Tuesday 18 April 2017

It's A Gambler's Life For Me - By Neil Walsh

What was your first experience of gambling? 

I used to go into the local bookies with my mates when we were aged 16-17. We would sit in there all day, smoking cigars, reading newspaper form. We had no idea what we were looking at. We just put stupid multi bets together all day. I then graduated onto putting my Grandad's bets on every Saturday when he got too sick to get to the bookies. He would do a 10 pence each way patent every Saturday.

What was your biggest gambling success?

In 2010, I won £3200 on a £10 football sixfold bet Sky Super 6. Three draws, two away wins and one home result. I used to do this bet religiously as part of the Super 6 competition they run every week. One day I got up early to go to Anfield to watch Liverpool v Portsmouth, as I was leaving I remembered I hadn’t put my bet on, so I booted up the computer, went to the site and just looked at the fixtures and clicked the first result that popped into my head, without the usual hours of research. When the full-time results were read out over the tannoy at the match, I wasn’t sure I had won and I had a five-hour drive home, uncertain as to whether or not I had won.

What was you biggest gambling mistake?

I maxed out a credit card and dumped over a grand on top of the league Chelsea beating bottom of the league Wigan away at evens. A week earlier they had smashed Arsenal three or four nil. Wigan equalised in last ten minutes of the match from two nil down. I felt sick. I nearly got divorced over it.

What would you improve in horse racing? 

Sectional times on the flat. The all-weather would be ideal from a punting point of view.

Who do you admire in racing and why?

With the latest headlines of 4000 career winners, it has to be AP McCoy. The number of horses he gets to win that really shouldn’t is unreal. He is totally dedicated to winning. Riding hurt, but he puts in a shift every time and as a punter, I appreciate I will get a run for my money.

Name your favourite racehorse of all time?

Seagram, as this was my first winning selection in the Grand National.

What's your personal gambling ambition?

Would love to give up the day job and be a professional horse tipster/gambler.

Who would you like to be for a day (sport)?

I always fancied being the guy in the pit crew who held the pole out with the sign for the driver to stop. I reckoned he had the easiest, safest, job in the pits and probably got well compensated for it.

Best advice was given?

I’m not sure. I don’t take advice too well.  I’m sure I’ve been given loads of good advice I just don’t seem to have the ability to remember it or take it on board. 

Dream holiday destination?

I would like to go to America and drive along the coast either in a camper van or motorcycle. I would like to eat a hotdog at a baseball game and visit the grand canyon along the way. Someone told me sitting by the grand canyon “puts life into perspective” and it has stuck with me.

If you had a dinner party, who would you invite and why?

Jamie Oliver to do the cooking. The Dalai Lama and George Harrison for some existential conversation around the table and some Beatles anecdotes. Tom Segall, so I can get on at the price before he announces his selections and Jim Morrison for the after party “entertainment” in a bag.

Want to tell your gambling story? Email: jason_coote2000@yahoo.co.uk