We have talked a number of times in P.P.M. about progression staking plans. Some experts deride them. Others, like me, maintain an open mind. I certainly feel that many progression plans are worth deep consideration-just like the one I am now writing about.

I call it The Arithmometer. It's a staking method suitable for those among you who can come up with horses which have sound chances. Preferably, they should be in the 2-1 to 10-1 price range. Don't bother backing horses under 2-1. There are other scales of staking associated with The Arithmometer, but I am concentrating on the one which I feel will apply to the majority of P.P.M. readers.

This is the 10 per cent progression (a table for which you will see accompanying this article). Now, I happen to believe that The Arithmometer is one of the very best progression staking plans around, which is the reason I'm presenting it for your perusal in P.P.M. The beauty of it is that it's perfectly balanced. You will find that a great many progression staking plans lack balance.

A plan that calls for an increase of one unit after each loser and a decrease of a certain number of units after a win can be dangerous. Under this plan, the progression, using a \$2 unit, would be 2, 4, 6, 8, 10, etc., until a winner comes along. If the winner hit at the fifth bet at 3-1, the next bet would be \$4, which is arrived at by dropping back one staking point for point in the odds. After that a winner, say, at 4-1 would take you back to the starting point again.

This is a popular form of progression/regression betting, but it has a flaw. The scale is out of balance. For example, after the first loser the play is increased 100 per cent (from \$2 to \$4). The third bet is 50 per cent greater, the fourth 33.3 per cent over the third, the fifth 25 per cent, the sixth 20 per cent and so on.

In contrast, The Arithmometer provides you with the balance that's needed. Each investment is in perfect harmony with the one before it, and after it.

The 10 per cent progression play should be tailor-made for most punters.

By referring to the \$5 table on the 10 per cent scale, it will be seen that the amount shown in the 'Bet' column is arrived at from the amount shown in the 'next total' column on the line above (the amount being rounded to the nearest dollar).

This 'next total' is always determined by adding 10 per cent to the amount shown on the line above. The actual amount of these 10 per cent additions is shown in the 'increase' column.

So, by starting with a \$5 beginning point, we determine the amount of the following bet by adding 10 per cent, or 50 cents, which is shown in the 'increase' column, giving us a total of \$5.50 in the ,next total' column. (We consider that all amounts of 50 cents and over should be considered as a full dollar). The next bet, then, is \$6.

To find the amount of the next bet, we add 10 per cent to the last amount in the ,next total' column (\$5.50 in this instance), which makes a 55 cents increase, for a total of \$6.05. The play, then, for the third bet is the same as the second.

The fourth play is \$7, because the next total in the line above is \$6.66. This was arrived at by increasing the preceding total of \$6.05 by 10 per cent or 61 cents. This same principle applies all the way up the scale.

The principle of the regression aspect of the method is that a winner at any one of the minimum prices shown in the first column of the Regression Table will permit you to drop back the number of bets shown in the third column, and still break even no matter how high up the scale you might be.

For instance, if the progression has reached the 10th investment of \$12 and you strike a winner paying \$3.50 (for 50 cents)-the minimum price permitting a regression of 9 points-you would be returning to the first progression on the scale. Your total return from this bet would be \$84, compared to the \$81 of the total 10 bets. Thus your profit is \$3. But had the above horse paid \$3.60, you would have had the same regression but ended up with \$4.50 profit.

But now-let's assume that horse paid \$5. This would be sufficient to drop you back 21 plays if necessary, but since we cannot drop back further than the start of the scale, it answers the same purpose at the shorter prices and provides us with a profit of \$39.

In losing sequences, you use the scale of progression and following any winner you simply check the scale of regression to determine what your next bet will be. Where a winner pays less than the minimum price shown on the scale (90c) it is ignored, except where it is immediately followed by another winner on the next selection. In this case, the price of the first winner-after 50 centsmay be added to the next winner's price if desired.

Let's look at an example play, using \$1 stakes on the 10 per cent scale:

In this example, using Graeme Kelly of The Australian’s tips, you did not have to proceed beyond a one unit bet.

The profit on the day was \$12.60.

Now let's look at another less successful tipster on that day:

The totals here show an outlay on the eight bets of 12 units (\$12) for a return of \$24.20, a profit of \$12.20. A dividend of \$12.20 is equivalent to going back 31 steps, so you merely go back to the start of the scale and begin with a new series.

If the 8th bet had not been successful, you would have started the following meeting with a fourth \$2 bet. If this had lost, another \$2 bet would have followed. If this had lost, you would have then bet \$3. Had this been successful and paid, say, \$4 (\$2 for 50 cents) you would have regressed 3 steps on the scale-in this case, back to Play No. 8 at \$2. Your situation then would have been: Total Stake \$19, Total Return \$12, Total loss to date \$7. However, a winner at just 3-1 would put you a touch ahead with your next bet.

Here are the two scales to follow-the first is the actual regression scale, showing the dividends (for 50 cents) needed and the number of steps to drop back. The second is the actual stake progression scale for \$1 and \$5 bets.

By Statsman

PRACTICAL PUNTING - NOVEMBER 1987