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Fixed Percentage Minimum Betting


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Fixed % Minimum Betting - A proposed betting approach

Perhaps the prime objective for a horse race bettor serious about reaching  professional status should be . . . finding out how to best handle losing streaks.  Any valid long-term money management method must take this extremely important factor into account.

The "Kelly" betting method (to be discussed another article) is optimal for increasing the bankroll during a positive series of wagers where winners are numerous enough to have produced a flat bet profit; however, the same method can decimate a race bettor's hard-won profits during even short losing streaks.

The most used of all horse betting approaches is likely the "Fixed Percentage" approach.  This is where a fixed % of the race betting bankroll (example - 4%) is always used to figure the next bet amount.  This approach (which essentially will become "flat betting" when a 'comfort-level' ceiling has been reached) somewhat smoothes the more radical bankroll gyrations of the Kelly approach, but it also still cuts deeply into bankroll profits during losing streaks.

I believe it was James Quinn who, about 20 years back, wrote about a method he called, "Fixed Percentage - Minimum."  This is one of the better money management methods for lessening the often devastating effects of grouped clusters of losses - i.e. the dreaded, yet inevitable, losing streak.

A warning: The F%M method performs very poorly when you are in an alternating pattern.  A pattern like this: w,l,w,l,w,w,l,l,w,l,l,w.  But because most players don't come close to hitting 45-50 % of their win bets, for this pattern to last over an extended series of wagers is rare.  The usual win/loss patterns for most players most of the time settle into clusters of (smaller) groups of wins and (larger) groups of losses.

Why the F%M method performs poorly in the alternating pattern runs will become apparent.  Here are the betting "rules" -

You will bet a fixed percentage of your starting bankroll after every winning race - but you will bet only a non-changing base amount after every loss.

Let's say you set your fixed percentage at 5% - that also becomes the non-changing base bet.  If your starting horse betting bankroll is $1000, your starting bet, and your un-changing base bet then becomes $50.

So you can get a better idea of this approach, below is an example of the method applied to a series of 15 races.  Gold numbers are the races where the base bet minimum was used after a loss:

Bank Roll Bet @ 5% Pays Profit/Loss
$1000 $50 $8.00 +$150
$1150 $58 $7.20 +$150.80
$1300.80 $65 x -$65
$1235.80 $50 x -$50
$1185.80 $50 x -$50
$1135.80 $50 $11.00 +$225
$1360.80 $68 $6.20 +$142.80
$1503.60 $75 x -$75
$1428.60 $50 x -$50
$1378.60 $50 x -$50
$1328.60 $50 x -$50
$1278.60 $50 x -$50
$1228.60 $50 x -$50
$1178.60 $50 x -$50
$1128.60 $50 $7.40 +135

Now let's compare that same series to a straight fixed percentage of bankroll betting approach:

Bank Roll Bet @ 5% Pays Profit/Loss
$1000 $50 $8.00 +$150
$1150 $58 $7.20 +$150.80
$1300.80 $65 x -$65
$1235.80 $62 x -$62
$1173.80 $59 x -$59
$1114.80 $56 $11.00 +$252
$1366.80 $68 $6.20 +$142.8
$1509.60 $75 x -$75
$1434.60 $72 x -$72
$1362.60 $68 x -$68
$1294.60 $64 x -$64
$1230.60 $62 x -$62
$1168.60 $58 x -$58
1110.60 $55 x -$55
$1055.60 $52 $7.40 +$140.40


The horse race betting bankroll using the F%M method (first table) has retained 5.7% more profits - $1263.60 versus $1196.00 in the standard fixed percentage approach (shown in the second table).

This in a good series of 33% winning race wagers at average mutuel $7.96.  The difference would be even greater in a very poor series (say a streak of 11 straight losing races) that resulted after fairly large profits (say a doubling of the original bankroll) had first been accumulated.

As always - test this on your historical horse betting records and see what would have resulted.  You may like what you find!  

That's it for now  -       As always, Good Luck and Good Wagering!


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 Horse Race Betting Articles

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Basic Betting Philosophy 

 Basic Betting Approaches 

 Basic Parlay Betting 

 Progression Betting 

 Considering The Odds 

 Betting Place Parlays 

 The Secret To Betting Profits 

 Win Betting 

 Base Bet + Square Root Betting 

 Fixed Percentage Minimum Betting 

 Betting The Exacta 

 Lay Betting 

 Place and Show Betting 

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