Before you part with a penny, make sure you ask a tipster these questions!

You probably receive a unending stream of invitations from kindly souls offering to make you rich beyond your wildest dreams – names such as Paul Howell (he’ll make you £70K a month!) to Richard Carter (“ I will make you a millionaire”) to the latest offerings from Andrew Christie…

But will any of them really make you rich? The mailshots are so alluring, the dreams of life changing amounts of money for, well, little effort on your part. How could you resist? But before you give in to temptation, you might do well to ask yourself the following question:

“Which area of this tipster’s business does he make the most money from – backing the tips or selling you the tips?”

It’s an interesting question. If they make their money selling their tips, then it may cross your mind that said tips aren’t worth backing if the tipster doesn’t even back them.

If the tipster makes his money from betting on the tips, then why, oh why, does he have to sell them? This is something that you must think about before you part with your hard earned cash to some stranger promising the earth.

So why do we all fall for it? Well, the promise of money for no effort is at the forefront of every punter’s mind. You must have read the adverts – but make sure you ask these questions:

• “10 out of 14 winning bets” – YES but when? And what about those selections before this winning run?
• “60% strike rate last week” – YES but at what prices, and what about the week previous to that?”
• “ Another winning week” – YES but when was the last winning week before this one?
• “£4000 profit to advised stakes” – YES but how big are these stakes?

Tipsters never seem to advertise their losers. But if they happen to pick the winner of the big race, then they soon let you know! Derek Thompson’s premium rate adverts are particularly adept at this form of advertising.

And what about the mailshots? Well here’s a case in point. Let’s take a recent example of Andrew Christie:

What’s the deal with Andrew Christie?

Mr Christie’s raised a few eyebrows when he gave his address as ‘London Gatwick Airport’ What? The second element I felt uncomfortable with was the strike rate – a massive 85%! Just 7 losing bets in one year out of the 124 selections made – 105 came 1st at prices ranging from 11/8 to 25/1 – yes 25/1 1st!

The third claim which seemed a bit far fetched read: “Most of our clients have increased there (sic) stakes as they have been winning and most won over £1 million tax free last year”

Mr Christie’s use of guarantees is also off-putting: “Three massive Coups planned for Cheltenham including a massive guaranteed winning double”

Hold on – don’t these horses have to run against other horses AND WIN before your bet is guaranteed. You see the problem here? It’s the same as Paul Howell’s guarantee to make up the difference between the £30K per month he promises on one of his options out of his own pocket if his tips haven’t made you that amount -one reader recently emailed me to say he’s currently owed £60,000!

One of our readers has accepted Andrew Christie’s kind offers of wealth – I hope to hear good news from him soon with an email from his newly acquired villa in the Caribbean!

What about the good guys? Update on Isiris Racing

The only word I can use to describe Isiris over January is “FRUSTRATING”. The £10,000 mark was broken on the 14th December, only for a string of losing bets to decimate the betting bank. As of 2nd February our betting bank lies at £7,634 thanks to a quick succession of winners at 11/1 and 13/2.

It seems as if January was very much a yo-yo month for Isiris. As soon as it looked as if we had a foothold and were starting to build the bank up – BOOM – another set of losing bets.

The great thing though, despite being a way from the £10K marker we hit and not building upon that, is the excellent money management which has really ensured that Isiris has weathered this January storm, a traditionally tricky month – although that must not be used as an excuse. Still, as we’re £3,500 up since October it bodes well for the future, and with the flat season approaching I remain optimistic that Isiris will push us over the £10,000 barrier and upwards. No £70K a month here I’m afraid (and let’s remember they didn’t make these claims!) but a real world tipster trying for his customers.

Expect another update in March when we hope there’ll be better news and a better betting bank.

Finally, let’s have a look at some more established names to see how they progress with the advent of a New Year – do they really perform and are they worth joining?

•    One of the more recognisable tipsters out there, Racing Writer Nick Mordin, author of “Betting for a Living” has currently tipped 42 horses, 35 of which have lost, and to £100 level stakes is showing a loss of £880.
•    Alex Gorrie is currently showing loss of some £1,070 to £100 level stakes
•    Of the 37 bets in the current period that the Sweeney has tipped 29 of these are losers, producing another loss of £1,069, again to £100 level stakes.
•    After an appalling 2005, The Winning Line are currently producing a 20% strike rate with a healthy £5,000 profit to £100 level stakes. February is also looking good with a profit so far of £1,530 to £100 level stakes for the month to date. Winning Line may be worth keeping an eye on..
•    Henry Rix is showing a slight profit for the year to date of £1,500 to £100 level stakes.

I’ll track these 5 plus Isiris and alert you of any real hot tipster who may be worth following in future issues…