We’ve all had them…the dreaded losing run. But what causes them ? Well, providing you’re punting with a profitable edge in the first place, the answer is probability.
For example, Joe Punter has a ROI of 20% from backing 30% winners at 3-1 and encounters the following sequence of results during one weeks punting…
W3-1 W3-1 W3-1 L L L L L L L L L L L L L L W3-1 W3-1 W3-1
So, Joe has just backed 30% winners at an average price of 3-1 for an ROI of 20% despite backing 14 consecutive losers – matching his average returns. So here the losing run is the result of probability and the law of averages.
Losing runs can also become exaggerated if the average price per selection goes up.
The next week our friend Joe encounters the following sequence of results, but at an average price of 5-1.
W5-1 W5-1 L L L L L L L L L L L L L L L L W5-1 W5-1
Again Joe has achieved a ROI of 20% despite backing 16 consecutive losers. The increased losing run in this case is down simply to the average odds per selection going up from 3-1 to 5-1, but again probability and the law of averages has resulted in a pronounced losing run.
Another phenomenon which can contribute to losing runs is when form lines (and the form book go out of the window). This usually happens during the summer months when prolonged heavy rain renders the going soft one week before returning to the usual firm ground the next. The result? Unreliable form lines that produce exaggerated losing runs.
Also, you have to ask yourself why your commencing betting bank is set, at say 50 pts. It’s not because you’re expecting to back 49 consecutive losers, just that losing balances can come together and make significant inroads into the bank.
Unfortunately a day will come when you will lose half your bank, but that’s the point of having it in the first place. Despite the pronounced losing run/ balance we still have the other half of the bank in place to claw that back and then go on to ratchet up some profit.
To cope with a losing run you need to put results into perspective at all times. This will address the psychological pitfalls of coping with reverals that are outside of the norm. The betting bank takes care of the financial side of things.
Admittedly these examples are exaggerated. But they do duly address the anatomy of the losing run.

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