1k to 5k Challenge Review – Bet Alchemist

1k to 5k Challenge is an annual challenge which is handled by Nicky Doyle of Bet Alchemist. It uses a very straightforward premise of turning a starting bank of £1,000 into £5,000.

Introduction to 1k to 5k Challenge

One of the things that I don’t often get to talk about when it comes to betting products is the wildly different approaches that the myriad of systems and services offer. The fact of the matter is that a lot of what is out there on the market is pretty straight forward. What these typically tend to be lacking however, is an end goal. This is something that is actually quite interesting to me for a number of reasons, mostly based around the measure of success.

When it comes to 1k to 5k Challenge though there is a very clear line. It is right there in the name of the service. Make £5,000. Now if I’m honest, I think that Nicky Doyle is asking a lot of himself there. Sure, those kinds of returns are possible, but they are a long way from common place and “what you should expect”. With that said though, if there is still a respectable profit, this can be a decent option.

Honestly, I am quite excited to look over 1k to 5k Challenge. This isn’t a typical tipster service and there is clearly plenty of potential on display here. Factor in the time that Nicky Doyle has spent operating Bet Alchemist and you have a service that could very nicely slot into a wider betting portfolio. So, let’s get down to brass tacks, and see if this can deliver or not.

What Does 1k to 5k Challenge Offer?

At its core, 1k to 5k Challenge is a tipster service like any other. However, it does come with a number of tweaks, twists, and tenants that ultimately make it stand out from the crowd. And this can be seen in a lot of elements of what Nicky Doyle is doing here. From the marketing to the service itself, this is just… Well, it’s a little bit different in the best ways.

First things first, I want to talk logistics. More specifically, an element that you don’t always see with tipsters. You see, Nicky Doyle usually kicks off his 1k to 5k Challenge on a November. Fortunately, you don’t necessarily have to join then in order to take advantage of the selections.

Another quite interesting thing about 1k to 5k Challenge is that this isn’t just your daily tipster service. In actual fact, most of the time, you will only receive selections for weekend racing as well as major festivals. There are occasional midweek tips, but these are the exception rather than the rule and you receive a notification in advance when they will be sent out.

Selections are sent out on the morning of racing, which isn’t necessarily ideal. With that said though, Nicky Doyle does typically get them out around 9am. This does mean that there are still some decent prices available. Furthermore, because of the focus on weekends and festivals, it also means pretty much anybody can be involved.

Now we come to one of the most outstanding elements of 1k to 5k Challenge. You see, when receive your selections via email from Nicky Doyle, you also receive his analysis. Each selection comes with information on why it has been selected. This means that you are always informed about what is going on.

All of this brings me to the bets themselves. Honestly, this is one of the more eclectic tipster services that I think I have looked at recently, although, I don’t see this as being a bad thing at all.

What this means for you as a punter is that you can expect a combination of straight win bets, each way bets, and even lay bets as well. It is also possible that you will be advised to back selections as a variety of different accumulators as well. As a result of this, Nicky Doyle recommends that you have as many betting accounts open as possible, as well as having accounts with a betting exchange.

Naturally, all of this flexibility in terms of the bets placed has a massive impact on the available odds. By and large, 1k to 5k Challenge is a service that favours value and horses are typically priced at 3/1 or above. Honestly though, you will generally be betting at much higher odds than these. Particularly where you are betting on those smaller accas.

As a final not on the topic of bets, I want to talk a little bit about the volume. As you would expect from a service that doesn’t tip daily, this is overall, not particularly high volume. However, for context, the last 1k to 5k Challenge season produced 245 bets or around 4 per week. These just all come over a small period of time.

All of this just leads some of the more numbers based elements of 1k to 5k Challenge to discuss. Now I think that the most important element is the staking plan. Because honestly, it is a massive part of how Nicky Doyle is able to claim the profits that he does.

Effectively, you are dealing with level stakes which, in his proofing, Nicky Doyle refers to as 1 point. It should be noted however that this is all based around betting 2% of your betting bank per bet. This compounding means that 1k to 5k Challenge theoretically never carries too much in the way of risk.

It seems like an incredibly obvious thing to say, but a £1,000 betting bank is recommended here. With that said though, Nicky Doyle does say that you can scale this down if you are so inclined. The important part is that you are consistently staking that 2% of your bank in order to maintain profits.

Finally, I want to talk about what sort of things you can expect from the strike rate. Because this is a very interesting element. Historically, Nicky Doyle has attained a number of around 40-42%. A very respectable number, even when you factor in that this includes the each way and lay bets.  

How Does 1k to 5k Challenge Work?

There are a few key tenants when it comes to how 1k to 5k Challenge works. At its core, this is a value based service. Nicky Doyle actually talks quite extensively about this. He explores the idea of bookies manipulating prices and how you should weigh up odds. Fundamentally, all of this is a pretty decent foundation on which to build a service.

From here, there is also the point to be addressed about receiving information on why a given horse has been chosen. Let’s not mince our words here. Every single selection that you receive, you have insight into. Sure, they may not always be quite what you are looking for or expecting, but the information is there.

This is really important to me as it allows you to not just improve your own understanding, but also ensures that you are always making an informed decision. Whilst this sounds like it should be common place, the truth of the matter is that this kind of thing is actually a bit of a rarity in this industry.

On top of this, 1k to 5k Challenge members get access to live proofing which means you can get an idea of what to expect. Nicky Doyle also provides extensive historic proofing on the Bet Alchemist website as well. This gives you a pretty good indicator of what sort of things you can expect in the longer term as well. All of this combined means that you always have a pretty good idea of what you’re dealing with.  

What is the Initial Investment?

There are two options available if you want to sign up to 1k to 5k Challenge and honestly, both of them are very reasonably priced. Firstly, Nicky Doyle offers a quarterly subscription. This is priced at £14.99 every 3 months (plus VAT).

Alternatively, and offering slightly better value for money (£4.17 per month compared to £5) is the yearly plan. This is priced at £50 (again, plus VAT) which does mean a somewhat larger initial outlay. With that said though, this still isn’t a lot of money to pay out compared to other tipster services on the market.

 Both of these options come with a full 30 day money back guarantee as well. This is also backed up by Clickbank who ultimately handle payment for 1k to 5k Challenge. As well as this, Nicky Doyle says that if you haven’t made profit at the end of 12 months of betting, you can get your subscription costs back as well.

What is the Rate of Return?

So, the income potential for 1k to 5k Challenge is seemingly quite straight forward. Because you should be making £5,000 per year right? Or at least, five times your  initial betting bank. The reality however is that whilst this is what Nicky Doyle aims for, you are unlikely to do quite this well. None the less, that doesn’t mean that there isn’t profit to be had.

Now measuring the profits is a bit of a tricky thing, because the only real consistency is on bank growth. Whilst results have varied, generally speaking you have seen most historic years end up around 50-80% on your betting bank. There has also been an instance of a loss as well which is definitely something to factor in.  

Conclusion for 1k to 5k Challenge

It is interesting to me that Nicky Doyle puts so much weight behind the concept of value. Because that is ultimately what I believe 1k to 5k Challenge has to be judged on. The fact of the matter is that fundamentally, this is a pretty decent looking tipster service. However, I have looked at a lot of things that have looked good, that just don’t quite cut the mustard.

So, I want to start here by establishing some of the positives. Firstly, I actually quite like the fact that Nicky Doyle is focused on weekend and festival racing.  In my experience, a lot of tipster services prefer to focus on providing daily tips and a broader focus. This isn’t inherently a bad thing and in fact, a number of those services are ultimately profitable which is what really matters.

But I have also long maintained that the more casual punter can be overlooked. The fact is that not everybody is looking for high volume daily tips. Some people just enjoy watching horse racing on ITV and having a bet. And it is for those people that I think that 1k to 5k Challenge is ultimately going to be at its best.

Honestly, Nicky Doyle does some great things here. I like the fact that you receive information on why a horse has been tipped. Especially because if you don’t know horse racing that well (again, think casual punter), then it provides you with extra insight into a race, ultimately heightening your enjoyment.

I also like that this eschews favourites. Betting is ultimately about discipline, but let’s not pretend that it isn’t fun when an outsider romps home at 20/1. There is a definite buzz. Now this might not appeal to your more professional bettor. But to a hobbyist, that is quite an important element.

And all of this is delivered for an incredibly low price. To get everything that Nicky Doyle is offering for the full year for £50 is a pretty good option. In actual fact, this is roughly what some tipster services will cost you in a month.

Which brings me back to the question of value. If you are exclusively looking to make money from your betting, then there just isn’t a lot of that here. Sure, there is some value. But I think you can do much better than returns of 80% of your betting bank.

If on the other hand you want to enhance watching racing for pleasure, whilst making a little extra. Then this is worth some serious consideration. A betting bank of about £200 isn’t prohibitive and that 80% return would see your subs covered and a night out at the end of the year.

So, would I ultimately recommend 1k to 5k Challenge? Unfortunately, for most people I don’t believe that this will be a viable option. The fact is that most of us use betting as a way to supplement income and getting the highest returns possible is a very important part of that. And whilst I don’t doubt Nicky Doyle’s abilities or understanding, the unfortunate fact of the matter is that 1k to 5k Challenge just doesn’t deliver on the profit.


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From: Simon Roberts