# Using betting surges to find value

With any type of sports betting, there are various factors behind why certain matches and individuals are priced up at certain odds. This is a combination of professional odds compilers doing their business, betting firms trying to balance their books and to hedge and the betting public driving these prices themselves by placing action all over the country.

All these factors are interlinked of course but what this means is that we can use the bell curve to highlight one very important facet of gamblers…..their average knowledge base. Once you can calculate what their average knowledge base is then you can plot a strategy to combat that average level of knowledge.

What this is all leading to of course is that the vast majority of punters are following similar principles and ideas when it comes to placing bets. So this can mean that they are coming to exactly the same conclusions as everyone else. This now takes me onto the subject of betting surges and steamers and drifters.

When you watch a horse shorten dramatically in the betting from say 8.00 to 2.50 then this is a clear indication that some serious money is being placed on this horse by whatever source. What this can mean is that the betting public sees this and then starts to see “conspiracy theories” behind every corner and suddenly this is a clear indication that someone must know something.

So suddenly we have a stampede and even though the original price of this horse may have been too long at 8.00, the surge of betting money has now taken this price to a level that is far too short. Somewhere amongst all of this information and data regarding this horse race is the theoretically optimal price for each horse based on its probability of winning.

Now it isn’t actually possible to calculate a correct theoretically optimal price so the professional odds compilers do a very good job of producing a very good estimate. These are the tissue prices that the rest of the betting world follows to a certain extent. But the prices that we see at the start of an event do not reflect the actual true theoretical prices of that event actually happening.

So when the betting public latch onto a certain horse and it starts to plunge in price then it can often attain a very substantial momentum that can be difficult to stop. It will of course eventually stall as the betting public will come to view the horse as now being either fair odds or poor value. In many cases the momentum has swung too far and the price is now too low and worth opposing on the betting exchanges.

What you are effectively doing is now laying a horse at below its current theoretical price. Even though we don’t know what that theoretical price is, we can still use the professionalism of the odds compilers and the psychology of the market to base our judgement on the odds now being too short and bet accordingly.