyle, built in the early 1980s on trading in Japanese bonds, included the obligatory executive jet, Rolls-Royces, homes around the world, and the ownership of a football club. His gambling record was the envy of every trackside punter - a regular winner both on the racecourse and at the bookies.

He was a true Eighties self-made man with his cockney vowels and shoulder-length hair. Yet Terry Ramsden, 46, looked anything but a high-flying, city whizz- kid yesterday as he stood in the dock at the Old Bailey. A bankrupt with debts of more than 100m pounds, he was jailed for 21 months for trying to conceal about £300,000 from his creditors.

Ramsden's roller-coaster career began in the City at the age of 16 as an insurance clerk. He quickly realised he could make more money by working for himself and set up his own business, making £25,000 in the first month. 

But the vehicle for Ramsden's career was a company in Edinburgh called Glen International which he bought in 1984, when it had a turnover of £18,000. By 1987, the figure had risen to 3.5billion and Ramsden was said to be the nation's 57th richest man. The venture was based on his knowledge of the specialised and volatile market in Japanese warrants. These were options to buy shares in Japanese companies. He gambled on a rising market and got it right.

After hitting the jackpot, he was quick to adopt a suitably flamboyant and high-flying lifestyle to go with the new-found wealth. Along with his Porsche, Ferraris and Rolls-Royces, he was interested in racehorses - lots of them. At one stage he owned 75.

One of his biggest successes on the racecourse was when his horse Not So Silly won the Ayr Gold Cup in 1987. Small of stature, but invariably accompanied by minder, he was a regular visitor to the winner's enclosure.

"I'm a stockbroker from Enfield. I've got long hair and I like a bet," he once said. He also owned a Georgian mansion on a luxury estate in Blackheath, south- east London, where he could relax in a swimming pool with hologram shark fins beamed on to the water, before flying by helicopter to Walsall Football Club, of which he was both owner and chairman. He lived with his wife, Lisa, and their son, Jake. They also had homes in Scotland, Bermuda and Portugal. 

But in 1986 the market and Ramsden's luck changed. The 1987 crash knocked hundreds of millions of pounds off the value of his securities. He started to run out of cash to keep the huge and complex portfolio of securities afloat and his marriage was on the rocks. Added to this, he was estimated to have lost 58m at the racetrack - there were even stories of him parting with 2m in a single day. Within a year, Glen International crashed, owing 98m, and he moved to the United States.

In September 1991, a warrant for his arrest was issued on fraud charges and he was detained in a jail in Los Angeles until his return to Britain in February 1992. 

The next month, Ramsden was declared bankrupt - with the Inland Revenue demanding 21.5m and other creditors bringing the total debt to near 100m. Ramsden escaped with a two-year suspended sentence in November 1993 after he pleaded guilty to offences of recklessly inducing fresh investment in his empire. 

As a bankrupt, Ramsden was required to disclose all his assets and income but failed to reveal the existence of a hidden trust and concealed his ownership of three million shares in the Silversword Corporation, a Canadian company in which he had a controlling interest. Thousands of pounds was paid from the trust fund to Ramsden's mother, Florence, a former cleaner, which she passed on to her son. He also failed to mention winnings of £77,000 in 1992, from an accumulator bet involving five horses and a dog.

Last year, the Serious Fraud Office announced that Ramsden was to be prosecuted for failing to disclose assets.

At his trial, Ramsden admitted failing to disclose about £300,000. It was also revealed that the fund had also helped pay for a house worth £323,800 for his wife and son.

Jailing Ramsden for 21 months, Judge Peter Beaumont QC also ordered him to pay £10,000 towards prosecution costs. He told Ramsden: "You broke the law and must now be punished." The judge said he would serve at least half the sentence in prison.

Ramsden, of Fulham, south-west London, pleaded guilty to three charges of breaching the Insolvency Act by failing to disclose all his assets. Anthony Arlidge QC, for the defence, said: "He was motivated by a desire to win back his wife and restart his family life. He accepts now that is no longer possible." He added: "He is a man of considerable talent, who for a long time was extremely successful. Rightly or wrongly, he felt his failure was not his fault but due to the misguided views of others."

Tuesday, 4 May 2021

Horses That Probably Win in the Upcoming Preakness Stakes 2021

Preakness Stakes 2021 is one of the most exciting events you don’t want to miss out on. You might be preparing your horse race betting skills as the 146th running of Preakness Stakes will commence sooner on May 15, 2021. If you were still unsure which horse to bet on and were in a hurry to prepare for the event, then you are reading this right. Hence, let’s take a glimpse at horses that will probably win in the upcoming Preakness Stakes 2021.

About Preakness Stakes Horse Racing Preakness Stakes Horse Racing is one of the enormous events in America. It was attended by a vast population of the audience, making it popular across the world. The event usually takes place at Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore, Maryland, on every third Saturday of May, about two weeks after the Kentucky derby. 

Thus, this year, the Preakness Stakes will open on May 15, 2021. It is a Grade I race run over 9.5 furlongs or 1,900 meters long. Hence, it is considered the shortest race among the three triple crown races. Preakness Stakes is, in fact, a festive event. It has InField Fest, where audiences and bettors can bring their drinks and have fun while watching and betting in the horse race. Bookmakers such as Royal Panda Sport can help you bet in this remarkable event with impressive bonuses. 

Get Her Number 

Get her number made its career upon winning in a maiden special weight at Del Mar with 3-1 odds and followed by an ungraded stakes race in Juvenile Del Mar Turf. This time, Get her number finished a close fourth, a mile away from the winner. 

In making his dirt debut, the two-year-old colt knocked over other horses in the race and became the winner of American Pharoah (Grade I) at Santa Anita, where he obtained a place in TVG Breeders’ Cup Juvenile. Also, he made another reputable move when he placed fourth in the Arkansas Derby (Grade I). In the upcoming Preakness Stakes 2021, Get her number has a winning odds of 25-1. 


This three-year-old colt bagged many winnings throughout his career. He made a neck victory in El Camino Real Derby, followed by the 2021 Kentucky Derby Challenge series earning 10 points in the race. Rombauer debuted in Del Mar Turf, where he made a rebound to win at first asking. Then, he placed sixth in the Del Mar Juvenile Turf. 

Moreover, he finished in a runner-up position in the American Pharoah at Santa Anita and won fifth place in Breeders’ Cup Juvenile at Keeneland. Rombauer never ceased to improve his performance with his protean attitude on any surfaces. Thus, Rombauer is expected to have a 20-1 winning odds in the Preakness Stakes 2021.

Medina Spirit 

This dark bay colt took a competitive performance as a two-year-old colt in leading the race in maiden special weight race over five and a half furlongs at Los Alamitos Race Course. It was at that time where he made his debut. In 2021, Medina Spirit took his first race as a three-year-old in the Sham Stakes at Santa Anita Park. He made a late run to close to the third finisher in the race. However, he continued to improve in Robert B. Lewis Stakes and went to an early lead where he became the even-money favorite in a field of six. After that, he raced again in the San Felipe Stakes and was followed by Santa Anita Derby, where he retook second place. His experiences in the race only show that he had enough preparation for this upcoming Preakness Stakes 2021. Thus, Medina Spirit is expected to have the winning odds of 7-2. 

Final Thoughts 

The most exciting event for horse racing enthusiasts is coming near. Thus, expectations about who will win this upcoming Preakness Stakes event are always there. Others may just bet on their favorite horses. However, those who want to win with high probability keep on looking for the best odds. 

Winning your bet in this horse race event would be memorable to you, so keep on digging facts and take a deep look at the winning odds of every horse. Paying attention to the slightest details would even give you a more rewarding experience.

Monday, 3 May 2021

US Racing Bets – Top Tips

With races coming thick and fast this season, punters know they have unlimited chances to place winning bets. At different venues across the US, some of the nation’s top horses compete for honours. Just because you cannot be physically present at the horseracing venues, doesn't mean you cannot partake in the thrill of picking the winning horses. Below we share the daily picks of US races based on stats and current form so that you can place your bets confidently without having to watch how the horses perform at a land-based venue.

Louisiana Downs

At the Louisiana Downs, there will be seven races throughout the day. The first race features a couple of horses that dropped in grade that are also tipped as the favourites. One of these horses is Chick Lips who finished in a respectable eighth position. Going into this race, Chick Lips is the preferred choice, but he faces stiff competition from RootnandToon. The second race is a bit of a rivalry between Fast Dashing Candy and Karoles Patriot. The winner of the race is expected to be between these two, but Fast Dashing Candy has a bit of an advantage as he won his last race at Evangeline in November.

With a string of near misses during the whole of 2017, Pool Party Girl will want to start 2018 on a high by winning this race. It will be a tough task however as she has to finish in front of Reachingforthemoon. Reachningforthemoon herself had an indifferent 2017, but has the added advantage of experience. The other highlight event is race 5 with two favourites, FH Tochin and Hez Our Valentine. FH Tochin won her maiden over the C&D, though Hez Our Valentine drops into the race from an upper-grade race where he managed to compete.

Mahoning Valley

The first race at Mahoning Valley features a horse that was widely expected to dominate the headlines at the start of 2017, El Gordo Navas. However he failed to do so as a result of a number of injuries that limited his experiences. El Gordo Navas will face competition from Battle Crossing and Three Pillars for pole position. In race 4, Don’tbothermenow who struggled at this venue a few weeks back will be seeking a change in fortunes. Odds are in favour of Dontbothermenow more so as his main competitor, Magic Apple, who lost dismally.

In race 6 is an emerging horse causing waves in US racing known as Cindor Bolt. Cindor Bolt’s previous race is a testament to his ability and performance where he went on to win without any effort. Cindor Bolt’s is the clear favourite to win, while Game of Dreams and Enta the Circle are predicted to be close contenders.

Turf Paradise

The first race at Turf Paradise features two horses that dropped a grade, and they are both favourites to finish in the ‘Place’ positions. This will be the third race in a row for Miss N Wildcat in this race group and as such is expected to be more accustomed to the surroundings and the turf. Another fellow dropper is West Princess who will race for the first time in the race group. Miss N Wildcat is probably the best nap of this race based on experience on the turf, but a surprise from a fellow dropper, West Princess cannot be ruled out.

Race 5 is another highlight race to look out for with two favourites having contrasting fortunes. Son of a Royal is simply unbeatable while Trevor’s Call, on the other hand, is not exactly a world-beater but has shown consistency over the past year finishing among the top three places in all of his races. Based on consistency, Trevor’s Call may just be the top pick for this race.