Saturday, December 13, 2008

Nits at the races

Went to Cheltenham races yesterday with Rob. Very enjoyable day overall, and we both ended up. As you'd expect with Ireland's two biggest rocks (allegedly), we started it as cautiously as we would a poker tournament, basically sitting out for the first two levels (races) while we assessed the competition and formulated our strategy. It's almost 2 decades since the ponies were my major source of income so it's fair to say my form reading skills are a tad rusty. One thing that immediately became apparent was that the betting puvlic nowadays is a lot more sophisticated: nearly all the techniques I used back then based around arbitrage and trend analysis are now very much widely known. So it's no longer as simple as backing third favourites on the Tote or whatever. Neverthless, I nitted my way to a small profit while Rob enjoyed a more high variance rollercoaster ride.

Anyway, once we had our strategy in place, we started to implement it. Mine was a little more risk averse than Rob's, which meant casting the web wider, meaning I started the day with a winner but Rob was not so lucky. My good start gradually turned into a slight loss just before the final race while Rob's racing Manhattan was also down. Mine swung back into slight profit on the last race while Rob, by now pot committed, virtually well all in on the second favourite who thankfully did the business leaving him up a very healthy sum on the day. Luckbox IMO.

My day could have ended a lot better as I'd also got on an 8 to 1 shot at 16 to 1 that was going very nicely until the bloody thing fell. Glue factory material, IMO.

Got back into Dublin just after the Poker Million final had kicked off. As soon as we landed, I switched on my phone and there were a number of texts from Mireille: first a rather forlorn one that Marty was down to 15K after losing AK v Liam's KK. Then one that Neilsen was out. We couldn't understand how Neilsen could be first out given that Marty had been down to 1.5 BBs but a quick phone call to Mireille confirmed that, in her words "Liam ballsed up raising with nothing much and tripled up Marty" and Marty was now back in the hunt. She left the phone beside the TV so I was able to give Rob a running commentary as we drove from the airport.

By the time we got to my place they were down to 4. Highest quality poker I've ever seen on TV, Marty and Eoghan were particularly brilliant. If anything, Eoghan was even more impressive as he had a lot more tough marginal decisions and seemed to get them all right. He was very unlucky that his KJ didn't hold after a brilliant call. But it was good to see Marty pull it off after so many near misses.



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