I’ve been meaning to summarise Ascot. It’s always worth doing as you can refer back to it next year for comparison, so here goes: –
Betfair ended up matching, at post time, around £70.5m which was up on last year by about 23%. Last year was down quite a bit so this returns the matched bet turnover to levels that would be deemed ‘normal’.
In the run up to Ascot, I reckoned it would trade around £65m so that’s more or less in line with expectations.
Tuesday and Friday were the biggest days with £15.6 & £16m traded respectively. That was almost inevitable as these were the days that the shortest prices horses were on.
Betdaq was down 3% from previous years and has been declining. That was disappointing as I was hoping for some growth there, but I guess two mergers in quick succession has taken the edge off things. I still managed to get some decent days out of it though.
I generally felt the markets were pretty favourable, though I did struggle on the early markets each day. I think that was more of a case of me chomping at the bit too much. I was far too aggressive.
But as the markets established themselves it got a little easier to understand what was going on. Some of the weaker markets were getting far too much interest and that led to quite a few distortions in the market. Some of the activity appeared to be quite naive, as the same tactic appeared in the feature and the smallest race of the day. That doesn’t make much sense.
The average traded range was very similar to last year and the biggest moves occurred on Tuesday and Wednesday and the smallest Friday. It’s perfectly possible to forecast this and the forecast was a good match this year. This indicated that the markets behaved more or less as expected.
The largest individual race matched £4.2m and the smallest £1.4m.
As I have stated extensively in the run up to Ascot, I wouldn’t miss a day of Ascot for anything. Just like any major meeting, if you trade for a living, these are the opportunities you wait for and you want to pull your all into. You can never be 100% confident of what the actual outcome will be, but you will want to give it your best shot.
While not perfect, I lost on 5 out of 30 races this year, Ascot was exceptional from a trading perspective this year. I almost managed double the profit I achieved at Cheltenham and got things just about right. It was a lovely balance of risk and reward, not too much or too little of either. I was remarkably consistent this year. By just about by every metric you can measure, it was a significant success. I can afford to miss a lot of lower quality stuff next month without significantly impacting my annual results. That gives me a lovely buffer for the rest of the summer. While there are some highlights, July can be quiet, so that buffer will allow me some time to enjoy things if I choose. I’m likely to take this up this year.
At the end of the week, I’m always a bit reflective on things. Being in the public eye you expect to get some stick, but it’s easy to forget how far things have progressed in the intervening years since I started. Back then a maiden was a Disney princess, not an opportunity in the 14:20 and no software or API existed. I and other early pioneers had to create all that, we didn’t’ come along to make a fast buck off the market. We had to make a leap of faith. That leap of faith was centred around trading the markets and I’m pleased to say that is still the case for me all these years later.
I still really enjoy trading and analysing the markets. That’s at the forefront of everything I do and I feel it’s really important that is the case. I couldn’t recommend something that I couldn’t do myself. If you look at Ascot last week, take everything else in the Bet Angel business you see over the same week and its turnover didn’t even match my results at Ascot. In a world of bluff and bluster, it’s important to understand that after all these years actually trading the markets is my primary aim and motivation.
As it stands, it looks like I’ll be back behind my desk year and I can’t wait!