Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Overlay Markets And Multiple Selections

When handicapping horse races, it is critical to focus on those markets in which there is at least one overlay. However, contrary to received wisdom, the professional sportstrader does not just trade the specific overlays but instead trades one or more additional horses (possibly including an underlay) with the goal of spreading his risk while maximizing his long-term median income. An excellent worked example of this approach is detailed in Appendix V of Taking Chances.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Graded Stakes: Dosage And Live Longshots

With respect to handicapping classic generation (i.e. 3yo colts and fillies) graded stakes races around the world, it is often difficult to get the relevant data (past performances, trainer statistics, and so on) to make an informed selection. However, pedigree details are usually available and using dosage it is certainly possible to identify some live longshots.
For example, in the recent French 2000 Guineas, using past renewals (DI=1.85, CD=0.43) as a guideline dosage would have identified Lucayan (DI=1.80, CD=0.50) as the number one ranked contender (Won, 33/1).
Food for thought?

Sunday, April 01, 2012

Finding Good Bets In Lotteries

An MAA award-winning paper from 2011, Finding Good Bets In Lotteries, combining expected value and portfolio theory.

Tuesday, January 03, 2012

Edelman Sharpe Ratio

David Edelman, Quantitative Finance lecturer, handicapper, and author derives a sports trading version of the Sharpe Ratio on page 28 of "The Compleat Horseplayer".
SR = (ProbWin - (1 / DecimalOdds)) / Sqrt(ProbWin * (1 - ProbWin))
For example, with the following 'investments', A is judged to be slightly better than B in terms of expected return per unit of risk:
A: ProbWin = 45%, DecimalOdds = 2.60
SR = (0.45 - (1 / 2.6)) / Sqrt(0.45 * (1 - 0.45))
= 0.13142
B: ProbWin = 31%, DecimalOdds = 4.00
SR = (0.31 - (1 / 4.0)) / Sqrt(0.31 * (1 - 0.31))
= 0.12973