A show bet means the horse you're rooting for can place first, second or third. You win based on where the horse actually finishes, with exact selections paying out larger sums. The next step is knowing the morning line for the horses you're interested in, which can change up until the beginning of the race. Although the odds suggest many are betting on California Chrome, that doesn't mean you need to bet on him. Bets can be placed on any horse, even the long shot, said Terry Cox, sports book director at the Peppermill Resort Spa Casino.
But betting on the long shot, the horse with the highest odds, can win you more money if that horse wins. Cox still remembers the excitement of his first horse race at the Del Mar race track in San Diego several years ago. It's an adrenaline rush. Local sports books expect a full house today with local interest in California Chrome, who is co-owned by Topaz Lake's Steve and Carolyn Coburn.
It's a lot ask a 3-year-old horse to win, but winning the Triple Crown is the highest honor in sports, and that hasn't happened in 36 years. Winning all three races — the Kentucky Derby, the Preakness Stakes and the Belmont Stakes — would be "kind of like bragging rights" for the West Coast horse industry, Cox said.
Betting on horses doesn't just include win, place or show bets. Exotic bets like the exacta, trifecta and superfecta are other options. With the exacta, you play two horses that must come in first and second in the exact order you bet. But you also can bet on an exacta box, which means the two horses can come in first and second in either order.
Depending on the type of bet you place, you can sometimes win money if it finishes second or even third. But you have to understand the lingo and how to place the appropriate wager to pull it off. Strictly speaking, placing a straight bet means that you're wagering on the horse to win—period.
If it finishes second by a nose, you've lost. But a looser definition says a straight bet is when you wager that a horse will finish first, second or third. That said, several terms relate to different kinds of straight bets that can increase your odds of winning a little money. A winning horse will pay the most on bets that it will finish first. It will pay a little less for place bets and even less for show bets, but it can effectively pay out in three ways—thus the allure of across-the-board bets.
As the name suggests, "exotic" wagers are fancier and more complicated.
Okay, with that little bit out of the way, let's take a look at the betting lingo and the types of wagers one can make on an equine athlete. Below is the smorgasbord of wagering opportunities offered by Churchill Downs on Derby Day:. WIN: A bet on a horse to win if you don't know this you probably shouldn't be betting.
Those are the standard bets that everybody is familiar with. They are simple, straight forward, it's easy to calculate the cost, and they are easy to make. Where things start to become more complicated is with what are known as the exotic bets.
Below are the exotic wagers offered by Churchill Downs this weekend:. Wagering on horses is done via pari-mutuel wagering, a system of wagering where each player is betting against other players, not the house. The odds represent what percentage of the total pool each horse is receiving.
Below is an odds-percentage conversion chart for typical odds in horse racing. To figure you how much you'll get paid if you hit your win bet, simply divide the numerator of the odds by the denominator, multiply that number by the amount bet, and then add the amount bet.
Place and Show payouts are more difficult to calculate since tracks don't display the odds on those bets. Usually, they pay less than half what the winning odds play unless the horse is a huge longshot and the favorite doesn't finish in the top three. Figuring out the payouts on exotics are a mixed bag; tracks display the "Will Pays" for exactas and daily doubles, but you won't have a clue as to what your trifecta, superfecta, Pick 3, etc. Generally speaking, trifectas and superfectas will return larger amounts, but be careful, playing all the favorites in a trifecta is likely going to return a small amount especially when compared to how much your bet cost.
The key to hitting larger scores is to find some longer priced horses to play along with shorter priced ones. We've got all of these exotic bets where you're trying to pick the order of finish or the winners in multiple races. Many first time bettors think that to play a exacta or tri or any other exotic requires you to use just two or three or four horses in your play. You can select as many horses as you want but the more horses you select, the more expensive your ticket becomes.
The first step in determining what a specific bet will cost is to know the minimum amount required for each bet. At Churchill Downs, here are the minimum amounts required for each bet offered:. Two additional exotic betting terms that are relevant to wager cost are "BOX" and "WHEEL", and they apply specifically to exactas, trifectas and superfectas.
For example, say you like the 1, 2, and 3, you want to play them in an exacta but you don't know which one you want to pick on top to win. You could "BOX" those three horses in an exacta and you would win if any of those three finish first and second.
For example, let's say you like the 1 to win, but think the 2, 3 and 4 might finish second. In that situation you would bet an exacta wheel where the bet would be set up to pay if the 1 wins and either finish second. If any of win and the 1 finishes 2nd, you would not win with that exacta wheel. You might be thinking, "Why would anyone NOT box an exacta, trifecta, or super since our picks can finish in any order, while with a wheel there is less margin for error?
A box bet is calculated by multiplying the bet amount by the total number of horses selected, and then multiplying that by the total number of horses selected, minus one. Or, stated another way:. Make sense? For trifecta and superfecta boxes you calculate the cost the same way but keep subtracting one from the total number of horses in each leg. For example:.
You can see how the costs start to escalate in a box situation since you're playing every possible combination with those numbers. With a WHEEL bet, the cost is kept down but you need to decide which horses you like in certain positions.
Let's take the above situation again. Let's say you like the 1 and 2 to win, but think any of those five could finish 2nd. Here is how you would calculate that bet cost:. Because you are using the 1 and 2 in both the win and place slots, you calculate the wager by multiplying the number of horses in the first leg by the number of horses in the second leg, minus one.
If you excluded the 1 and 2 from the second position but still used five horses, the bet would calculate as below:. Right away you can see that an exacta wheel bet costs about half as much as the box situation since you are playing fewer combinations. There's a higher risk, but the rewards and profit margin are better since you are not wasting money on combinations that you don't believe will come in.
Saying "with" is how you separate horses from the first, second, third or fourth positions to the clerk. And always check your ticket before you walk away. Calculating trifecta and superfecta wheels follows the same formula as the exacta bet above. However, if you want an easier way to calculate your wagers, you can find a variety of waging calculators on the web, including a nice one at WinningPonies.
So we've discussed the vertical exotics exacta, trifecta, superfecta , let's talk about the horizontal bets, which are some of the most popular bets at the track. A horizontal wager is any bet that involves betting on a series of races, rather that just one specific race. A Pick 4, where you try to pick the winners of four consecutive races, is a horizontal wager and can pay very nicely, depending on the odds of the horses that win during the sequence.
As with all wagers, you can select as many horses as you want but the cost of your ticket increases with every horse added into the mix. Let's say you are looking at a four race sequence where you like the following horses in each race:. To collect on a Pick 4 wager using the horses above, you would need at least one of your selections to win in each leg; pretty simple.
Using only one horse in a specific race, as is done in the 3rd race in our example, is called "singling" a horse. Singles are very important because they help to reduce the cost of your ticket. Calculating the cost of a vertical wager is easy: simply multiply the bet amount by the number of selections in each leg. Using our above example, that Pick 4 ticket would cost the following amount.
The power of the "single" should be obvious; if we had selected two, three or four horses in that 3rd race, our ticket would have doubled, tripled or quadrupled in cost. It's not required that you use a single; if you have the money to spend and you want better coverage, spend away. But most players like to try and find one race where they have a prime single so they can use more horses in the races where things appear more wide-open.
Additionally, you don't have to play each wager to the minimum amount. Of course, the higher the base amount, the more expensive your ticket becomes. If you're a little overwhelmed with the sheer amount of betting options you can take heart with the fact that you don't need to play them all.
In fact, the best wagering strategy usually involves finding a solid win bet before doing anything else. If you can't figure out which horse is going to win a race, you probably shouldn't be diving into bets requiring you to also pick horses in second, third, or fourth.
But if you find a solid play for the win, then you can start to branch out into the more complicated wagers. Each portion is treated by the totalizator as a separate bet, so an across-the-board bet is merely a convenience for bettors and parimutuel clerks. In addition to straight wagers, "exotic" wagers offer bettors an opportunity to incorporate the placement of different horses in one or multiple races.
The two broad types of exotic wagers are horizontal and vertical. Horizontal exotic wagers are bets on multiple horses in one particular race, while vertical exotic wagers involve predicting results across multiple races. Both have specific options for which bets are available and are detailed below. In the most basic horizontal wager, an exacta , the bettor selects the first and second place horses in the exact order.
Picking the first three finishers in exact order is called a trifecta and a superfecta refers to the specific finishing order of the top four horses. Boxing is a tactic that increases the odds of winning an exotic wager by removing the need to choose the exact order. A quinella , which boxes an exacta allowing the first two finishers to come in any order and still win , is the basic box, but boxing can be applied to the trifecta and superfecta as well. In a sense, a win bet can be thought of as a specific type of wheel bet.
Vertical bets are spread over different races. A daily double is an exotic wager placed on the winner of two consecutive races. Picking the winner of three, four, five or six straight races is referred to as a pick-3 , pick-4 , pick-5 and pick-6 respectively.
In addition to traditional betting with a bookmaker, punters bettors are able to both back and lay money on an online betting exchange. Punters who lay the odds are in effect acting as a bookmaker. The odds of a horse are set by the market conditions of the betting exchange which is dictated to by the activity of the members. By the late 19th century over tracks were in operation in the country but those opposed to gambling caused the banning of bookmakers and horse racing at the beginning of the next century.
In pari-mutuel tote betting was introduced, helping the industry to prosper and that has continued to be the case to the present day. Pari-mutuel betting is currently legal in 32 US states. Due to new legislation horse race betting in the US could change significantly in the near future. Hong Kong generates the largest horse racing revenue in the world and is home to some of the largest horse betting circles including the Hong Kong Jockey Club founded in Betting on horse racing is ingrained in local culture and is seen as an investment.
The revenue the club generate from various wagers makes it the largest taxpayer for the government. A government survey in found that nearly one million Australians 5. Horse race betting in New South Wales NSW is conducted by bookmakers at race meetings and via telephone and Tabcorp tote betting at racecourses and through various retail outlets including the internet.
Betting on horse racing in the UK is wide and varied. In there were 8. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Main article: Glossary of bets offered by UK bookmakers. Anderson; Ian S. Blackshaw; Robert C. Siekmann; Janwillem Soek 28 October Sports Betting: Law and Policy. National Thoroughbred Racing Association. Archived from the original PDF on Retrieved The Art of Manliness.
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