Danger and Opportunity of Martingale

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Many people are always looking for a foolproof system to make money. Easy money and quick wealth will always be a lure for us. The dream of overnight wealth that will solve all our problems.

That is why many people gamble. Over the years I have read many betting systems, but I understand few of them as I do not understand the games. About the only gambling game I understand is Roulette as we used the Roulette wheel  for probability calculations in statistics.

Gambling is a numbers game. If you flip a coin continuously for many iterations, the head/tails will even out to be 50/50. A man with the name Martingale used this bit of knowledge to devise a betting system that is foolproof. You have to win.



Google Martingale and study the system.

The theory goes like this for Roulette.

You put $1 on Red. If you win, you put $1 on Black. Since it is a 50/50 game, the next turn of the wheel should land on Black. If the wheel stops on Red, you lose $1. You now put $2 on Black. If Black wins, you get back $4 for a $1 profit. If the ball again falls on Red, you put $4 on Black. You keep repeating.


On paper it sounds like a foolproof system. In real life it is extremely dangerous. One Sunday afternoon I downloaded a Roulette game and played the Martingale. Just $1. Everything went very well, until I hit a losing run of 101 Reds with my money on Black. That is impossible numbers.

Starting your Martingale with $1, you will loose $549 755 813 888 if you loose 40 times in a row. On run 41 you will have $1 099 511 627 776 and if you win, you will make $1 profit!

The message is clear – stay away from the Martingale. It can ruin you in a few turns of the wheel.

The reason for this post, is because I read an article this morning where somebody wrote very favourably about the “Marty.” It is bad news.


If you start with 5c, how many times do you have to double your money to become a millionaire? After doubling it 24 times, you have $838 361. Then you double for the 25th time and you have $1 677 722.

I think I should write the story of how I turned 5c in R35.70 one December holiday.

Why do you not think about it and take the challenge?

For now, just remember this: even if somebody endearingly calls the Martingale “Marty,” it is a dangerous system. But if you use the principle to grow your money, it can make you very rich.

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