Backing short-priced favourites is one of the better betting strategies to employ. As we have discussed in another post, this is for a number of reasons.
Firstly, because a number of studies in different sports have shown that you do better, relatively speaking, backing short-priced favourites than backing longshots. Statistically speaking you will lose a lot more money backing outsiders than favourites over the long term.
Secondly, backing short-priced means you tend to have shorter losing streaks and longer winning streaks, which makes it easier to handle from a psychological point of view and allows you to build a bank more quickly.
Related to this, it also allows you to stake at higher levels than if you were backing longshots.
For example, placing $100 on 1.30 shots will be a lot more sustainable and manageable than putting $100 on 30.0 shots.
Backing those 30.0 shots, you might easily go 50, 60 or even 100 bets without having a winner. The losses to your bank would be quite considerable.
However, when backing at 1.30 you are statistically likely to have a lot more winners, and losing runs of more than a few bets are unlikely.
What exactly should our staking plan be for backing short-priced favourites though? We’ll have a look at this question below.
How to Back Short-Priced Favourites
When betting on short-priced favorites, it’s crucial to manage your bankroll properly to minimize your risk and maximize your profits.
- Set a betting bankroll: This is the amount of money you’re willing to bet in total. It’s essential to set a budget and stick to it to avoid losing more money than you can afford.
- Determine your unit stake: Your unit stake is the amount of money you’ll bet on each selection. It’s recommended to bet no more than 1-2% of your betting bankroll on each bet. For example, if you have a $1,000 bankroll and were betting 2% of it, that would mean a stake of $20.
Betting Bank Example:
|Bank Size: $1,000||Risk per trade: 1%||Stake: $10|
|Bank Size: $2,000||Risk per trade: 1%||Stake: $20|
|Bank Size: $3,000||Risk per trade: 1%||Stake: $30|
|Bank Size: $4,000||Risk per trade: 1%||Stake: $40|
- Identify short-priced favorites with value: Even though short-priced favorites have low odds, it’s still possible to find value bets. Look for situations where the odds are longer than you think they should be, based on the form and statistics of the players, teams or horses involved.
- Place your bets: Once you’ve identified short-priced favorites with value, place your bets according to your staking plan. Remember to stick to your unit stake, regardless of how confident you are in the selection.
- Track your results: Keep track of your bets and their outcomes to evaluate the effectiveness of your staking plan. Adjust your strategy as needed to improve your profitability.
Staking Plans for Short-Priced Favourites
When looking at staking plans for short-priced favourites, it’s important to first consider the average odds you are backing at.
Backing selections at average odds of 1.10 will have a very different staking plan to backing selections at average odds of 1.70, for example.
Below is a table which illustrates the maximum likely losing run from a given strike rate:
|Strike rate||Highest likely losing run for 1000 bets|
So for example if a system has a strike rate of 50% then over the course of 1000 bets you could expect to have a losing run of 10 bets at any stage.
Now obviously things do not always go according to plan! The numbers in this table are just based on mathematical formulas about percentage chances. We all know that in the real world we can have horrendous bad luck and endure losing streaks much longer than the statistics would say we are supposed to have. Sods law they call it!
So to calculate your stake per bet you should multiply the maximum losing run by at least 3 and some people would say at least 5 to be on the safe side.
There is no hard and fast rule on this – ultimately it is up to you based on your aversion to risk.
So taking our example of a system that has a 50% strike rate, the table above tells us that you are likely to have a losing run of 10 for 1000 bets placed. So you might want to treble this, giving you a level of potentially 30.
Let’s say your bank was £1,000. You would then divide £1,000 by 30 giving you £33.33, or 3.3%, to stake on each selection.
Or if you want to be on the safer side, you could divide £1,000 by 50 giving you £20 stakes, or 2% of your bank.
As we say though, the staking plan should vary depending on what your strike rate is. In the above example it was 50%, but what if it was much higher, at say 90%?
Looking at the table above again, we can see that with a strike rate of 90%, you could expect a losing run of 3 bets per 1000 placed.
Multiply that by three and you have 9, so you might want to risk 10-11% of your bank on each bet. Or to be a bit safer, you could decide to half this and risk just 5%, just in case there are some unexpected drawdowns and losing runs.
We often see insufficient betting banks being used that risk wipeout, so we would err on the side of caution when selecting your stake size.
Running Through An Example
Okay so we’ve looked at the importance of betting banks, how to select one and then how to choose your stake size based on the expected strike rate of your strategy.
Now let’s run through a full example of executing a staking plan when backing short-priced favourites:
Let’s say you have a betting bankroll of $1,000, and you’ve identified a strategy for backing short-priced favourites and what the average strike rate of that strategy is likely to be. Here’s an example of how you could apply the staking plan:
- Set a betting bankroll: you’ve set your betting bankroll at $1,000.
- Determine your unit stake: your expected strike rate is 50% so you decide to bet 2% of your bankroll on each selection, so your unit stake is $20.
- Identify short-priced favorites with value: you’ve done your research and found a football match where a heavily favored team has odds of 1.50 to win. Based on your analysis, you think the team has a 70% chance of winning the match, which means the true odds should be around 1.40.
- Place your bets: You decide to bet $20 on the favored team to win. Your potential profit if the team wins is $10 ($20 x 1.50).
- Track your results: The favored team wins, and you win your bet. You’ve made a profit of $10. You record this bet and outcome in your betting journal.
You could repeat this process for other short-priced favorites with good value, always sticking to your unit stake and betting bankroll. By doing so, you can manage your risk effectively and potentially earn consistent profits over time.
Trying to select an appropriate staking plan for a betting strategy can be tricky. When backing short-priced favourites, the advantage is that you are likely to have more winners than if backing longshots, meaning you can use higher staking.
The exact staking you use depends on your appetite for risk and there are no hard and fast rules about staking size. However, it is worth looking at the likelihood of losing streaks in deciding on your stakes.
The table in the article above above sets out statistical probabilities of losing streaks based on the strike rate of a betting strategy. So multiplying the expected losing streaks by 3-5 times would give a degree of safety, given that things can often turn out worse than we expect!
To really be on the safe side and avoid the risk of bank wipeout, you may then want to halve the staking. This is a good rule of thumb we have found from using betting systems over the years – always hope for the best, but plan for the worst!
Having a sensible staking plan is very important and not over-exposing yourself is an important part of successful betting.