Horse racing is known for its popular multi-race wagers. These include the Pick 3, Pick 4 and Pick 5. A series of consecutive winners can yield lucrative payouts and hours of entertainment.
Two strategies are common among handicappers who structure multi-race wagers. The first involves looking for a vulnerable favorite to place a bet against. This increases your chances of winning a large ticket. Another involves finding a standout runner that seems certain of winning a leg. This allows you to “single” the horse and reduces costs.
Multi-Race Betting: What, How, and Why
Every North American racetrack offers multiple race betting. Pick 3 and the double are available on a rolling basis. This means that you can play them in any of the three-race sequences on the card at most tracks. The track may offer the pick 4 once or twice per day, depending on their betting menu. However, the pick 4 or pick 5 are usually limited to one 5- or 6-race sequence each day.
These bets are briefly explained below:
Double: Choose the winners of two races consecutively
Choose 3: Pick winners from three races consecutively
Choose 4: Pick winners from four races consecutively
Pick 5: Choose winners from five races consecutively
Pick 6: Choose winners from six races consecutively
Let’s take the example of pick 3. Picks 3 can be found at most tracks on a 50 cent minimum base wager. Let’s assume we play a pick 3 at Churchill Downs, in races 3-5. We believe the 2-horse (7-horse), 7-horse (9-horse) all have a good chance of winning in race 3. So we add them to our ticket. To create a ticket like this, we go about picking our horses and the odds we like in races 4 and 5.
Race 3: 2,7.9
Race 4: 1,8
Race 5: 4,6,9 and 11,11
We haven’t pinpointed any races in this example but we have put together a ticket that represents our opinion of which horses might win. There are three horses on the first leg, two more in the second and four more in the third. It is easy to calculate the cost of such tickets. For $24, we multiply 3x2x4 Then, we take $24 and multiply it by 50 cents minimum base bet. Our hypothetical ticket will cost only $12.
How to Bet Multi-Races Wagers
- Register for your online racebook
- Click horses
- Choose the type of bet
- For each leg, enter the horses you wish
- Enjoy the action!
Rules of thumb and suggestions
It is always a good idea to play the best bet for your bankroll. I recommend focusing on the pick 3 and double for smaller players who have a budget of $5-$100 per race day. If you are more experienced in picking 4 or 5, expect to lose most of the time. These bets require a greater tolerance for risk due to the amount of capital required and the skill required. My money is that the pick 6 will always be a popular choice, but it has been losing popularity since the introduction of the pick 5.Last Updated on November 18, 2021