ABCs of Racing Series - Part 4: Wagering [Kentucky Derby]


There are also daily doubles in which you pick the winner in two consecutive races. It used to be that this wager was offered once a day (daily), but now most tracks offer rolling doubles in which you can pick any consecutive races. Pick three, pick four, pick five, and pick six wagers are similar in that you pick the winner in consecutive races. Most tracks will offer rolling pick threes, but pick four, five, or six are designated races and not necessarily offered every race day or at every track.

Pari-mutuel wagering is the type of betting offered in horse racing. This means that all bets of a particular type are placed together in a pool. The odds are set at the time the race starts, which is when the pool closes. After the track takes its cut, the payoff amounts are calculated by sharing the pool among all winning bets. 
                Approximate Payoff to Win on a $2 Bet 
                If The Odds Are   If The Odds Are

                 ODDS   PAYS             ODDS   PAYS 
                    1-5    $2.40              8-5   5.20
                    2-5      2.80              9-5   5.60 
                    1-2      3.00                 2   6.00 
                    3-5      3.20              5-2   7.00 
                    4-5      3.60                 3   8.00
                     Even   4.00              7-2   9.00
                       6-5   4.40                4   10.00 
                       7-5   4.80             9-2  11.00 
                       3-2   5.00               5   12.00

Of course there are other wagering options, but these are the most common. For on the go betting guidance and wager calculators, check the iPhone and Android app stores. There are several handy apps available for free, like the newly released Kentucky Derby app.

Tomorrow is Opening Night at Churchill Downs, so go out and try your handicapping and wagering skills!

Photo: Courtesy Kentucky Derby

About Jessie Oswald
I'm a lifetime Louisville resident with a passion for horse racing. When I'm not working as an immigration paralegal or taking care of my family, I follow Thoroughbred racing and love to share the excitement and beauty of the sport with anyone willing to learn!
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