Bill Benter – From The Gambler To The Creator Of The Most Profitable Betting Algorithm

Home » Bill Benter – From The Gambler To The Creator Of The Most Profitable Betting Algorithm
August 3, 2022
15 minutes

In 2018, thanks to the world found out the story of bill benta. By this time, he had alady managed to earn millions of dollars, putting on horse racing. There is not a series of accidents at all behind the huge number, but the result of fruitful work. Bill benter proved that the exact calculation is always better blind luck.

Benter namesbel
date of birth 1957
place of birth pittsburgh, pennsylvania, usa

Early years

Most of the childhood bill benter passed in pittsburgh. Already in elementary school he began to manifest mathematical abilities – the future millionaire solved the equation much faster than classmates. When bill entered the university, parents provided him with enough freedom. Student during the holidays could go on a trip to get to egypt.

In 1977, bill received a university degree in physics. The young man refused the following career as a scientist to avoid routine and not work from 9 am to 5 pm. He found applied skills in las vegas. Some time, the young man worked in 7-eleven for $ 7 per hour. Most of the salary he spent on casino.

Botany – the best players

Bill understood that due to the counting of cards would be able to get an advantage over the croupier. The book "beat the dealer" from edward torp helped the newcomer to improve skills – at that time the work of the american scientist enjoyed great popularity. Purchase follower were slightly highlighted in the crowd – they had a smart appearance, they were always sober and often spoke about probability theory.

In good days, bill earned up to 40 dollars. Thanks to blackjack, he found new friends. Benter continued to work in his free time. Once he even tried to get a night cleaner to the local mcdonald’s. To take up the mop, he did not have – friends introduced to alan woods, when australian only arrived in las vegas.

Bill benter was more like a university professor and not a professional card player

Alan woods had a team of players. The discarded money in the overall budget and always divided the winnings to reduce the risks for each member. In the 1980s, thanks to the entry into the organized group, bill income increased to $ 80,000 per year.

Casino against bills

The group of players has achieved a certain success – together with like-minded benter acquired a large house. Free from work time the brotherhood from the university. In casino alan woods forbade drinking alcohol, so the players missed several bottles of beer at home, telling about all curious cases.

Over time, the situation has grunted. Among professional players, rumors went: the guards began to carefully follow the visitors and with the slightest suspicions for counting cards cald not only drive out of. Sometimes due to major winnings, employees conducted interrogations. In rare cases, everything came to extremes – the bouncer was waiting for the player in a dark alley.

Similar history occurred with a benter. Bill did rates in maxim casino, when a strong guy approached him and asked to go with him. His force was set up in a chair and demanded to present documents. Bill first resisted, but under pressure still took out a wallet.

In 1984, a group of private detectives griffin investigations included benter and its accomplices in griffin book – black player book.

At the foot of "everest"

Alan woods understood that no casino would now open the doors before him and his team. They schold have changed not only the scope of activity, but also a place of residence. Attention attracted hong kong – here was one of the largest jockey clubs. In 1884, the british tip created his own paradise in a subtropical colony, which eventually received a state monopoly on gambling.

Every year from september to july two hippodrome – happy valley and sha tin – clogged to the limit during racing. Then there was only 5.5 million people in hong kong, but at the same time the turnover of rates on the raceded the united states – in the 90s total bet reached 10 billion per year.

Duet intended to conquer hong kong with a starting capital of $ 150 thousand. – $ 373 thousand. In our time. Relying on mathematical abilities, partners have begun to develop the algorithm for determining winners in races.

Many veterans players would call böll beter madman. In the jumps too many variables – jockeys are not insured against falls, and any purebred trough may be in the "bad mood". Because of this, the american sports browser roger kran once compared his jumps with an "animated roulette".

"If you bet on horses, you will lose," – warwick bartlett, head of global betting & gaming consultants.

Bill benter could easily go making money into another sphere – no broker will respond to the stock market to cooperate with such an insightful person. He also preferred jumps at all because it was difficult, but because it was considered impossible. In hong kong, all rates took a tote, which held the commission in 17%. Casino did not have such a big advantage in card games.

While alan scared all books about jumps, benter preferenes scientfic. At the university of nevada, he found an article "search for positive profits on the highway: a polynomial logity model of a handicap in horsepower races". The name immediately pushed betender to reading. To sort out all the subtleties, he had to study scientific work twice.

According to the horse depends on the factors that can be translated into numbers to calculate the likeliahood. The accuracy of the results affects the number of variables – the more different indicators are taken into account, the higher the chance to determine the winner.

While the benter learned to develop software, alan woods went to hong kong to collect statistics. He sent his colleague a stack of annals of the results of thousands of races. To transfer data to digital species i had to hire two stenograms – they needed 9 monhs.

In september 1985, bill benter flew to hong kong together with three ibm computers. Already then the developing financial center hit its scale. The densely populated city with high skyscrapers managed to inspire ridley scott to create its own anti-astope megalopolis in the cult tape "running on the blade".

Through thorn

Benter and woods removed a tiny apartment in a dilapidated high-rise building with thin walls. Every night, the duet enjoyed the cries of neighbors in the lobby. In one of the old writing desk, littered with newspapers about racing. Players practically did not leave their "office", and if the nearest mcdonalds.

Benter struggle wanted to defeat a statistical phenomenon called "player ripping".

Racing passed twice a week. During arrival, bill was always sitting at the computer, and woods studied the features of hong kong hippodrols. Throughout the year, the program issued strange results, so scientists had to constantly refine the algorithm. Even wine the bet was the winning, none of them rejoiced. In gambling entertainment only ignorant need applause.

According to the pinciple of ruin, even with equal chances due to a limited budget, a person will lose a bookmaker – a gain of the winnings ends, and the series of losses can become fatal. Kelly strategy came to the optimal interest rate depending on the likelihood of the player’s event and budget.

Benter noticed some similarity between this method and its algorithm. Both principles offer the creation of a private grid of coefficients that must be more accurate than quotes of bookmakers. While everyone else consider the chances of the horse to win 4 to 1, the benter can estimate the likelihood as 3 to 1. A slight advantage for frequenter can turn into a huge profit on a long distance.

In the summer of 1986, the amount of losses amounted to $ 120 thousand. – natarns left $ 30 thousand.

Step back

Duet needed more money to continue working on the algorithm. Benter returned to las vegas to find an investor, but his attempts remained in vain. Woods went to make money on gambling in south korea. In september 1986, partners met in hong kong to discuss further cooperation. At this point, alan managed to collect more money, so he wanted to revise the conditions of the partnership.

Alan woods always trid to get a big deal in partnership

Woods insisted on increasing his share. Australian wanted to pick up 90%, to which a benter could not agree – companions had to part. Bill was so disappointed in a former friend, which added a code in the program, because of which the algorithm will stop working after the specified date.

Benter’s friends from las vegas did not want to give money to jumps, but the were ready to put on it in blackjack. Thanks to the regutation, he managed to return to counting cards. 2 years bill headed the team of professional players. When he has accumulated a few hundred thousand dollars, he immediately bought a ticket to hong kong.

Alan woods did not leave anywhere – he hired mathematicians and programmers who were modified by benter code. He managed to achieve some success, from the old office a former partner moved to a luxury penthouse.

Race without finish

The algorithm was not perfect, so benter had to redeem him again. The number of factors gradually increased – the formulas added the parameters of the wind, the number of days for the rest of the horse, the air temperature, and so on.

In the first year after returning to hong kong, bender’s income amounted to $ 600 thousand.

The next season was slightly unprofitable, but bill had enough funds to stay in the "race". He hired one assistant who worked with him for many years. Benter also regularly connected to the work of journalists, professional players, analysts, programrs and mathematicians. The amount of information being processed. The rates were so much that bill had to hire english-speaking filipinos, who in the midst of the season were up to eight bet per minute.

A significant breakthrough occurred after the benter included the most obvious factor – the coefficients of bookmakers. Previously did not use them because they knew that quotes would always be slightly understated. However, the innovation has become only the starting point. Having a finished net of coeficients from the bookmaker, it was easier to calculate the exact probability of outome.

In the 1990/91 season, betender incomes $ 3 million.

From the black list to the vip person

Success allowed bentera next season to remove the office in heppi valley – the comfortable area of ​​the city, where the susinutedied hippodrome is located. Once there was a call from the representative of jockey club. Benter immediately remembered the case in las vegas, but instead heard:

"You are one of our best customers. What can we do to help you?"- asked the club manager.

Tote, unlike casino, it is not necessary that all the players constantly lose. Instead, he is interested in increasing the volume of rates, since earnings are 17% of the win. Bentera managed to agree in his office installed terminal for rates. Exclusion of the operator from the equation increased the rate of betting at times. However, benter went even further – he connected the computer to the terminal and fully automated the rates.

In the 1994/95 season, bill has achieved a new mark – $ 10 million.

Benter and woods could not always stay in the shadows, so the attracted the attention of the community. Between their teams constantly rushed bob moore – a manic new zealander, who was engaged in video analysis of races. He watched the horses who came down from the distance, but had potentially high chances to finish the first.

Woods regularly enjoyed in the neptune ii bar, where it was possible to catch a lot of other successful businessmen with young beauties. Benter also visited such institutions, but he behaved restrained the rest. American gave preference to conversation, not drinking.

Benter and woods often crossed, but did not speak for 10 years.

Somewhere above the clouds

1997 promised to be not the most favorable. The borders of hong kong gathered the chinese army, which subtly hinting with the brity government about the need to return the island. Local residents began to be afraid of the end of free capitalism, even though dan xiaoping promised to preserve all established traditions for the next 50 years.

Benter collided with other problems. A month before the transfer of the island, his team won one of the largest jackpots triple trio – for victory it is nessary to guess three winners in different races in any order. Due to the high accuracy of the algorithm, total income for this season has already exceeded $ 50 million.

Jockey club loved to exhibit the winners of triple trio point. The story of the night is awake, which earned millions and changed his life, could be the best advertisement. If other players find out that most of the money from their rates got a computer, they will stop entering. Nobody wanted to show bill bender on tv.

Then there was no law that prohibited the syndicate to use computer equipment. However, the jockey club had to take action. At first, bill took the terminal for rates, and later blocked the telephone line. Similar measures taken against woods.

Army runners against tax

Former bentener partner did not want to give up. He regularly sent several women on the racetrack – in their hands they had bags stuffed with money. Bender went to another way. He hired several dozen people who did rates on his forecasts in different parts of hong kong.

Syndicates failed to avoid attention when bob moore began to brag about its success in the rates. Even more about algorithmic bets spoke after his death from overdose. The local authorities were time to undertake something.

According to the law of winnings from rates are not taxed. However, the activities of the organized group of players can be equated to the corporation. If the tax service decides to take the tax by the back number, then the history of benth and woods will come an end. First, the inspectors came to alan. Instead of providing a list of investors, australian escaped to the philippines.

Bentera managed to go to the shadow and not to attract special attention. At the turn of the millennium, he managed an extensive grid of the runners. Also did not stop working on the algorithm. By the 2000th computer handled 120 factors on one horse to estimate the likeliahood of victory.

Christmas party in 2000 for all employees who worked on benter algorithm

Poltergeist millionaire

In 2001, bill benter could not resist and decided to play in large. Attention was again attracted by the ill-fated triple trio, the jackpot of which was $ 16 million. Benter spent more than $ 200 thousand., to put on one of 51 381 possible combinations.

When bobo duck, mascot treasure and frat rat finished first, the benter was not ready to appear before the public and refused to take a prize – about the mysterious winner began to go legends. According to one of the versions, he during the viewing of the last arrival could not stand the voltage and died of shock.

A little later, bill benter wrote a letter to jockey club. He spoke about his intentions, but his content was hidden from the public. When sending a request, the inquisite detectives received the following manual response:

"We cannot disclose or comment on specific customers, for confidential reasons".

According to the rules of the jockey club, if no one takes a win, money goes to donations. Thanks to the bet benter, there were many charitable organizations among the winners. After an unusual case, management took off restrictions on receiving rates by phone. Later the totalizer added the opportunity to put a bet over the internet. This allowed bentera to return to pittsburgh – he never wanted to live all his life in hong kong. Even after dozens of years, bill continues to do algorithmic rates.

Bill benter with his wife vivian fung


The transfer of a multi-million winnings is not the only case when bill sacrificed money. Part of the profit he passed into political and charitable organizations.

  • In 2008, benter supported the presidential campaign of barack obama.
  • In 2010, bill listed the funds of the israeli human rights organization "rabbi for human rights". In the same year he transferred $ 800 thousand. At the expense of the liberal organization j street.
  • In 2012, hairoller donated $ 1 million to pittsban university.
  • In 2019, bendend fund allocated $ 1 million to alzheimer’s disease research. A total of $ 3.4 million was spent on the fight against illness.
  • In the 2020th benter fund donated $ 1.5 million to combat covid-19.

Chain reaction

Although bill benter and alan woods have completely avoided publicity, they quickly learned about their person in narrow circles. We wanted to work with them both large investors and other players – among them zhelko rangeca. He collaborated with alan woods for a long time, but later created his own syndicate at rates. In one of the interviews, rangets spoke about his experience in racing:

"A significant part of our success is an innovative work done by benter".

In 2016, the american company for quantifying sig opened the organization nellie analytics inc., which will be engaged in analyzing matches on american football, basketball, football and tennis. In the future, gifted programmers may be able to eclipse bill beter’s success.

"I believe that the real business world is much more complicated than racing. I seem like a pony with one trick [man with one feature] ".

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