Horse Betting Terminology

To play any sport or do any activity, it is vital that you know about it and also the terms and jargon associated with it. That is true about horse betting terminology as well. Horse betting has been around from as long as people have raced horses. In the past few hundred years, it has evolved into an organized activity with the development of horse racing on similar lines as well. When you walk into a racing arena to place your bets on your favorite horse, it will definitely help if you know the terminology associated with the sport and the betting types in it. On this page we will list out horse betting terminology that you hear often and will need to use.

Basic Horse Betting Terms

So what are the common horse betting terminology you should be aware of? Most of these revolve around the different types of bets you can place at a horse racing track. In this section we will list out a few that you hear regularly at the race tracks.

Some of the most commonly used horse betting terms are:

  • Across the board: This is a type of bet that you can place to cover all angles – you basically bet on the horse to win, place, or show. So if you place this bet and the horse wins, you collect three ways (win, place, and show). If the horse comes second you collect two ways (for place and show) and if it comes third you collect one way (for show).

  • Boxed bet: This is a bet on all combinations and is seen in a multi-horse scenario.

  • Daily double: This is a bet on selecting winners of two consecutive races. The winners selected are usually from the first two races.

  • Breakage: This is a term used to refer to the small change left over in pari-mutuel playoffs that are rounded off, usually to a dime or a nickel. Usually, breakage is divided among the track and the state. Sometimes, portions are also allotted to specific funds, like funds set aside for breeding, etc.

  • Exacta: This is a bet that requires picking of the first two finishers in a race. As the name suggests, they must be picked in the exact order in which they finish.

  • In the money: This term refers finishing in the top three positions.

  • Lock: This is a colloquial term for a sure-shot winner.

  • Odds-on: This term refers to odds of less than even money.

  • Parlay: This term is used to refer to a situation where you use the winnings from one bet to fund your next bet.

  • Place: This refers to a second place finish.

  • Place bet: A bet on a horse to finish in the top two slots – either first or second.

  • Quinella: This is a wager where you pick the first two finishers; however, you get paid regardless of which one wins and which comes second. • Show bet: A bet on a top three finish.

  • Superfecta: This bet requires you to pick the top four finishers in the exact order.

  • Trifecta: This bet requires picking the top three finishers in the exact order.

  • Win bet: A bet on a first place finish.

These are only some of the terms used in horse betting. However, these are enough to get you started and on familiar ground the next time you hit the race track.

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