Lay to the Bank Review

Lay to the Bank is a new to market lay betting tipster service which is operated by one Joe Hughes. He claims that his approach to betting can produce substantial profits for subscribers with seemingly little risk.

Introduction to Lay to the Bank

Once upon a time, lay betting was heralded by pretty much every man and his dog as the future of betting. Tipster services popped up everywhere talking about how you can “become the bookie” and how it’s so much easier to pick losers than winners. Unfortunately, this rhetoric started to drop off once people realised that there isn’t just risk involved with lay betting, but quite significant risk. Now, this can easily be managed, but for some reason, all the questionable tipsters just couldn’t seem to manage that…

Fast forward to today and we are looking at Lay to the Bank. A service that claims to be able to produce a profit using lay betting, seemingly involving low risk bets, and apparently supremely profitable. All of this is presented in a very reasonable fashion by Joe Hughes. If you didn’t look too hard at the results, I don’t think that you’d really see much reason to question anything. Especially if you have the first idea about lay betting.

Unfortunately though, I can’t help but feel like if you really hold a magnifying glass up to Lay to the Bank, there are a lot of holes in the claims made. I would even go as far as to say that it is actually quite concerning to me. Because as much as Joe Hughes does a great job of talking the talk, he doesn’t necessarily do anything that shows that he can walk the walk. Now, there is a lot to cover here, so with that in mind, I want to get straight into it.

What Does Lay to the Bank Offer?

When it comes to running a tipster service, there are lots of ways that you can complicate things. Lots of little tweaks to make it seem like something more or less than it is. This definitely applies to elements of Lay to the Bank, but by and large, I think that Joe Hughes is working on a very simple and straight forward tipster service. Something which really isn’t a bad thing.

What does this mean for you as a subscriber to Lay to the Bank? Well, the service is described as daily in the sales material, but that isn’t strictly speaking true. The fact is that this is definitely closer to a “near daily” tipster service. Not least of which is because of the fact that Joe Hughes openly acknowledges that he doesn’t send out bets on a Sunday.

Furthermore, it is worth noting that not every day will have selections available. We are simply told that if Joe Hughes is going to “take a day off” or there are no lay bets that he fancies, he will send out an email notifying you of this as soon as possible.

On the topic of emails, let’s talk about those and the logistical elements of Lay to the Bank. Selections are sent out each morning around 11am. This doesn’t have to be a huge deal because, as a lay betting service, you aren’t reliant on trying to obtain best odds or value. You just want to be laying at as low odds as possible, and whilst some horses will drift or shorten, it tends to be very close to the off that you see extremes of this.

Now, let’s address the fact that this is a lay betting service. That means that you need an account with a betting exchange. Joe Hughes recommends Smarkets saying that he simply “prefers it”. A little naïve in my mind. The fact is that Smarkets is cheaper to use (2% compared to Betfair’s 5%) and has lower staking restrictions. Meanwhile, with more users, Betfair is generally much more liquid. Honestly, it is concerning that even this basic information is skipped over.

Whilst we’re sort of talking about odds, I want to address something very interesting in Joe Hughes’s marketing. He shows just one bet that lost which was at 2.38. This means paying out £13.80. And it is presented as if this kind of loss is what is typical, however, the other bets that he shows have two bets at 7.6 and 7.4 respectively. Quite substantial outlays.

And from what I’ve seen, these latter numbers are much more likely than the lower ones. This can of course mean some quite significant potential outlay, for a number of reasons. Firstly, just the volume of bets. Lay to the Bank isn’t excessive, but Joe Hughes is still advising 4 bets per day. That adds up over the course of a week. Especially if you have a few moderate losers.

Building on this, let’s talk staking. As is typically the case with a lay betting service, you are backing level stakes if you are following Lay to the Bank. Of course, that means that your liability will vary depending on the odds you are able to get. Where this is particularly important is that the betting bank Joe Hughes recommends is ultimately quite small.

We are advised that you should have just 50 points available to you in order to see Lay to the Bank through. 25 points should be deposited in your betting exchange account, whilst an additional 50 points should be stored “just in case”. But, we are assured, you really shouldn’t need to use this.

The issue that I have with this low betting bank is that the strike rate for Lay to the Bank isn’t something that is discussed anywhere. Joe Hughes simply shows us an example of a day’s betting. This shows one incredibly low priced loss and 3 winning bets for a profit of about 1.5 points. We are also told that there are “lots of days where every lay bet wins”, all of which suggest a very high number. I’m just not convinced though.  

How Does Lay to the Bank Work?

If you want to know how Lay to the Bank works… Well, unfortunately, I really hope that you are happy with the idea that “lay betting is better”. Because that is about the closest to any sort of insight that you can get in terms of how Joe Hughes is working things. He says he doesn’t stick to any set odds (which is concerning to some degree), and that really is about it.

So, let me explain why this is so concerning to me. For those of you who aren’t familiar, lay betting means betting against a horse to win. When you win, you win back the amount that you staked. If you lose, you pay out a the odds you layed, minus your stake (so a 10.0 lay would mean paying out 9 points). Because Joe Hughes doesn’t stick to odds, this suggests that you may be laying some very long odds. And with a small betting bank, it isn’t hard to see how a loss at higher odds can take a long time to recover.

Compounding this concern are two other things. Firstly, Joe Hughes doesn’t actually say anything at all about what his approach to finding horses is. There is no evidence of a strategy or anything (as is evidenced by that statement about the odds), and as such, Lay to the Bank could well be based around just throwing darts at a copy of the Racing Post for all we know.

The other very major concern when it comes to Lay to the Bank, for me at least, is the fact that Joe Hughes also goes out of his way to rebuke providing substantive proofing. His rationale boils down to the notion that “the best proof you can get is seeing the lay bets for yourself”, simply saying that anything could be written on a spreadsheet and that seeing the results “with your own eyes will be the only way you are sure of the profits made”. Coincidentally the method that involves giving him your money too…

What is the Initial Investment?

If you want to sign up to Lay to the Bank, there is just one option available. This is a one time cost of £45 plus VAT for which you get access to selections for “90 betting days”. Factoring in missing out on Sundays, this puts the subscription length, in real terms, at about 106 days. At least, in theory. Seemingly, representing value for money.

Of note is that there is a full 30 day money back guarantee in place for Lay to the Bank. This is backed up by the fact that Joe Hughes is selling his service through Clickbank who are generally pretty good at ensuring this happens. It is worth noting however that this isn’t particularly prominently advertised in the sales material.

What is the Rate of Return?

The profit potential for Lay to the Bank is a very interesting thing, because it is all about context. Joe Hughes claims that Lay to the Bank has made £1,100 in 2 months. That sounds very reasonable and suggests £550 per month as an average. Again, not a ridiculous sounding number. However, that does mean returns of 55 points per month. More than twice what I would generally expect a decent tipster to see.

What is really concerning about this claim is that it is entirely unsubstantiated. As I mentioned, the only real “evidence” that we’ve seen for Lay to the Bank is some very questionable screenshots showing withdrawals from a betting bank. There is also that single day of winning bets that shows a profit of just 1.5 points. Some way from the average number.  

Conclusion for Lay to the Bank

In my mind, there is only really one compelling reason to want to sign up for Lay to the Bank, and that is the profit that Joe Hughes claims that you can make. I don’t think I know a single person who wouldn’t benefit from an extra £550 per month. Even though that sounds like an incredibly moderate number. It really does seem like a decent option.

Alas, were that things were so simple. Because in saying that there is only one compelling reason, I like to think that it opens the door to talk about all of the reasons thar you would want to avoid Lay to the Bank. And there are a hell of a lot of them here. And I want to start with the most glaring thing in my eyes.

Now, this isn’t explicitly the lack of information that is provided. That is definitely a frustration, and I will be talking about this, but it is Joe Hughes’s attitude towards providing said information. Any tipster worth their salt will generally want to provide you with some kind of proofing that shows their system working. And of course, there is an argument to be made that this can be falsified.

But if you are genuine as a tipster, then I see little reason why you wouldn’t provide this. Regardless of intent. Sure, it can be falsified, very easily. But if your results are genuine, then that is a problem for those who don’t want to believe you. And if you actually have a reputation that you want to develop or you have a development that you are looking to sustain, then it only strengthens your argument for your service.

I don’t believe that I’ve seen a single genuine tipster make the claim that in any way, shape, or form, that providing proofing is a bad thing. I keep hammering this home because, frankly, it worries me. Especially in light of the fact that Joe Hughes doesn’t actually provide any evidence that he is able to deliver. Something that doesn’t just refer to the proofing side of things.

There is no insight into the selection process, there is no expectation for results, there isn’t even any discussion about betting exchanges. I have quite literally added value to Lay to the Bank through highlighting the differences I did in this review. More than the tipster behind a service can be bothered to do. That is a pretty damning condemnation of Joe Hughes, and I will stand by it.

So, probably not all that surprisingly, I can’t really bring myself to recommend Lay to the Bank. The blunt fact of the matter is that there is little here of value in my opinion. From start to finish this is a service that just seems to be littered with flaws. Quite substantial ones, really. And it isn’t even like Joe Hughes is asking a few quid for his tips either. £45 is a lot to pay out for something that, in all seriousness, probably isn’t going to work.  


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From: Simon Roberts