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Hickock - TopStep $150K Combine
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Hickock - TopStep $150K Combine

  #21 (permalink)
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6-7-2016

After some bad luck and over leveraging on the 150k combines, I decided to close it out and do a 100K.

I completed the 100K sometime last night with and after hours NQ trade. It was nice waking up to the $710 winner and a balance of $106,124 just as I planned.

Since I hit the goal overnight, I didn't trade the combine at all today. I could have easily added another $1500 if I had.

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I am undecided on whether I should trade the FTP exactly as I will trade the live account phase, or if I should just get the $2k as fast as possible and add markets the rest of of the 10 days.

It will probably come down to the market conditions. I am convinced that 70% of passing the combine is picking the right structures and conditions.

I will post the results of the FTP as soon as I have finished.

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  #22 (permalink)
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Hickock View Post
After some bad luck and over leveraging on the 150k combines, I decided to close it out and do a 100K.

I completed the 100K sometime last night with and after hours NQ trade. It was nice waking up to the $710 winner and a balance of $106,124 just as I planned.
...

I am undecided on whether I should trade the FTP exactly as I will trade the live account phase, or if I should just get the $2k as fast as possible and add markets the rest of of the 10 days.

It will probably come down to the market conditions. I am convinced that 70% of passing the combine is picking the right structures and conditions.

I will post the results of the FTP as soon as I have finished.

great job.
Can you share any of your suggestions?

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  #23 (permalink)
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KahunaDog View Post
great job.
Can you share any of your suggestions?

Thanks for the well wishes!

In all honesty, that is a very hard question to answer. My experience and methods make the way I traded this combine very very different than most of the people that read this board would trade a combine.

I have been trading futures for about 2.5 years. I had the extremely good fortune to have a mentor with 20+ years experience training me almost the entire time. Even with that resource, I made some very expensive mistakes.

I can only image what it is like for people that come in completely blind to trading and try to piece together a trading system with absolutely no clue as to how the market actually moves.


The sim nature of the combine allows you to go in hot and heavy when you really shouldn't. I dialed back my initial combine starting position to 4 contracts on the NQ, 2 on the ES and YM and 3 max on CL. If I saw really good structure on the NQ I would go in with 6 contracts to start and scale out two so I could let the others run.

I don't think you can pass a combine if you measure your targets in ticks. You must have a system that allows you to capture 10-30 point moves on the NQ, 4-9 pt moves on ES and at least $0.30 moves in crude.

I think that with the right conditions, trading large on the NQ and 2-3 contracts on CL is the way to go. You need those quick $300 winners on CL with multiple contracts. But you really need the $200 - $300 moves per contract on the NQ.

I think too many people focus on CL and ES. CL is a great instrument to trade if you know what you are doing. ES is a waste of mental capital. If you trade it (ES) too large, it will tie your gut in knots with every tick. Better to trade something that moves.

As a general trading rule, I suggest traders learn wave structure, harmonic structures, and the proper use of S/R via fibs.

I know that is sort of rambling non-answer. But it's the best I have right now

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  #24 (permalink)
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KahunaDog View Post
great job.
Can you share any of your suggestions?

Also, anything less than the $100K combine is a waste of time and money.

Trade in sim using the exact rules of the $100K. If you blow up, mark it down in a note book, buy a $100 money order and place it in an envelope. Hopefully you will have less $$$ in the envelope than the combine costs

Once you can pass in SIM using the TS rules at least 3 times, then sign up. Anything else and you should just take a few $100 bills and burn them.

The $100K is the best chance to get a real funded account. You need the confidence that you can get the $2k of FTP in 2-3 days and be able to realistically make $800-$1500 a day in the live account portion. The only way you can do that is with the larger scaling you have available in the 100/150k plans.

You must be able to end up with $8-10K on day eleven of the live portion. That is still a small account, but you dial back your risk once you are live and build it up.


But...at this point it is all conjecture...I still have phase 2 and 3 to go


Last edited by Hickock; June 8th, 2016 at 01:15 AM.
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  #25 (permalink)
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Hickock View Post
Also, anything less than the $100K combine is a waste of time and money.

Trade in sim using the exact rules of the $100K. If you blow up, mark it down in a note book, buy a $100 money order and place it in an envelope. Hopefully you will have less $$$ in the envelope than the combine costs

Once you can pass in SIM using the TS rules at least 3 times, then sign up. Anything else and you should just take a few $100 bills and burn them.

The $100K is the best chance to get a real funded account. You need the confidence that you can get the $2k of FTP in 2-3 days and be able to realistically make $800-$1500 a day in the live account portion. The only way you can do that is with the larger scaling you have available in the 100/150k plans.

You must be able to end up with $8-10K on day eleven of the live portion. That is still a small account, but you dial back your risk once you are live and build it up.

I like your parameters of 3x before combine.
Why do you suggest 100k or more? as less is a waste of money and time?

EDIT- I guess my thing is I can only trade ny am in reality and am not looking for trading 8-4est full time 5x week.

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KahunaDog View Post
I like your parameters of 3x before combine.
Why do you suggest 100k or more? as less is a waste of money and time?

EDIT- I guess my thing is I can only trade ny am in reality and am not looking for trading 8-4est full time 5x week.

Again, I think I come at this with a different perspective than 90% of the readers here. I own a totally unrelated business in a dying industry. I learned trading as a complete career change mid-life. I think most people here are looking to learn something and make a few extra bucks.

For the most part, I have replaced the other businesses income via trading. A TST funded account will give me the extra leverage needed to build capital faster than I could otherwise.

I want the ability to put on trades with 10 contracts that will make $6-10K in a single day without the true risk to my account. Those trades come along 2-4 times a month. I want the option of using considerably more leverage than I would normally feel comfortable employing when they do.

The smaller combine scaling plans do not allow for the quicker building of the capital needed to do this. I think the smaller loss limits force you into a scalping mentality. Very hard to build real capital that way.

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  #27 (permalink)
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Hickock View Post
I want the ability to put on trades with 10 contracts that will make $6-10K in a single day without the true risk to my account. Those trades come along 2-4 times a month. I want the option of using considerably more leverage than I would normally feel comfortable employing when they do.

The smaller combine scaling plans do not allow for the quicker building of the capital needed to do this. I think the smaller loss limits force you into a scalping mentality. Very hard to build real capital that way.

I'm sure you've seen this but they seem to be willing to give successfull traders more lots, no matter the combine size as long as one is capable or producing.
https://topsteptrader.desk.com/customer/portal/articles/1950862-funded-trader-scaling-plan

Good luck, you've seem to have found your niche. I agree with the 2-4x a month, larger moves set up.

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  #28 (permalink)
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Thanks again.

Man, you are up early for Hawaii time.

I have family that lives in Kona Kai. I'm always up early when we visit. Makes it hard to stay awake for the fun the rest of the day

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  #29 (permalink)
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Hickock View Post

...I want the ability to put on trades with 10 contracts that will make $6-10K in a single day without the true risk to my account.

This seems to me to be highly unrealistic. If you expose yourself to the market with 10 contracts, you are amplifying the effects of the mental skullduggery that the market performs on you as it fluctuates intraday. You are, in effect, exposing yourself to a TON of risk.

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  #30 (permalink)
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HoopyTrading View Post
This seems to me to be highly unrealistic. If you expose yourself to the market with 10 contracts, you are amplifying the effects of the mental skullduggery that the market performs on you as it fluctuates intraday. You are, in effect, exposing yourself to a TON of risk.

Says you...

I didn't take it with ten, but I had a short trade this morning on the NQ from 4517.25 to 4495. My risk was three points. With 10 contracts that is $600 total risk, give or take any slippage for the payoff of $4400. I know where and when to enter large with very little risk.

With that, I am out until FTP is done.

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