Preferential Sporting Investments of Cheltenham were a company I brought to your attention at the back end of last year after they scammed a fourfigure sum from a reader who trusted their promises.

Well, it would seem that they have reinvented themselves under a new name. I have already mentioned this within the eletter but must mention it here too as I am aware that some WRWM newsletter readers are not eletter readers.

My thanks (and yours too!) should be directed towards two readers: Brian Arnott for kindly scanning the “offer” to me, and Richard for pointing out the similarities with Preferential Sporting Investments of Cheltenham.

So what should you look out for?

You may be targeted to receive a mailshot from a company called Belmont Sporting Services of Suite 123, Westminster Chambers, 7 Hunter St, Chester CH1 2HR.

The offer from Belmont Sporting Services is pretty much identical to the offer put forward from Preferential Sporting Investments of Cheltenham (I suspect the accommodation addresses are carefully chosen for their connotations to racing – Cheltenham and Chester both have famous meetings).

How the con works…

As Belmont Sporting Services themselves say  (and this sums up what they purport to offer): “Our business is to use your money to placewagers on sporting events such as football, golf,  cricket, horse racing, etc. If you had joined “Belmont Investors Club” through 2007 and 2008 (when no such thing existed I would suspect!! -CK) an investment of £250 would have produced an average profit of £310 per month, rounded to the nearest £10. Following on, an investment of £500 would have produced £620. (Double the Investment=Double the Profit) and so on. Your initial investment would of course have remained intact.”

There then follows a table which shows potential returns.

Now, the con begins! The key ingredient to this “hustle” is GREED! Pure and simple.

The words “Double the Investment=Double the Profit” have planted a seed in the head of the reader who, if getting involved, is more likely to increase his “investment” in the promise of greater returns.

GREED is Belmont Sporting Services’ major weapon. It clouds any logic in any person considering this offer. All due diligence which would normally be de rigueur with any standard Financial Investment Plan is suddenly forgotten. Many folk have sent off cheques and cash without flinching – a kind of naive trust that a complete stranger hiding behind an accommodation address will actually honour his promises!!

The table works on the imagination of the reader – “Imagine if I gave ‘em £5K – I’d be laughing!”

Belmont Sporting Services take a nominal 8% commission charge, which on the surface seems very reasonable. Reading on, alarm bells start to ring.

“All results are as said an average monthly figure over a given time. We could win £50 one week and then £500 the next. Thatis the very nature of sports investing and so we do not guarantee actual figures or results. You must  wait at least 2 months for the figures to work out.”

Why a two month period? This is highly suspicious. After all, any money given to this mob is YOURS and you have the right to ask for it back whenever you want. These people are just making up their own “rules of the game”. Rules which are in their best interests and not yours.

“Our only condition is that you let us place bets on your behalf for just 55 separate betting days… from this we can obtain a minimum commission being the commission made on those bets or the equivalent amount.”

What the hell are they on about?

The key component of the scam is repeated at the end:

“At this stage what you need to do is decide how much money you wish to use as your investment. Looking at the table provided you can see how much you need to invest to produce a certain level of income”.

Again carefully chosen wording to work on that  greed monster in your head.

We are told that Belmont Sporting Services offer a proven track record of results – but I can’t see them!

Other giveaways?

The “membership form” states cheques or postal orders only (now can you see why they have invented the rule that you cannot access your money until two months down the line – they need to clear the cheques).

So how does the scam end?

I admit that the mailshot offer does sound plausible and does bring in customers, otherwise these people would not be doing it!

Like Preferential Sporting Investments of Cheltenham, you will receive, after some time, a letter stating that Belmont Sporting Services have unfortunately had a terrible run of luck of late and lost all of your initial stake money. They have covered themselves by saying within the mailshot.

“All results are as said an average monthly figure over a given time. We could win £50 one week and then £500 the next. That is the very nature of sports investing and so we do not guarantee actual figures or results.”

This follow on letter is a simple lie; the last part of the scam.

How do I know?

Simple – independent customers of Preferential Sporting Investments (whose offer mirrored that of Belmont Sporting Services) all received exactly the same letter over a concerted period of time.

Would you have noticed what’s missing?

There are a number of clues, which should be looked out for, at least to ensure you a scam-free 2009.


This offer mirrors the offer of Preferential Sporting Investments (PSI) of Cheltenham, and PSI was a proven scam. So if you see a Mr Jason Henderson in the future (the autolays scam!) then you know what you should do.

Payment method

Cash and cheque only should sound alarm bells. There is no recourse to getting your money.

No guarantees or refunds offered

These are conspicuous by their absence and again should sound a note of caution.

The 2-month rule

Highly suspicious from my perspective and the reasoning:

“From this we can obtain a minimum commission being the commission made on those bets or the equivalent amount is just gobbledegook. I suspect there is a more sinister reason for this two-month rule.”

No proven track record

Where is the provable track record? Where are the independently verifiable testimonials? They don’t exist!

Bottom line

2009 starts with yet another scam, which will sucker some in… but I hope, at least, that no WRWM readers will succumb to this gubbins.

You be the watchdog

This betting industry has unique characteristics, which mean it attracts scam artists. No official watchdog means EASY PICKINGS!

Only in this betting industry would the practice of odds to betting be acceptable. Where else would the customer be expected to place bets for someone else, forward winnings and shoulder the burden of losses?  – it’s a preposterous business relationship!

In which other industry is selective memory loss encouraged? Large tipping operations, and premium rate phone line adverts suffer greatly from this condition.

Read this excellent exposé on Premium Rate tipping phone line services:

Its a result of one of the most popular betting threads on the Betfair Forums, highlighting the apparent consistent failures of one racing journalist and his tips.

And then there’s the eBook affiliate sellers who simply ride on the crest of a wave selling the latest eBook to their email lists until it’s time for THEIR customers to suffer selective memory loss with all the crap this affiliate has sold them previously!

As I said in my most recent eletter when exposing the potential flaws apparent with this latest website offer at make 2009 the year when you don’t get scammed.

There have been many products sold over the last few years whose websites are now defunct. Why? These products were simply vehicles for the whipped up sales frenzy that happened with one quick affiliate marketing campaign. Get ‘em to BUY, BUY, BUY; wait for a couple of weeks, then start again!

So, YOU BE THE WATCHDOG in 2009. And please do not part with any money until you can garner – TO YOUR SATISFACTION – enough information about the seller and the provability of any claimed results.