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Old 05-24-2012, 10:44 AM   #1
Ted Craven
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RDSS Learn to Win - Contest Announcement & Discussion


Announcing a New Contest on Pace and Cap: ‘RDSS – Learn to Win’


Thanks to the generous sponsorship and logistical support of several members, I am pleased to announce a new, ongoing monthly Contest here at Pace and Cap, beginning June 1. The Contest will be called ‘RDSS – Learn to Win’, with focus on learning to use the Methodology tools and enhancing your current skills.

Concept

The Contest idea was proposed by new RDSS user Ray Kuah (aka buffaloxp). Ray was part of the ‘RDSS Rebels’ team in the recent Team competition and expressed that although he had been enjoying and profiting to a certain extent from learning the Sartin Methodology and using RDSS, he felt he didn’t understand it as well as he could and would really enjoy seeing a lot more analysis of races using RDSS. And not simply people’s Selections, but more explanation as to WHY and HOW. So, being a practical businessman – he decided to invest in a monthly Contest whose purpose would be to encourage participants to not only make selections, but to EXPLAIN their process. By this means, he hopes to LEARN more about the various ways that successful practitioners use the tools and concepts, and to profit from that education. He also hopes that other newer (and long time) RDSS users can benefit from the educational experience. Hence the Contest name: ‘RDSS – Learn to Win’. I am very grateful to Ray for his dedication to being a Winner and for making this primary ongoing funding commitment.

Ray’s teammate Patrick K (pktruckdriver), who won a nice cash prize in the ‘Sartin/Bradshaw Road to the Roses Contest’, has also donated some of his prize to help fund this Contest – thank you Patrick!. So together with Ray, and with RDSS data sponsorship from TrackMaster, we are able to offer the following ongoing prizes each and every month:

Monthly Prizes

Every month - first and second prizes of either $100 cash, or a one month Unlimited RDSS Data Bundle (Charts+PPs) worth $160.
Every month - third prize of $50 cash.
(If anyone else likes the concept of this approach to learning and wishes to contribute either one-time or ongoing to the Contest prize fund, please contact me by email or Private Message.)

Contest Manager

Our Contest Manager will be Bill Varone! Bill will be responsible for scoring, regularly updating the Contest Standings, answering questions about rules, taking the lead on resolving any disputes, and generally getting things done! I will be available to assist Bill when he needs it. Thank you Bill for your generosity in stepping up to the plate for us!


Eligibility

Current RDSS users. Or, current RDSS evaluators (i.e. the 30 day free evaluation). This would of course include any RDSS subscribers whose primary analysis approach is the Matchup, or who mainly use RDSS to export to older Sartin programs for final analysis. Any type of use of RDSS is good. If anyone wants to sign up for the free RDSS evaluation in order to participate in the Contest, you are most welcomed - just write me!


Contest Themes: Learning & Consistency

One purpose of this introduction thread is to flesh out the precise details and rules for the Contest, and feedback is welcomed! Here are the main themes we want the Contest to embrace:

1. Learning. Participants and observers should be able learn more about using RDSS by watching contestants’ selections and explanations. Contestants get a mythical $2000 bankroll and must make 20 $100 race selections per month, Win or Place or Win/Place wagers on 1 or 2 horses per race. Losses are deducted from the bankroll, Wins are added. In addition, in order to count for the Contest, you must also post a screenshot illustrating HOW and WHY you made the choices you made. I will provide a video explaining how to make screen captures and how to post them online.

You must post your selections before the official Equibase Off Time of a race, and you may post your explanatory screenshot at the same time or you may wait until no later than 12 noon the following day. But if no explanatory screenshot accompanies a race selection, the posted selections will be graded as a non-win and no mutuel points will be awarded (see Scoring below). So, if you post a selection but fail to post an explanatory screenshot, if the selection wins you get no credit for the winnings. Even if you lose a race, you are expected to post an explanation: losing is part of long-term winning, so please don’t post a selection unless you have the time and inclination to post the follow up explanation. Posting the explanation will force you to examine your analysis and wagering approach. If you are a successful on a long-term basis, others will learn from your skill – or, you will learn from demonstrations by other successful practitioners.

2. Consistency. Hitting a $200 Win bet is a thrilling, yet unsatisfying (to others) way to win a contest and can be a demonstration of short-term luck rather than long-term skill. We wish to emphasize consistency as a foundational concept of the Sartin Methodology. Thus, Win mutuels will be capped at 20-1 ($42.00) and Place mutuels at 10-1 ($22.00). Further, there will be a consistency scoring system as part of this Contest, though I am not yet sure how best to implement it. Here is one idea that I’d really like feedback on please:

Hit Rate (i.e. 'batting average') tallied for every player ongoing, in each month's contest. Hit Rate = number of events (i.e. 20 per month) / number of Wins or Places. For example, a player makes bets in 20 races in a month. In 11 of those races, a horse you bet on runs either 1st or 2nd (or both, in the case of 2 horses). The Hit Rate = 11/20 = .550 (or 55%). A players total bankroll ($2000 – 20 x $100 + winnings from the 11 races) is multiplied by the Hit Rate to get the Final Score. For example, in the 11 of 20 races hit, a player has net winnings of $2700 and a Hit Rate of .550. Their Final Score is $2700 x .550 = $1485. The Final Score is a combination of Net Winnings and Consistency.

In a separate (extreme) example, suppose someone hit the maximum $42 Win mutuel 3 times on a one horse Win bet – and lost all the other 17 races in a month for a Hit Rate of 3/20 = .150 (15%). Their winnings are $6300 - $2000 bet = $4300 net x .150 = a Final Score of $645.

If anyone else has an idea on how to incorporate consistency into the scoring scheme, I would appreciate some comments along with a couple of well thought out examples. Thanks very much in advance!

Miscellaneous

Prizes will be awarded monthly, then a new contest will begin. The Top 3 finishers each month on the basis of whatever Scoring System is finally chosen will divide the Prizes. If you are an RDSS evaluator, you can choose an Annual Subscription instead of the $100 cash prize.

You can play as many races per day as you like, seven days a week. As soon as you have hit 20 races, your play for the month is over. Thus you can start any time during the month, evenings, weekends, whenever suits you schedule and permits you the time to document your decisions. Each month's Contest ends at 12 midnight on the last day of each month (though follow up screenshots can still be posted the following day). If you have not posted 20 races by the end of the month, while you may indeed qualify for bragging rights for a good bankroll and consistency result, only those who have posted 20 races will qualify for the prizes. (If you post more than 20 races in a month, no worries and no penalty - the first 20 are the ones which count.)

Each Player will start their own thread in each month’s Contest Forum and post their selections, screenshots and explanations in their own thread.

You don’t have to report your winnings or losses – the Contest Manager will do that, as final judge. However you are welcomed to brag about your Wins (or Losses, despite consistent and reasonable decisions)! Or elaborate subsequently on insights or 'teachable moments' related to your races.

You can bet Win or Place on 1 horse, or you can bet Win on 2 horses or Place on 2 horses, or Win/Place on 1 or 2 horses, or Win/Place on 1 horse and either Win or Place on another horse. Any combo of Win or Place bets on 1 or 2 horses.

Since the bet for each race is exactly $100, if your bet doesn't add up to $100 the Contest Manager will make it add up by a predefined set of rules for correcting the posted bet. For example, if you type $40 Win 4 and 5, this will be changed to $50 Win 4 and 5. If you type $30 WP 1 and 2, this will be changed to $25 WP 1 and 2. If you type a horse Program number which does not exist, the money on that horse is added to any remaining horse. If there are no remaining horses, the bet doesn't count. Bets on Entries include all members of the entry - you don't have to type 1A or 2B.

You may state specific instructions on how to treat your bet should one of your horses be scratched, for example: bet the remaining horse or whether the entire bet should be cancelled. If there are no such instructions, the remaining horse (if any) gets the same bets as the scratched horse.

The Contest Manager will post a periodic Scoring update of all players in the current month’s Contest.


Posting Bet Explanations and Screenshots

There will be a tutorial video on how to make a screen capture and how to attach images to your post. You can post the explanation and screenshot either before the race or by noon Eastern Time the next day. If you don't follow up an initial simple post of picks with a screenshot and explanation, even if you win the bet, the race is counted as a non-win and uses up one of your 20 races (or 'at bats') for that month's Contest.

Players’ comments about their decision process can be simple, but should be reproducible by someone studying the posts. For example, after posting a BL/BL screenshot in your first race, you may comment also that you use Default Adjustments, always begin with the #2 Paceline Selection Strategy (Best of Last 3 Comparable Perceptor), then made 2 line changes (horse #1 and #7) because the PSS picked the maiden win line in a race against winners. In subsequent races, you wouldn’t have to restate those details, simply refer to 'the previously stated process' but take a minute to explain any unique or non-standard decisions made in a given race. After a couple of races, presumably the process would become fairly streamlined. If you make unique decisions in each race, you must give at least some clues as to what process you employ. You don’t have to give away your secrets or models – you may say: I chose the 3rd and 4th ranked BL horses because my model for this track distance and surface show that Hidden Energy plus 2nd Call position points that way. Or, I bet on the Lone Early, etc.

Perhaps you use NewPace, which identifies 2 Earlies and 2 Lates per race and you typically box 3 or 4 horses in Exactas. In this Contest, you may pick 2 of those 4 horses per race in Win or Place bet combos, but specify why you chose those particular 2 out of 4 horses.

Some subjectivity may be employed by the Contest Manager (or an advisory panel) to judge whether someone is giving at least a reasonable accounting of how they made their decisions. At least in the first month as we find out how (or if) this format works, there will likely be some latitude in how much explanation is required. But a RDSS screen shot of some RDSS screen you use for decision making will be a minimum. Feel free to make as long a description as you please, including video! The whole point of the Contest is 'Learn to Win' – showing and hopefully teaching others what you do to win - within reason. Below you will see 2 examples of posts: one rather more involved and one simpler.

We will watch and evaluate and refine the rules and systems for this Contest as time goes on.


Practice Week - May 26 - 31 - iron out the bugs, answer questions - no prizes


The time this coming week before Friday June 1 is practice time. Feel free to post your picks in a thread in your User Name in the Contest Practice Forum (http://paceandcap.com/forums/forumdisplay.php?f=104 ) and practice posting screenshots. This will give Players and the Contest Manager a chance to work out early bugs!

Feedback

Please – give any and all feedback and suggestions in this discussion thread. Final rules will be posted in a separate thread which Players will be asked to confirm they have read and agree to - or else request clarification. From previous Contest experience, this will likely save unfortunate later misunderstandings.

In Summary, the purpose of the Contest is to help both newcomers and experienced users to learn and teach by documenting their decision process. No doubt this will be a learning process for everybody, but hopefully we will have many months (or years) for this to evolve - as long as it is valuable and fun. If anyone wishes to contribute either once or ongoing to the Prize funding, please send me an email or Private Message.


Thank you for taking time to read this and I hope that hundreds of Players will choose to participate in this ongoing Contest!

Yours,

Ted
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Last edited by Ted Craven; 05-25-2012 at 10:57 PM.
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Old 05-25-2012, 10:56 AM   #2
Bill V.
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Example

Hi Ted

I made this short example of my selections for a race ( I won )
last night
Maybe this will help

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Old 05-25-2012, 05:59 PM   #3
Ted Craven
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Another example of screenshot and explanation

2012 Preakness

I accepted as Win contenders anyone who Won or Placed in a G1 or G2 stakes as a 3 year old. Everyone else was a secondary contender (i.e. not for Win). I chose to not use the Derby line for any of these remaining contenders (per Doc Sartin guidelines), instead using their other best G1 or G2 stakes route line this year.

I chose to not bet on the race, due to too low odds on both I'll Have Another and Bodemeister (though my wife Alison did bet $2 WPS on IHA ).

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Old 05-26-2012, 10:58 AM   #4
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If the odds on the horses you bet in a race fall below a certain number, say 2.0, can you leave instructions to cancel that horse and put all your money on the other one, or if both horses fall below that, leave instructions to cancel the race altogether?
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Old 05-26-2012, 02:40 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by barb craven View Post
If the odds on the horses you bet in a race fall below a certain number, say 2.0, can you leave instructions to cancel that horse and put all your money on the other one, or if both horses fall below that, leave instructions to cancel the race altogether?
I will leave it to Bill V to decide if he thinks the Contest Manager should be providing those services (namely helping you make conditional wagers).

What you describe above is a pretty complex conditional wager (i.e. make a bet on a horse depending on odds of a different horse), and I'm not sure even AmWest could accommodate that. Perhaps simpler conditionals might be OK, e.g. if a horse goes off above or below stated odds reported on the Result Chart, the bet stands, otherwise it is cancelled. You could state that if one of 2 horses' bets are cancelled, all bets are cancelled, OR - the remaining horse gets the cancelled horse's bets (just like if it was scratched).

Again, I'll let Bill decide on this one - it could get complex!

Ted
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Old 05-28-2012, 11:25 AM   #6
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If I have stated my method of picking horses and which ones I'm going to bet on with screen shots at the beginning of my thread, do I have to put up my explanations every time, or just the screen shots?
If so, that might be a deterrent to some who might otherwise join in the contest. It takes time that some might find too onerous.
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Old 05-28-2012, 11:26 AM   #7
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Of course, if I change my method, then a whole new explanation would be in order.
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Old 05-28-2012, 11:28 AM   #8
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In real life, I would probably put the remaining horse to win and place, or just pass.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ted Craven View Post
I will leave it to Bill V to decide if he thinks the Contest Manager should be providing those services (namely helping you make conditional wagers).

What you describe above is a pretty complex conditional wager (i.e. make a bet on a horse depending on odds of a different horse), and I'm not sure even AmWest could accommodate that. Perhaps simpler conditionals might be OK, e.g. if a horse goes off above or below stated odds reported on the Result Chart, the bet stands, otherwise it is cancelled. You could state that if one of 2 horses' bets are cancelled, all bets are cancelled, OR - the remaining horse gets the cancelled horse's bets (just like if it was scratched).

Again, I'll let Bill decide on this one - it could get complex!

Ted
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