How to Bet on Horses – Basic Horseracing Betting Wagers

To effectively bet on horse racing you first have to understand the types of wagers offered. Most online horse betting sites and race tracks offer the popular wagers listed below.

WIN – You bet your horse to finish first. If your horse wins you collect.
PLACE – You bet your horse to finish second. If your horse finishes first or second you win.
SHOW – You bet your horse to finish third. If your horse finishes first, second or third you win.
ACROSS THE BOARD – You bet your horse to win, place and show. If your horse finishes anywhere in the first three positions you win.
WIN-PLACE – You bet your horse to win and place. If your horse finishes in either of the first two positions you win.

Exotic horse racing betting wagers – Exacta, Quinella, Trifecta, Superfecta

EXACTA – You bet two horses to finish first and second in exact order. A $2 Exacta 3-5 means that horse #3 must win and horse #5 must finish second. A $2 Exacta box 3-5 costs twice as much ($4) but combines the two horses to finish first and second, in either order. A $2 Exacta Box 3-5 pays off if the final order finish is either 3-5 or 5-3. Exacta betting is a favorite among skilled handicappers and can provide some very lucrative payoffs. At some race track Exactas are referred to as Exactors.

QUINELLA – You bet two horses to finish first and second in either order. A $2 Quinella 4-5 pays off if the final order of finish is 4-5 or 5-4. As long as your two horses finish in the top two positions, you win. Quinellas generally (but not always) pay less than Exactors, simply because your two selections can finish in either order, rather than in exact order.

TRIFECTA – You bet three horses to finish first, second and third in exact order. A $2 straight Trifecta 4-5-6 pays off only if the final order of finish is 4-5-6. A popular wager among many horse racing fans is a $1 Trifecta box of three or more horses. A $1 Trifecta box of three horses such as 4-5-6 costs $6 but includes six possible winning $1 combinations. The box pays off if your three selections finish in the top three positions in any order. The cost of a $1 Trifecta box is equal to the number of combinations multiplied by $1. Trifectas can produce huge payoffs on occasion. At some race tracks Trifectas are referred to as Triactors.

SUPERFECTA – Another wager that can produce huge payoffs. You bet four horses to finish first, second, third and fourth in exact order. A $2 straight Superfecta 4-6-5-2 pays off only if the final order of finish is 4-6-5-2. A popular wager among many fans is a $1 Superfecta wheel, in which you selectone horse to win and a combination of other horses to finish second, third and fourth. The cost of a $1 Superfecta wheel with one horse to win and three other horses to finish in any order in the second, third and fourth positions, costs $6. The cost of a $1 Superfecta box including four horses to finish first second, third and fourth, in any order, is $24.

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