Horse Racing Betting Terminology

Horse racing is among the oldest betting sports in the world, and while it has been modernised for a more global world in many ways, plenty of old phrases and terminologies have remained while a multitude of new ones added.

This can make it extremely confusing for the new bettor entering the horse betting industry for the first time, and sometimes it can be enough to put off even the most savvy of bettors who may be veterans in other parts of the betting world, such as in Australian online pokies.

The betting side of the deal can be made much easier by learning some of the simpler terminologies and phrases used by bookmakers around the world.

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Straight Bet

This is among the phrases that bettors will come across the most, and is the simplest form of thoroughbred wagering available to newcomers and seasoned veterans. It means putting money down on the idea that the horse will win the race, and the bet will be successful if that specific horse crosses the finish line ahead of all the others. A straight bet can be broken down into a variety of different wagers, however:

  • In the Money: this means that the horse finished in either first, second, or third place
  • On the Nose: a bet made where the horse has to win the race, and nothing more
  • Across the Board: this involves putting down three bets at once. One is for the horse to win, one is for the horse to come in second, and one for the horse finishing in third place. If the bet is successful for all three rounds, then it is successful and the bookmaker pays out the entire amount. If the horse comes second, the bettor receives winnings for only two bets, and so forth
  • Place: this is a term used when a horse comes in second place. This is a wager usually taken out on a horse with the belief that it will come in second, but not close enough to the winning horse to rather bet on that hose.

More Exotic Wagers

These are bets that are more complicated that the straight bet, and can often involve putting money down on more than one horse at a time.

  • Daily Double: Betting on two separate horses on the same day for a daily double, which is usually the first and second races for that day
  • Exacta: here, the bettor picks the first two finishers in a race in the order that they finish
  • Boxed bet: This is a complicated wager that covers all of the possible combinations of finishing places for multiple horses at a time. It requires that the money be put on the horses finishing the race, but in no specific order
  • Quinella: a variation of the boxing bet
  • Superfecta: another complicated bet where the bettor will need to select the first four horses to finish the race in the exact order that was chosen in order for the bet to be successful.