Tuesday, 4 December 2012

2012 Season Review (Betting)

This year's been pretty good. Excepting 2009, when I got a 70/1 tip right and got about 4 tips right for Monza (still my best race to date), it's been the best season so far. It's also the best full season (my tipping in 2009 was patchier than a pirate's face).

On the whole, as you'd expect, I'm pretty happy with how things went. However, there are still some areas for improvement. I've still got a bad habit of starting a season poorly and now have a tradition of a second half dip in form. That said, I finished ahead on race bets (both ways), qualifying bets (both ways), title bets and on the 2013 drivers' market (the latter two were not tipped specifically in my pb2 articles so I won't go into them too much).

The latter half of the season began fairly well, but from Singapore to India I endured four successive red races. A small part of that can be ascribed to bad luck. I certainly benefited from good luck at other times, but Alonso's failure to score a Japanese podium was probably due to the racing incident with Raikkonen. Mostly, I was just getting things a bit wrong.

Interestingly, hedging was much better in the first half of the season but worse in the second half. After 2011, when not hedging was approximately twice as profitable over the full year, this points to me getting more things nearly right. Happily, the season was slightly better (without hedging) than last and significantly better (with hedging) than 2011. Over the full season you would be slightly better off hedging your bets.

There was a substantial difference in the qualifying/racing split as well. They were almost exactly even for non-hedging, but with hedging my race profits were well over twice my qualifying profits (hedged qualifying profits were about two-thirds non-hedged qualifying profits, and hedged race profits were close to twice non-hedged race profits).

Qualifying was slightly odd. I got three tips wrong, then three right, then four wrong. The reason for only tipping at half the sessions was largely due to timezone issues (I like to see what P3 is like) and occasionally due to uncertainty/cowardice, perhaps related to weather. Laying Alonso at 1.14 in Valencia/Europe to reach Q3 was perhaps my favourite, and most profitable, tip of the year. Little bit lucky as he was very close, but some close calls didn't go my way.

Racing was generally more reliable, after the initial dodgy start and the late season slump mentioned above. On a hedged basis, from China to Belgium (11 races) I got at least one tip right and from Bahrain to Belgium (10 races) I only made two losses, one of which was of 50p (assuming £10 stakes). The other loss, Europe, coincided with my Alonso tip so the weekend remained green.

The green line (tips offered by commenters) did not go well. However, I think that's largely due to the way I structured it (opt-out, and with no hedging). It's also the case that if Mr. Putney had tipped his insurance-style bet on Button in Interlagos I think that would've put the green line into profitability.

Next year I'll listen to what the regulars want regarding the green line. My thoughts are to either axe it, or include it separately, make it opt-in and allow for hedges.

There were also several bets that I didn't tip. This was usually due to lack of liquidity, instant buyer's remorse or a sly early bet to try and see how it went. Alas, they did not end well and overall I finished behind on these.

Title bets, thanks to Abu Dhabi, went alright, with a green finish for Top 3 Raikkonen and Vettel getting the title. I cocked up regarding the Constructors', when I laid Red Bull when it seemed they'd get trounced by McLaren.

I also finished ahead on the 2013 drivers' market. I backed Massa at 4 after he got a podium in Japan, and backed four different drivers to replace Hamilton. Thankfully, Perez was at 9 so that ended quite nicely.

I'm pretty content with the season as a whole, but a bit displeased with the mid-season slump. Next year I plan on looking at the first race of the past few seasons and seeing how they panned out. I don't plan on betting on the 2013 title as yet, but suspect Perez and Raikkonen could offer the best odds right now.

So, let me know what you made of the bets this year, and what you think I should do regarding the green line.

Morris Dancer


Nigel said...

Still fancying Button a bit (in the purest championship betting sense) at current odds.

The just-confirmed rules changes are going to negate the existing Red Bull advantage in engineering front wing twisting and (more significantly) DRS in qualifying.

Next year's Pirellis may well suit the Button driving style a bit better - and in any event, McLaren will have learned enough this season about managing tyres, which are about as temperamental as is possible for them to be, in order to provide him with a car which plays to his strengths.

McLaren seem to have sorted their race day management. All that remains is reliability - and the lack of any major changes in the rules should make that easier to achieve too.

Even the qualifying thing is a bit of a red herring, as when the car is really to his liking, Button is no slouch. Providing the car is quick enough, he doesn't need that extra one or two tenths, as Perez is no Hamilton over one lap.

The only possible game changer I can see is the passive DRS that Lotus, and briefly Mercedes, played around with this season.
(Of course, it's quite conceivable that Newey will prove me wrong... and it's a long way to the first GP next year.)

Morris Dancer said...

Perez's qualifying form is hard to judge based on his time in a Sauber that was fast on race day and dodgy the day before.

I agree the tyres, apparently easy to warm and quick to go off, would appear to play to Button's strengths.

I must say I'm beginning to wonder if you might be right, but I'm loathe to make a bet so early.

Nigel said...

Perez - Kobayashi head to head:

Doesn't look like a one lap wonder to me, but naturally he hasn't been around for long & that could change. I still think he's unlikely to trouble Button too much on the Saturday.

Morris Dancer said...

Hard to compare Kobayashi qualifying in a Sauber to Button in a McLaren.

Have you backed Button for the title?

Nigel said...

I've opened a small trading position, and will add if the odds lengthen.

I'm not saying he'll win, but he has to be in with a shout on current info.

Morris Dancer said...

I must admit I'm thinking of putting a little on.

I agree with you that McLaren and Red Bull will probably have the best car. Whilst Perez is something of an unknown quantity he is fast. The tyres (easy to warm, rapid to degrade) would seem tailor made for Button.

I've got a little waiting if anyone wants to back Raikkonen or Perez at 25 (current lay odds are slightly shorter).

Hopefully we'll get some insight on the main site about how the aerodynamics look, as per this year.