Online Sports Betting- Betting on Horse Races

Betting on horses at an online sportsbook offers all the options you would find at the track or off-track venue. As an added plus, you can also wager on certain options that can only be found at online books such as HRWager.

Single Horse Bets

The most basic track bet you can place online is Win, Place or Show. A straight win bet covers the horse finishing first. The place bet covers the second-place horse and the third horse to cross the finish line is covered by the show bet.

You should think of these types of wagers as ‘single horse bets.’ They only cover one horse that is in the race. Here are the three different ways to cash a winning ticket on one horse:

  • To cash a win bet, your horse must win the race.
  • To cash a place bet, your horse must finish first or second.
  • To cash a show bet, your horse must finish first, second or third.

The amount won depends on the horse’s closing odds. If you wagered $2 on a horse at 2/1 odds to win, you should basically double your money. Payouts for place and show bets are determined by the closing odds as well as the total amount of money in each pari-mutuel betting pool.

A fourth bet on a single horse is referred to as “across the board.” This is when you bet a horse all three ways. If they win, you will collect on all three money pools (win, place and show).

Single Race Exotics

The two main exotic wagers on a single horse race are Exactas and Trifectas. Within these bets there are several variations.

Picking the top two horses in the official finishing order constitutes an exacta bet. To win, they must finish in the exact order you bet them.

A popular variation is a boxed exacta. You can still win if they finish first and second in either order. A $2 exacta boxed will actually cost $4 since you are betting the two horses each way.

The trifecta expands this bet to the top three horses with the option to box that bet as well. A $2 trifecta boxed with cost $12 since there are six possible winning combinations.

Most of the big race tracks will offer Superfecta wagers. This expands your bet to the top four horses in each race. The risk and the return on this bet are both very high.

Multiple Race Exotics

The most popular multi-race bet you can place is the Daily Double. To cash in on this bet, you would have to correctly pick the winner in two consecutive races.

The Pick 3 expands this to three races in a row with the Pick 4 covering the winner in four straight races. Some tracks will offer betting pools for picking five or more consecutive races.

Online Sportsbook Betting Options

Most online books will post futures odds to win the biggest races of the year such as the Kentucky Derby and Breeders’ Cup Classic. This is a fixed odds bet as opposed to the changing odds at the track. Horse racing props for the biggest races is another betting option unique to online books.

One of the best ways to bet on any horse race is head-to-head matchups. Online books will release odds for one horse pitted against another. To win, your horse has to post the better finishing position among the two.