NO GOLD AT END OF STAKING RAINBOW; BETTER BETTING: It's a Strong Selection Method That Brings in Cash

The Mirror (London, England), October 30, 2010 | Go to article overview

NO GOLD AT END OF STAKING RAINBOW; BETTER BETTING: It's a Strong Selection Method That Brings in Cash


Byline: CHRIS FORWOOD

A LOT of readers have sent in their own favourite selection and staking methods which are always interesting.

But isn't it amazing how many people still want to think that they can compensate for a poor selection method with a staking system which will deliver gold.

If only. In the old song 'The Man Who Broke The Bank at Monte Carlo' gave such ideas some credence. There are two candidates who could have been 'the man' but the most likely is Charles Wells who broke the bank, but gave it all - and a whole lot more - back again.

On his first visit to Monte Carlo in July 1891 it is said he had a betting bank of pounds 4,000 which he had obtained by defrauding investors in one of his bogus inventions - a 'musical jump rope' - no, I have no idea what that might be either.

He played roulette for 11 hours and won a million French francs, helped by at one stage winning 23 out of 30 spins of the wheel. He stayed for three days in total and made another million.

Wells returned, this time in a big yacht, in the winter of 1892.

He started winning again, but then it all went wrong. He lost his money and that of his investors.

He owed a fortune and tried to do a runner but was stopped while still in France and ended up being jailed in England for fraud.

At his first visit Wells claimed he won the money though skill, but later admitted that he was playing a high-risk 'system' called a martingale, doubling up the stake following a loss.

He was hoping a staking system would overcome the house advantage.

For a short while it did, but in the long term house advantages, like tax and death, get us all.

Even well over 100 years after Wells, hundreds of punters every day think they can beat the house by varying their stakes - I am afraid to say, you cannot.

The martingale is the most obvious of the increasing stakes 'systems'.

If you back a loser, just double the stake on your next bet, and keep doubling it until you hit a winner.

Now, a reasonably competent tipster will have a strike-rate of around 30 percent.

So somewhere between one in three and one in four of their selections will win. …

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