Sunday, 16 June 2013

A look back at the ropey season so far



Traditionally, I bugger up the first 3-4 races then get my act together. Bizarrely, I managed to get a flying start in Oz but since then my tips have been ropier than a bondage shop.

I think it’s very important to categorise betting results according to luck or judgement, because the former should even itself out over the course of a season whereas the latter can (and must) be corrected by the person making the bet.

So, I’m going to concisely run down the bets I’ve made this year (NB I am only looking at the tips I’ve offered, not small bets I sometimes make without tipping, typically when there’s a lack of liquidity). Most of the early races are very far off to the east and I didn’t offer qualifying tips because Q3 ended at about 4am.

Australia

Qualifying tip - NA

Race tip - Ferrari to stop score at 5.5.

Although an uncharacteristically early tip for the race, due to qualifying being delayed for bad weather, I actually got this spot on. It’s hard to speculate at the start of a season but my predictions were generally accurate and Ferrari did top score.

Malaysia

Qualifying tip - NA

Race tip - Massa for a podium 2.64

Massa went into reverse at the start and never recovered. Pretty clear-cut case of a misjudgement on my part.

China

Qualifying tip - NA

Race tip - Vettel to win at 7

This was an odd one, where Vettel qualified ninth after not setting a time in Q3 so he could start on the medium tyres. There was a clear strategic divergence between him and Alonso/Raikkonen, but I jumped the wrong way and misjudged how things would go.

Bahrain

Qualifying tip - Alonso for pole at 4.5

First qualifying tip of the season due to the timezones being more agreeable. Alonso was fastest in P3 but a third of a second off in qualifying. A misjudgement, given that qualifying has been sewn up by Red Bull and Mercedes. However, the hedge was matched [the stats at the end are for a bet-and-forget approach to gambling].

Race tip - Alonso to win at 2.62

The Ferrari’s been competitive in the races all year, and third for Alonso is a little higher than he’s used to on the grid. A first ever (of its type) malfunction of Alonso’s DRS meant he had to pit early, and then pit a second time after the problem recurred, after which he lacked DRS throughout. I believe he would have had the pace to challenge Vettel had it not occurred. The problem is that it’s impossible to know for certain. I’ve chalked this up to bad luck.

Spain

Qualifying tips - Vergne to reach Q3 at 3.8, Massa for pole 14.5

Ironically I felt very confident about the Vergne tip and regretted the Massa one. Neither came off but the Massa hedge was matched at least. Vergne was a tenth and a half off Q3, so a misjudgement, albeit not a huge one, whereas Massa was never in the running and I’m staggered the hedge got matched [if I were counting hedged bets as winners I’d attribute this to good luck].

Race tip - Raikkonen to win at 4.8

Had a bit of a bad start and, from vague memory, was never really close enough after that to challenge for victory. A misjudgement on my part.

Monaco

Qualifying tip - Rosberg for pole at 1.95

He’d looked good all weekend and got pole. Pretty simple, for once.

Race tip - Raikkonen for a podium at 2.86

In retrospect this may be the most stupid bet of the year. Whilst Raikkonen could’ve moved up the field due to superior tyre management the safety cars were eminently predictable, and even though the red flag was perhaps unfortunate Monaco is probably the circuit where such a thing is likeliest. A clear misjudgement.


Canada

Qualifying tip - Hamilton for pole 3.2

He got within a tenth, and was seven-tenths up into the last corner when he made a mistake. However, weather conditions in Q3 were fairly stable. Although very close, this was a misjudgement on my part.

Race tip - Webber for a podium at 2.64

Webber was ahead of Alonso (just) and behind Hamilton when his nose got taken off entirely needlessly by Van Der Garde. Shortly thereafter he lost the place to Alonso and couldn’t pass Hamilton when Alonso could. I think that the loss of the nose is what cost him, so I’m considering this to be bad luck.


Results so far:
Qualifying -
1 winner, 4 losers
Of losers - 4 misjudgement, 0 bad luck
Of winners - 1 judgement, 0 good luck

Race -
1 winner, 6 loser s
Of losers - 3 misjudgement, 3 bad luck
Of winners - 1 judgement, 0 good luck

That’s interesting. In qualifying I’m red for bet-and-forget but green for hedged, and equally red for both measures in racing. 2 winners from 12 bets is bloody appalling. Even stripping out the ones I’ve considered unlucky it’d be just 2 from 9.

I’m hoping that paying closer attention to the track, the difference between qualifying and race pace and the temperature (because of its impact on tyre wear) will help lead to an improvement in the latter half of the season. This is, I think, my worst start to a season so far, but I have turned around late-season slumps before so it’s not impossible to recover.

Some hopefully useful bits and pieces I think I’ve noticed so far:
The Red Bulls (and, to a lesser extent, Mercedes) like colder temperatures.
Ferrari, Lotus and Force India prefer hotter weather.

The Mercedes is very good on slower bits of track (last section of Spain, Monaco) which should set them fair for Singapore.

As a rule, Mercedes goes backwards in a race, Ferrari, Lotus and Force India go forwards from their grid slots.

I think I’ve been backing winners a week late at several races.

In summary, I think I’ve been paying too little attention to underlying trends for each car and too much to the race-to-race results.

If anyone has other points to add, whether agreement or disagreement with the points I’ve made or something extra about either betting or F1 this season, please feel free to do so in the comments.

Morris Dancer



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