Guest post written by Paul Micelli
Sports betting has been a consistent marketplace for individuals with a trained eye for easy profits. Somewhat surprisingly, many of those who make the largest sums of money rarely place bets or wagers of their own. In fact, the market is currently jammed with former jockey, trainers, sport stars and pundits who promise untold riches based on their inside knowledge and experience.
The role of the sports tipster will hardly be a revelation to many long-term betting enthusiasts and most will already understand that the information they provide is speculative at best. However, recent times have seen a new addition to the gambling world in the shape of computer programs that claim to be able to analyse statistical information in order to provide a consistent list of potential winning opportunities.
The growth of the internet and the number of online betting facilities provided by major bookmakers has made the rise of computer-generated data almost inevitable but do these programs really offer insight analysis into sports events, or are they simply a modern-day equivalent to the charlatan services that have previously been offered elsewhere?
Somewhat surprisingly, there are actually a number of resources available that do deliver consistent results. The increased power of home computers and the presence of well-written programs that rely on mathematical data to offer selections have given many punters a distinct edge when it comes to placing bets. Computer-generated information can be processed in much shorter periods of time and to a certain degree, the guesswork associated with form analysis, trends and predictability have been replace with a solid framework of data that undoubtedly produces results. This has led to an increased number of potentially profitable betting opportunities that forego the tiresome practices of sitting over the dining room table armed with a notepad, pen and calculator.
Unfortunately, there is only a certain amount of information that these programs can generate with any consistency. Although form and performance can easily be factored into calculations, there are certain elements which can have a direct effect on wagers that a computer program will not be able to account for. Weather, team injuries and human error are just a few of the essential components that software will forego.
Over a sustained period of time, some of the best programs have been those that specialise in handicap betting. These particular resources have enjoyed unrivalled success in the American sports market, particularly in disciplines such as college football or basketball. Although these are sports that are not commonly wagered on within the UK, the accessibility of betting markets on the internet has seen an increasing number of punters looking ‘over the pond’ for profits and the use of computer-generated statistics has undoubtedly helped in the process of making effective selections.
Naturally, an increasing number of programs have become available that focus on the UK horse racing market and these have enjoyed varied levels of success. Many of these are simple to use and rely on downloadable content available from central servers that can update form and data within minutes. Unfortunately, the trial and error associated with these programs can often lead to significant losses before an effective option can be found. Although there is undoubtedly a place for sports software, betting enthusiasts are advised to only use them as a means of analysing information quickly. The fact that files can be so easily updated is also a massive benefit. However, these resources should rarely be used as virtual bibles and those who truly understand sports betting markets will still find that the human factor associated with most events will have a major effect on any potential outcome.