Latest Cases - July 2015

In the Dock - Early Bird Naps...

2nd July 2015

Good afternoon, friends,

In this issue of Punters’ Verdict….

  • First impressions….
  • The Early Bird Naps service in action….
  • Got a question for the Judge?
  • How the Early Bird Naps trial panned out….
  • The bottom-line verdict….

First impressions….

Head to the Early Bird Naps home page – which has recently undergone something of a re-design job – and you’ll be welcomed with a very peculiar and confusing statement that reads….

‘Welcome to Early Bird Naps, the UK’s ONLY early morning horse racing tips service. What sets us apart from every other tipping service[s] is that our clients will receive, via email, our daily tip around 10am....’

I don’t know about you but I’m wondering where these guys at Early Bird Naps have been hiding out for the last 15 years?

The ONLY early morning horse racing service in the UK? Really?

What about the other 8,728,906,411 UK-based horse race tipping services out there who send out their selections each morning?

I might let it pass if the Early Bird Naps selections were sent out at 4.00am. That would be unique – something you could rightfully use to distinguish your service from all the rest….

But 10.00am? Come on, boys. For guys like me, real early-birds who get up at 4.30am every morning, 10.00am is pretty much early afternoon. At 10.00am I’m waiting for the chippy to open so I can get my lunch.

I don’t know what to make of it. It’s like the guys who produced the website had to say something to make their service seem unique – but just couldn’t think of anything unique to say and ended up trying to present something commonplace as though it were unique. Opportunity missed I think.

So too with the results on the front page – results taken from the week commencing March 7th. Only 4 months old then….

This could be an oversight. A detail that has been overlooked. But it creates an impression doesn’t it? Like me you’re straight-away thinking that they haven’t had any winners or results to shout about over the last 16 weeks – otherwise they’d have more recent results on display?

At least the overall results are up to date….

Oh…. actually…. no they aren’t. They haven’t been updated since March 14th. Someone is asleep at the wheel….

First impressions count. Don’t they? And Early Bird Naps has missed a trick in not creating the best possible impressions first up.

They do have a paid service. It might only cost £5.00 per month to join. But even at that low subscription rate potential customers want to know that they are going to be looked after and all the expected service features attended to. Maybe you have to pay to get hold of current results?

To be honest. I’m surprised at the oversights with regard to results. Because the service is actually very well-run in terms of its day-to-day operation.

That’s very much the impression I got and I should know. I trialed the Early Bird Naps free tips from 24th April to 5th June – and I couldn’t really fault the execution of the service….

The Early Bird Naps service in action….

The daily tips didn’t ALWAYS arrive before 10.00am. Some did. Some arrived the night before. But others were as late as midday.

It’s not a big deal to me. I’m sat at this desk all day from dawn to dusk. I’ll be here as and when the selections arrive. But normal people with normal jobs (people who don’t live in a psychiatric facility) often need to know when selections are arriving. They rely on punctuality.

It’s a detail. And details matter. Not just where Early Bird Naps are concerned. But for all such services.

If you’re going to say you get the tips out for 10.00am then they need to be in the client’s email box before 10.00am. Otherwise what does it say about the promises you make? What does it say about your service? Maybe it’s only the paid service tips that get to you by 10.00am?

Over the course of my trial of the Early Bird Naps free selections I saw 109 selections. You just get the daily tips. There’s no explanation as to why a specific horse has been selected. It’s a case of meeting/race time/horse/price/best price bookie…. Job done.

I have no issue with that. That’s how most such services roll. But if you’re looking for evidence of thought or an insight into method then look elsewhere.

Where there was no advice to the contrary I took the selections as win-only bets. Where an each-way bet was advised I recorded the results as though I’d bet 1 point each-way. When specific bet-types were recommended – there were instances of forecasts and multiples – I bet those to a point.

Sometimes the service would highlight specific bookies offering cash-back deals for 2nd-place finishes and suchlike. I didn’t factor those details into my results.

The Judge takes questions….

In a new addition to the Punters’ Verdict service the Judge is now taking questions…. and answering the best of them via this column every Thursday….

  • Want the definitive answer to a sports-betting-related query?
  • Want to pick the big man’s brains?
  • Want his opinion on a sporting issue close to your heart?
  • Or do you just want his take on how to make a first-class margarita?

Fire away….

How the Early Bird Naps trial panned out….

Here’s how thing broke down….

  • 109 selections produced 36 wining bets – in other words a third of the advised selections produced a betting profit. That’s not bad going.
  • Profits ran to 18 points to advised prices and 12.6 points if you were betting each-way. Not bad. Winning trials are not common. Advised prices are not always achievable. They might be there with one or two bookies when the selections are distributed – but they can soon disappear. I would suggest that overall profits in reality would probably fall somewhere between the advised and SP figures. ROI would have fallen somewhere in the band between 11% and 16% - depending on prices achieved.
  • The average advised price of selections weighed in a shade short of 4/1. The average SP of selections was just a fraction short of 7/2. Just 8 of the selections were advised at prices in excess of 7/1. 65 of the service selections were sent off race favourite.

There was one aspect of the service which I didn’t warm too at all. Three times during the period of my trial a selection was put up as a MAX BET selection and the advice was to bet it to the tune of 10 points – 10 times the ordinary stake.

I really don’t like this kind of ‘special’ situation. I always find myself wondering why the service operator is 10 times more confident about this particular selection.

And, if indeed he is, why is he giving me tips the rest of the time that he’s 10 times less confident of? Surely I would be better off – and so would his service – if he just stuck to giving out the occasional MAX BET selections he is so very confident about?

It’s probably a personal thing. I might accept it from a service I’ve been using for years and which I know inside out. But in my experience most tipping services use/abuse the ‘special’ situation in order to try and recoup accumulated losses with a one-off hit. It’s often a sign of desperation – a thinly disguised attempt to wipe out a week or two of poor results with one swipe.

Whatever the motives of Early Bird Naps (and there may well have been no underhand motive whatsoever) it didn’t work out. All 3 Max Bet selections got beaten – exacerbating losses rather than eradicating them….

At least that would have been the case had I recorded those MAX BET stakes in the overall results.

As it happens I didn’t. I like to record results to level stakes. It gives a fairer impression and reflects the way most people actually bet. I would have done the same thing had the MAX BET selections won – because I wouldn’t want to be reporting profits to my readership that depended on lucky punts of desperation….

The bottom-line verdict….

There are a few details I’d clean up if the Early Bird Naps service were my own. And I don’t really care for what seem like random MAX BET selections. But overall there is a lot to like about the service – not least that they have proven themselves capable of making a decent profit over a protracted trial period.

As you know I never claim to do anything more than take a snapshot of a service and to report the results I experience and my observations as honestly as possible….

I don’t claim to be the final word. Or even the best judge. That accolade falls to you. Nobody can judge what service is right for you or fits your particular needs better than you can. That’s why I always urge you to take a look at a service yourself – see how you find it and come to your own conclusions.

It’s easy enough to do with the Early Bird Naps service. Unlike many of their competitors they are prepared to show what they can do with no money up-front. They offer a two-week free trial which you can sign up for here…..

Maybe that willingness to provide an opportunity to take a FREE no-strings look at their service and its performance is what distinguishes Early Bird Naps from so many other players in the market?

Maybe that’s what they should be highlighting in their front-page welcome copy? I reckon that’s what I’d be doing if I were them….

I’ll be back with the Verdict next week.

The Judge

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