Welcome to our guide on horse racing betting odds. If you’re looking for information on how horse racing odds work, we have the answers.
When you don’t understand how odds work, betting on horse racing can seem complicated. It’s actually very simple and we’re going to explain everything you need to know.
We have also picked out a list of sportsbooks that offer the best odds for horse racing. Sign up and claim your bonus below or keep reading to learn about horse racing betting odds.
If you’re reading this, it’s probably because you’re unsure of how horse racing betting odds work. By the time you’ve finished reading this section, you’ll understand the basics.
One of the things that confuses people is the fact that there are different types of odds. You might have seen fractional odds or decimal odds. We’re going to explain the difference between them and how they work.
Fractional odds are the traditional type for horse racing, but decimal odds have become more popular and common in recent years. Most betting sites offer the opportunity to set which type of odds you want to see displayed. The two types of horse racing odds are really just a different way of displaying the same information.
Let’s start with an example to explain fractional odds. You see a horse that is the favourite in a race. The odds for the horse are 2/1. The ‘2’ represents how much money you can win and the ‘1’ represents your stake. An easy way to think about fractional odds is that if you bet the number on the right, you win the number on the left.
If you bet ₹100 on the horse at 2/1 and it won the race, you would win ₹200 and get your stake of ₹100 back. So, in total, your successful ₹100 bet at 2/1 returns ₹300 (100 x 2 = 200 + 100 = 300).
Now we’re going to have a look at decimal odds. They’re even easier to understand than fractional odds, which is why the betting industry has moved towards them in recent years.
If you see a horse priced at odds of 3.00. The ‘3’ represents the total you will receive back on a successful bet, which is your winnings plus your stake. A ₹100 rupees bet at 3.00 would see you win ₹200 and also get your ₹100 stake back (200 + 100 = 300).
Sound familiar? It should do, because fractional odds of 2/1 and decimal odds of 3.00 are exactly the same. It’s just a different way of expressing the same price.
We’ve started with two very simple examples. Now we’re going to go into a bit more detail about the two types of horse racing betting odds, starting with the fractional.
As you’ll remember, in our previous example we used odds of 2/1. A bet at 2/1 would be described as odds-against. That means that the total you can win is greater than the stake.
You now know how a 2/1 bet pays out, so some other odds-against bets will be pretty self-explanatory. A 3/1 bet pays out at three times the stake, a 10/1 bet pays at ten times the stake… You get the idea.
Some odds-against bets are a little more complicated. You might see odds of 11/8 or 9/4. Basically, the same principle applies. With 11/8, if you bet ₹800, you’d win ₹1100 and get your stake back. At 9/4, if you bet ₹400, you’d win₹900, plus your stake.
The odds in no way dictate what stakes you can bet with; we’ve just chosen those stakes to make it simple to understand. If you bet ₹100 on a horse at 9/4, you would win ₹225 and get your 100 stake back (9 / 4 = 2.25 x 100 = 225).
Now we’re going to look at shorter odds, which you see on big favourites in a horse racing. You might see a price of 1/1, which is sometimes referred to as Evens. These is perhaps the simplest horse racing odds of all. If you bet ₹100, you can win ₹100, plus you get your initial stake back.
Odds-on bets offer even shorter prices. If a horse is 8/11 it means that if you bet ₹110, you can win ₹80 and get your stake back. Such odds are quite rare in horse racing and are much more common in sports such as soccer or tennis, where you tend to get one-sided events.
So now that you know what odds-on and odds-against prices look like as fractional horse racing betting odds, let’s see what they’d look like as decimal odds. We’ll start with some familiar examples.
For fractional odds-against bets we looked at 11/8 and 9/4 as examples. In decimal odds, 11/8 would be shown as 2.38, while 9/4 would be 3.25.
A ₹100 bet at 2.38 would return ₹238, made up of ₹138 winnings and your ₹100 stake. If you bet ₹100 on a horse priced at 3.25 and it wins, you would get ₹225 in winnings and your ₹100 stake back, totalling ₹325.
An Evens or 1/1 fractional price would be shown as 2.00 in decimal odds. A ₹100 bet at 2.00 would return ₹200 (100 winnings + 100 stake = 200).
Our fractional odds-on example was 8/11. In decimal odds, 8/11 is displayed as 1.73. A successful ₹100 bet at 1.73 would return ₹173 (73 winnings + 100 stake = 173).
While certain bets with fractional odds are easy to calculate in your head, some are more complicated. Again, it’s one of the reasons that there’s been a move towards decimal odds, which are so simple in comparison.
When you place a bet at a sports betting site, it will be added to a betslip. The betslip will show you how much you stand to win if your horse is successful, but it’s useful to be able to work it out yourself. Being able to calculate your potential winnings is a key ingredient when determining the value of a bet.
We’ve already ran through some examples of how to calculate both fractional and decimal horse racing betting odds. Here’s a chart that shows how much you can win when betting on a wider range of odds. As you become more used to betting on horse racing, such calculations will come to you easily, but for now it’s a useful tool.
|Fractional Odds||Decimal Odds||100 Rupees Bet Winnings|
Now that you understand how to read odds and calculate your winnings, let’s talk about where you can find the best horse racing betting odds.
For every horse race there will be multiple sportsbooks offering their own betting market. The odds between the various online bookmakers tend to be broadly similar, but you can find fluctuations. There are normally one or two sportsbooks that see things a little differently to the others, giving you the opportunity to pick up a bigger price.
There might be one horse racing betting site that you find the most comfortable to use. If you always use the same site though, it’s inevitable that you won’t always have the best available odds.
It pays to compare between several different betting sites. The favourite in a horse race might be priced at around 5.00 with most bookmakers, but if one is offering odds of 6.00, wouldn’t you want to place your bet with them?
This is why it makes sense to have more than one online betting account set up. All of our recommended sites offer great odds on horse racing, but there will be differences and the smartest bettors will be ready to take advantage. If you want to find out more about different sites and what they have to offer, make sure you check out our expert reviews.
You might have heard someone refer to the odds of a horse as a ‘good price’ or a ‘value bet’. In this section we’re going to explain what that means.
As we’ve discussed, you’ll find fluctuations between sites when making a horse racing betting odds comparison. If one or two sportsbooks are offering bigger odds than most of their competitors, this is an obvious example of having found a little more value.
Yet the concept of value in horse racing betting does not mean to simply find the biggest price available. Being able to identify when a horse is available at bigger odds than it should be, is the key to finding value.
Here’s an example. The favourite in an Indian horse racing event has odds of 4.00. After the favourite, the second favourite is priced at 8.00. You have reason to believe that the second favourite actually should be the favourite to win the race and is therefore available at bigger odds than it really should be.
It sounds simple, but you will need some experience and put in some work before you can identify such opportunities easily. Study the form and other statistics that are available. This will give you an insight into how a horse is performing.
By looking at the past record of a racehorse, you’ll come to understand how it performs in certain conditions. Does it favour a certain track, or weather conditions that make the ground soft or firm? How has it performed in past encounters against other horses running in the race?
When you study horse racing statistics, you’ll find that value bets stand out. With time you’ll be able to identify a horse that has been written off, but actually stands a chance of winning, or a favourite that should really be an even shorter price given their record. This is what finding value means and is a key weapon when betting on horse racing.
If you see horse racing betting odds of 2/1 the ‘2’ represents what you can win and the ‘1’ is your stake. In decimal odds 2/1 would be displayed as 3.00, which shows the total you’d receive for a successful bet with stakes of 1.00 (2.00 winnings +1.00 stake = 3.00).
No one horse racing betting site will always have the best odds. There are many sportsbooks and they will all offer slightly different odds on the same horse race. It’s best to sign up to a few reputable horse racing betting sites, so you can compare between them for each race.
Yes, many sports betting sites in India offer in-play betting on horse racing. It used to be the case that you could only place bets before a horse race started and then had to hope for the best. Now you can respond to the events of the race, by betting in-play.
Horse racing odds show how much you’ll win if you bet a certain amount, however there are different types of odds. Odds of 7/2 show that you would win 7 if you bet with a stake of 2. In decimal odds 7/2 would be displayed as 4.50, which shows how much you’d get back in return for a bet of 1.00 (3.50 winnings + 1.00 stake = 4.50).