About Straight Bets in Horserace Betting

Keen on betting on ponies? Well, there are 2 basic bet types you can indulge in: straight bets and exotic bets. For anyone who is starting out with horserace betting, it is highly recommended to stick to the straight bets. They’re simple and don’t cost much. All you need to do is check the calendar,  pick one horse that you expect to finish in 3rd, 2nd or 1st position. The minimum straight bet amount at majority of the tracks is around $ 2. What more, there are plenty of sources on the internet that’ll readily provide you with profitable horse racing tips to place such bets.


Exotic bets on the other hand enable you to place multiple wagers on multiple ponies, under a single bet. These are generally more difficult to understand and require someone with advanced knowledge and skill in the field of horse picking. Apart from that, they’re more expensive and pay higher than the straight bets. However, in this article we’ll focus only on the straight bets. Let’s learn a bit more about them.

More on straight bets

As mentioned earlier, in case of straight bets, you essentially bet on one single horse. Following are the possibilities you can bet on.


In this bet type, you are betting that your selected horse will finish in 1st place. You get to collect huge winnings if it finishes 1st indeed.


When you are betting on the place of a horse, you’re essentially predicting that the selected only will finish in 2nd or 1st place. If it does, you collect the winning amount. As expected, the pay out in a place bet is lesser than a straight bet, but you do get the security and option of betting on 2 places.



An extension of the earlier two bet types, this one’s about your selected horse finishing in the 3rd, 2nd or 1st place. As you have more places to pick from, there is a higher chance of winning and hence the pay-out is substantially lower than the above two bet types.



Also commonly referred to as a ‘combo straight bet,’ when you’re placing an across-the-board bet, you are betting on the selected horse to show, place and win. So, it’s 3 different bets combined into one. As you are essentially indulging in 3 different bet types, it is more expensive than the single bets discussed above.


For instance, placing a $ 4 across-the-board bet may cost you $ 12 as you’ll be placing 3 different $ 4 bets. Now if your selected horse finishes in 1st position, you win all the 3 – show, place and win bets. In case it finishes 2nd, you lose the win bet, but win the show and place bets. Similarly, if the selected horse finishes 3rd, you only win the show bet and lose the other two. These bets aren’t very popular as they are more expensive and yield less profit.



Place/show, win/place

Same as the across-the-board bet discussed above, you place multiple straight bets under a single bet. As may be evident, when you’re placing a win/place bet, you expect your horse to finish in 1st or 2nd position. On the other hand, making a place/show bet means you expect your horse to finish in 2nd or 3rd position.