Types of bets

Common Types of Bet
There are 3 basic Bet Types on sport Win, Each Way, and more recently Lay.

Win Bet

A win bet is the most simple type of bet you are betting on a team/horse/player to win something like a football match a horse race or a tennis tournament etc.

Bookmakers will offer odds on each team/horse/player which tell you how much you win if that selection wins.

You then make a stake and if your selection wins you get your stake back + your winnings which are based on multiplying the odds and your stake.

Win Bet Example
€50 win on Red Rum at 10/1
If Red Rum doesn’t win then you lose your stake. If Red Rum does win then you multiply your stake by the odds €50x10 =500 and you receive your €50 stake back. So your total return on this bet would be €550. Your profit on the €50 stake would be €500.

Each-Way Bet

An Each Way (EW) bet is basically two bets. A win bet like above and a place bet.

The first thing to know about an Each Way bet is how the staking works.

A bet of €25 EW is exactly as it sounds - "€25 each way" - i.e. Two €25 bets. So €25 EW is a €50 bet in all.

The place part of the bet is essentially a backup bet. You will receive a return on this part of the bet if your selection wins but also if it nearly wins

What this means in practice varies by sport but is always quoted with the list of odds as something like this "Each Way 1/4 1,2,3"

This means that the place bet of your each way bet will pay out at odds of 1/4 of the the win odds is your selection finishes in positions 1,2, or 3. If you finish 4th or lower it loses.

Each-Way Bet Example
You bet €50EW on Dipsy Discs in the 4.15 at Lingfield at odds of 25-1
The Each Way terms are 1/5 1,2,3
Bookmakers take the €100 stake out of your betting account (€50EW is 2 €50 bets)

There are 3 different outcomes for this bet

Horse Fails to Win or Place
If the horse finishes out of the places (1,2,3) such as 4th or worse then you lose your entire stake

A Place but not a Win
If the horse finishes 2nd or 3rd then it has placed, but hasn't won. There is no difference between 2nd and 3rd - they count the same - they are both "a place".
So remembering that your €50EW is TWO bets - €50 win and €50 place.

A) The first thing is that the €50 win bet is a loser.
B) However the €50 place bet is a winner which as we mentioned above is calculated based on the odds (25-1) and the place fraction (1/5th), meaning in this case the place odds are 5-1.

So that bet wins €50 x 5 = €250 + your stake back giving you a total return of €300.

Putting it together:
So on your €50 EW bet (a bet of €100) you ended up getting €300 back in total = a profit of €200, being the net €250 profit on the place bet and €50 loss on the win bet.

A Win
If the horse actually wins then the first thing to realise is that it also places - hence both bets win

A) The win bet pays at 25 x €50 = €1250 + your €50 win stake back
B) The place bet pays exactly as above being €250 profit + your €50 place stake back

Putting it together:
Overall you win €1250 + €250 = €1500, and your account is credited with that plus all of your stake back = €1,600

Place Only Bet

Some bookmakers and exchanges allow you to make a place only bet. This is the same as the place part of the Each Way Bet, but you do not have to make the win part of the bet.

Place Only Bet Example
You want to bet on Dipsy Discs finishing in the first three places in the 4.15 at Lingfield.
You place a bet of €50 at 4/1 (note you may not get as good odds on a place only bet as you would do on the place part of an each way bet) on Dipsy Discs being place.
If Dipsy Discs finishes first, second or third you will receive the same return - €50 x 4/1 =€250 returned. If Dipsy Discs finishes fourth or worse then you lose your stake.

The advantage of betting place only is that you don’t risk losing the stake on the win part of the bet but if your selection does win you don’t win anymore than if it had finished 2nd or 3rd. The number of places available will vary depending on the bookmaker, exchange and/or number of runners or entrants.

Different Each Way Terms

Not all horse races and sports will offer the same terms. In horse racing it depends on the number of runners and the type of race. The place fraction is either 1/4 or 1/5, and the number of places is normally from 2 to 4.

For other sports it can vary a lot. In some tournaments like Tennis the terms may be 1/2 1,2 meaning your only covered for a losing finalist. In golf the terms may be 1/4 1,2,3,4,5 meaning that finishing in the first 5 will get you something (if you back each way)

Lay Betting

A lay bet is a bet that something wont win.

So if you lay a horse and the horse loses = you win

If you lay a horse and the horse wins = you lose

This type of bet has grown significantly in popularity over the last few years with the growth of betting exchanges in particular. The way returns on lay bets are calculated is basically the mirror image of the win bet - as if you are laying a bet, then someone else has the corresponding win bet.

Lay Bet Example
You lay TBones Trouble at 3-1 in the 2.10 at Southwell. You set a stake of €420 being the amount you could lose if the horse wins

As you are giving odds of 3-1, and you have set your max loss at €420, this means you can take bets of €140, because if the horse wins you'd need to pay winning of 3x€140=€420.

So if the horse loses - you don't have to pay out - so you keep the stakes of €140 - i.e. you win €140

But if the horse wins - you have to pay out 3 x €140 = €420 so you lose €420

As you can probably see from the above your odds were the "upside down odds" of the odds you layed. In this case you layed at 3/1 meaning your odds were 1/3
If you lay at 10-1 your odds are 1/10
If you lay an odds on shot like at 1/5, your odds are 5/1

Other Types of Bet

Win, EW and Lay are the three core bet types but there are a few variations on these:

A Double consists of 1 bet involving 2 selections in different events. Both must be successful to get a return.

A Treble consists of 1 bet involving 3 selections in different events. All must be successful to get a return.

The same principle applies to other accumulators with more selections.

For explanations on types of bet which are commonly used for horse racing such as a forecast, a Tricast, a Trixie, a Patent, a Lucky 15,Canadian, Heinz, Goliath and many more, take our Horse Racing Bets lesson.

There are many types of bet which are commonly used in football betting such as First Goal Score, Total Goals, Correct Score and many more. We explain these type of bet in our Types of Football Bet Lesson.