Arbitrage Strategy for the bet365 4/1+ Feature Race Offers

My overall aim is to wait until I spot a good situation and then make both bets together. However, there will inevitably be a delay of a second or two between them.

In general, just before a race I prefer to back with bet365 first and then lay once I have seen the confirmation screen from them. That way my maximum exposure is kept to a minimum. Exchange prices go up and down all the time. Once the books have cut a price it is much less likely to return.

I also want to see alot of cash queuing up at the second and third best prices on the exchange in case the best price has disappeared before I have hit the “confirm” button.

When I look at the Early Prices in the morning I sometimes queue a speculative “lay price” first to see if anyone bites. But I will only do this if it is giving me a “proper arb”.

Your First Free SNR Bet (Stage 2)

OK, so you have followed my basic strategy and eventually your first winner arrives. Now, the first thing to remember is that your free bet goes on the very next race in the series. You don’t get a choice about which race. Use it or lose it.

•    From bet365’s Home Page press the red “offers and promotions” button to see a chronological list of the offer races.
•    Bet365 run two similar offers:4/1+ Feature Races and 4/1+ Channel Four Races. The Channel Four races are shown live on British TV every Saturday afternoon (and at selected race meetings during the week.) You can’t transfer your free bet between the two series. If your first winner is on a Feature Race, the free bet is on the next Feature race and if your winner is on a Ch4 race, your free bet goes on the next Ch4 race.

•    During the week, the offer normally covers two races a day. There shouldn’t be any time pressure. On a Saturday, the Channel Four offer will cover seven or eight races from two or three courses. Sometimes the scheduled start times are only five minutes apart and when there are delays it can get pretty hectic.

Beginners beware!

Also, you must place this free bet using cash from your account. If it loses they will refund you (normally within one hour). But you must have enough cash in your account so that if they are late in settling the first winner you still have sufficient funds to place the “free bet”.

To make the best use of our Stake Not Returned Free Bet we should try to find a good match on a horse with odds of at least 7/1 (I hope to write an article showing the proof of this soon). We also need to adjust our lay stake so that we are underlaying compared to before.

•    It is crucial to remember that we must now reduce our lay stake on the exchange. It is doing this that will guarantee us an overall profit
Its time to place our “free bet” and we see a likely-looking match. 8.00 (7/1) with bet365 8.50 (15/2) on the exchange. After a little tinkering with the spreadsheet we arrive at:

1.    If the horse loses our bet with bet365 will be refunded. So our profit will be the lay stake less commission. Start again at stage 1 for the next race
2.    If the horse wins we collect from bet365 as normal. But because we have reduced the amount laid on the exchange, we pay out less than we collect
3.    If the horse wins the only adjustment made to our bet365 account is to add our winnings. The free bet rolls on to the next race. Repeat stage 2
4.    Our profit from the race is X despite the fact that 8.00 and 8.50 is not an especially close match. The better the match the more profit it will deliver
5.    There is a case for laying slightly more than the amount shown in the picture to equalize the outcomes of winning and losing. Here, if the horse wins you get X and another free bet. If it loses you only get X.
6.    Our overall profit is X less any loss incurred on the first race. One or two winners a week should generate X/year

Bet365 4/1+Feature Race Summary

My experience is that once you have had a winner, locking in a profit on the next race becomes routine. The key is to get a good match on the first race.

•    On a X bet I don’t really want a loss of more X on the first race. Most of the time I escape with a loss of between X and X.

I’ve tried to show all the problems I have encountered with this offer. There are also the normal internet gaming risks to consider. You may lose your connection at a critical moment; the exchange servers can go offline leaving your bet unmatched.

However, I’ve been doing this offer virtually every day for six months. Almost all of the time it goes “according to plan” and I get both bets on at the prices I had hoped for. So far, I have not had any major disasters.

When you are starting out, there are two things to constantly bear in mind:

•    Always keep one eye on the clock. Give yourself enough time to put on both bets. Races described as live by television are delayed by 7-10 seconds.
•    If you are going to match, then MATCH! Matched betting is about containing risk not trying to anticipate what the market will do next. If you see a good match, take it. If you don’t, another matched bettor will. Don’t be too greedy.

I hope you found this article useful. If you have any questions please leave a comment.

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