Last month I went on a bit of a nostalgia trip in regards to the famous/infamous Royal Routine system, which basically needs the selections of as many newspaper tipsters as possible for it to be successful.

The broad aim of the system is to win $x per race but rather than attempt to win that sum on one tipster the premise of the system was to spread the risk over a number of tipsters. In the long term the objectives of a tipster going poorly were spread amongst those going well and it was assumed that with judicious adjustments all objectives would eventually be cleared.

Although I discussed the methodology involved I did not discuss the publication’s method of selecting bets. The recommended method of selection is detailed covering two types of selections: “One method is to use  the first selection of the tipster regardless of whether it is $1.30 or $11.00. This method is not recommended . . . during a losing run losses can amount at an alarming rate when a few hotpots are beaten.

“The method recommended is to back the first selection that is quoted/received at $4.00 (3/1) or better. With this method you will not back as many winners but over a period of time the actual outlay of money is not as great.

“Again the individuality and aggressiveness of each punter decrees which path they will personally follow but, yes, the drama attached to losing four or five races where the favourites are around 6/4 or less will drain you . . . so think about it now.”

As we fast forward to 2008 we should wonder how we can adapt this system to generate some good old fashioned profits and as I think about it all I am of the opinion most of the original plan still holds true – as long as you are happy to use the public tipsters as your guide.

When the system first originated, if you were a TAB bettor you had to put your bets on for Race 2 before Race 1 and bets for Race 3 had to be on before Race 2 and so on!! Yes, young readers will find this quite a revelation.

This requirement prompted the authors to recommend staggering the operation into two sections where part one involved Races 1-3, 5-7, 9 and the second part involved the even number races and this is when yours truly kind of lost it with all the sheets of paper; the method needed 32 pages and I remember grabbing my box of work and deftly shoving it into the old woodstove we used. I had had enough!

These days we have two options: one, we can bet right up to the starting time of the race/s, which then gives us 35 or so minutes to make all calculations or we can put all bets on at once for the day. The first option is the worst of the two to a degree but there is a way around it (which I will explain later) which is just fine, as I see it, but for now let me explain.

If you go by obtaining a minimum of 3/1 just before the jump, what are you going to do if the price hovers around 3/1 and could go either way and you actually need to back the tipsters’ second pick with three minutes to go – but as they line up the A selection becomes the selection.

Now you all know what is going to happen, don’t you! Yes, eventually the non-bet B selection wins at 12/1 and you would have made a motza but instead lost on the race. No punter needs that sort of drama on raceday where numerous calculations need to be made quickly, not to mention worrying about the punter ahead of you in the queue who does not even know the scratchings. You need something quite a bit more stable than that.

The second option is to calculate all selections for the day shortly after scratchings and put your bets on in ONE go with one of the Internet sites available or physically stroll down to the TAB. (If you are a TAB man can I suggest you have a box full of TAB cards at home!)

However the issue of what price line should be used will rear its head. Do you use the paper price or the radio price or is there a better way? Using the paper price or the radio price will in the long term average out to about the same so if you decide on one stick to it.

With the paper prices you have the problem of scratchings that will affect the prices, so you need to make a decision with that in mind. What do you do if the favourite is scratched? Obviously ALL the prices of other runners will be affected but overall long-term if you used the exact paper price I suspect there will be a bit of overs and a bit of unders and the balance will be about the same.

There is one way which covers all the options in the long term where you do not need to worry about radio prices or newspaper prices and that is what I called Assumed Prices.

Over many years of studying newspaper tipsters selections, and through the reading of studies done by others, I have come to the conclusion that the best tipsters will select about 25 per cent winners if forced to select in every race on every program all year long.

In percentage terms this equates to 3/1; however, note I stated “best tipsters” and if we average them out I would suggest 20 per cent is closer to the norm, which is the equivalent of 4/1.

If we make the quite valid conclusion that all tipsters would lose on flat stakes on average then you would be sensible in suggesting that overall we should ask for a better price than 4/1 for each tipster.

On this basis I am suggesting the figure 5/1 and that is the Assumed Price I would use for all tipsters, unless you had very, very strong reasons to suggest otherwise for some tipsters. This figure can be the price we will divide by all the time when calculating our bet size.

Naturally, there will be many times when we will not receive 5/1 about their winners but eventually we will receive 5/1 or longer and the ledgers will be cleared. A winner at longer than 5/1 is a bonus and will at times have us over-reaching our targets with dramatic success, especially if quite a few tipsters select the same horse.

If we are seeking $30 for a tipster and divide by five the bet size will be $6; however, if the winner is 3/1 we only win $15 of the sought $30. All that needs to be done is to subtract $15 from $30 and add your next race objective to that figure and again divide by five and onwards we march.

This is the approach I would use if sitting at home or at the local as I would have heaps of time to make adjustments and it does not really matter what prices are in the paper or have been spouted  by the radio experts.

There is, however, the punter who wants to go to the football or cricket  or is under starters order from “She Who Must Be Obeyed” to give her a break on a Saturday and he needs to consider this approach, otherwise the divorce court will cost him a lot more than a missed program.

Firstly, stick to the 5/1 Assumed Price approach. Secondly, create eight sheets for each tipster you use. If using 10 tipsters you will need 80 sheets. Holy Batman, Roman! What do you think I am?

Well, I think you are a punter who wants to make it easy for yourself and keep your family happy. What you will be required to do is just simply bet from week to week rather than race to race; thus for Tipster 1-10, sheet 1 will usually be Race 1, sheet 2 will usually be Race 2 and so on which means at the finish of the meeting you have all week to calculate the bet size for all coming selections the following Saturday.

If you were at the TAB or in front of a screen you would still be doing the same number of calculations (X tipsters times Y races). In instances where there are nine or 10 races just drop a couple of the races.

The author of this system mentioned the important issue of “Capital Requirements” which he considered of great importance and his stance was “a safe bank would be $200 for every $0.10 added each race for profit”.

In percentage terms this equates to 1/2,000 and after years of tinkering with staking plans I also believe this ratio is quite safe. Sadly, over the years, Target Betting, which the “Royal Routine System” is all about, has received far too much bad press simply because of the greed factor of the operators.

How confident would you be going to the track with $2,000 in your pocket and attempting to win $20 per race (1 per cent) compared to attempting to win $1 per race. If you have any doubt try some calculations based on losing 16 bets in a row and all selections are at 2/1.

Mentally you would be struggling at $20 per race objective past a certain point, whereas the more conservative 1/2,000 target bettor would still be feeling fairly confident even after 16 losers.

On the basis of 1/2,000, if you were using 10 tipsters you would need a bank of $2,000 and these days that is not a huge amount if you and a few friends down at your local would like a bit of fun to start with and I suspect some profit as well.

What sort of profits await you ask? Simply it is 50 meetings times eight races times $1 per race multiplies to $400 which is an increase on your bank of 20 per cent. In Year 2, $2,400 becomes $2,880, in Year 3 becomes . . . I will let you work out the rest.

By writing this duet of articles about the Royal Routine System I hope I have provided you with some ideas on how the use of the newspapers’ tipsters might be a way for you to earn a few dollars a week from the punt.

I will most certainly refute the scandalous claims from the plan’s originators that a $20 bank could be turned into $100,000 in five years; however, if you extrapolate my figures above for Years 3 to 5 the chances of profit are genuinely there if you are prepared to defy the system punters’ biggest problem of sticking with the original plan.
I leave it to you to decide and as always wish you the best in your punting.

Click here to read Part 1.

By Roman Kozlovski