Back on June 15, Statsman hero of so many great system creations over the last 20 years - achieved what many say is the impossible dream.

In his 00555 telephone selections, which accompany the Jon Hudson Factor tips, Statsman correctly picked the four winners for his special Yankee bet.

This service has been operating for a long time now - four years in all - and many times Statsman nabbed three winners from the four selections. But on June 15, for the first time, he landed the lot.

A Yankee bet, for those who don't know, is a combination of four selections into 6 doubles, 4 trebles and one four-horse accumulator (that is, all-up after each winner).

It IS a tough bet to land - but when you do the rewards are sweet. In Statsman's case, for an outlay of only $11 (a bet of $1 unit per double, treble and accumulator) the total return, using NSW TAB divvies, was a whopping $2427.70!

Had you been betting in $5 amounts the return would have been a colossal $12,138.50 for a $55 bet.

Now, some of you may say this was a flash in the plan. The stats from Statsman's four years of Yankee bet selections tell another story, though.

They show that between July, 1992 and June 15, 1996, the total bet was $2029. The return was $6515 for a clear profit of $4486, or 221 per cent on turnover.

Frankly, I doubt there is any other tipster or service that could show such massive profits after four straight years of on-the-record selections.

What it clearly shows is that for a small punter with dedication and tenacity, the Yankee bet can be a real winner. It gives him a fighting chance of landing a windfall win, like the one Statsman grabbed, as well as the chance of landing a succession of doubles and trebles throughout the year.

The outlay is ridiculously small at only $11. The drawback is that if you are betting at different tracks with your selections you have to collect and then reinvest.

A nuisance, sure, but if it all pays off, so what? You are reinvesting all the time with any form of betting.

My colleague Brian Blackwell tells me he spoke many years ago with a leading UK bookmaker, who revealed that Yankee bets were the one form of betting on which he lost money every year.

The bookie put it down to the fact that the Yankees gave the punter a chance of recouping all losses with one successful day. It's not often that you can say that about other forms of betting on horse-racing.

This bookmaker said he loathed regular Yankee bettors and admitted that if they continued to win money from him he just told them to find another bookmaker.

In my own experience, I know of several punters who have landed huge returns from Yankee betting. My colleague The Optimist is one.

Another is a Sydney man who chooses four horses twice a week (Wednesdays and Saturdays) and does nothing else except couple them in Yankee bets.

He has been betting seriously for the last 18 months and tells me he is well ahead. And he has yet to land all four winners. Most of his profits have come from landing three winners quite a few times, thus giving him excellent profits on the doubles and a treble.

This man does not try to land outrageous winners. He prefers his selections to be in the 2/1 to 6/1 price range, though if he can nab a winner at longer odds he will gladly accept it.

His best three winners in one Yankee were at 4/1, 9/2 and 8/1. This treble returned him odds of more than 246/1 and with his usual $10 bet that meant $2470 in his kick - plus the three doubles from the same winners.

Let me put the situation to you this way: If you bet a Yankee once a week for a year that would be an outlay, for $1 units, of $572.

One decent set of three winners will return that amount to you, maybe a bit under, maybe a bit over. But once you've done that, the rest of the year can be cream!

How do you pick your own Yankee bet selections? Statsman's advice is not to seek too much longshot action. He tries to restrict himself to good, in-form horses who are not too short in the betting, but not too long, either. He is an avowed systems man, and sometimes will use selections from systems he has developed.

His winners for his successful Yankee strike on June 15 were Cuadrillo, Royal Rubiton, Dancing Sun and Big Rhumba.

The Yankee eventually relied on Dancing Sun to land the entire side of bacon. This one was sent out 2/1 favourite and led throughout for an easy win.

What has to be remembered about the Yankee approach is that you are not always going to be 100 per cent successful. In fact, you might have to wait a long time to actually hit four winners. But it's those days when you hit a good double, or when you land three of the four winners that provide you with enough returns to keep the pot bubbling - and usually keep you ahead of the ledger.

One good treble can pay for a lot of $11 Yankee bets. A treble of three 5/1 shots will return you $216. That treble alone is enough to account for almost 20 weeks of Yankee betting. And don't forget those three winners at 5/1 would also return you three doubles, each paying $36, another $108, which would cover a further 10 weeks of action.

So with one strike of three 5/1 winners, you have garnered enough money to carry you through 30 weeks of betting!

You can see from this example the potential power of the Yankee in the hands of a sound selector.

Your only problem is to have the patience to reinvest the winnings. It's a case of distributing the returns to all the other selections. Not too hard. And if you bet in NSW, and confine your picks to the same meeting, you can simply avoid all that reinvesting by taking a TAB parlay ticket for the four selections.

The Yankee, then, is for the small punter who really wants some action and fun, and the chance of spectacular profits.

It may not appeal to the more cautious among you, but then again the bet only calls for an outlay of $11, so it's not as if you are entering high-risk financial territory.

At one bet a week, the most you can lose in a year is $572, and you would only lose this much if you didn't strike a double at least once in that year!

Just have a look again at Statsman's independently-checked performance. He staked $2029 and walked off with a profit of $4486 for just $1 unit outlays.

The profits are amazing and few could equal them. But such Yankee success is available for all. It's there for the taking.

Next month, I'll take you over the Yankee 'perm' bet where you pick six selections and then bet them in three sets of Yankees. This bold staking approach was formulated many years ago but remains a highly potent way to maximise a successful set of selections.

Click here to read Part 2.

Special report by Damian Whitchurch