What is Win Place Show?

These are probably the easiest bets to understand, and with it, comes various levels of risk for the bettor.


There is nothing complicated here; your horse has to win the race in order to cash the bet. The odds that you see for the horse are the win odds. Example: Say you put $2 (lowest denomination in most jurisdictions; some do allow for a $1 bet) on a horse who is going off at 4/1. If that horse wins, you will receive $10-$10.80 (original $2 back plus $8-$8.80).


In order for you to win this bet, your horse must finish first or second. It doesn’t matter if the horse is first or second, as it is just one payout. Most tracks will not show you the odds on this, as it is dependent on who the other horse is that finishes in the top 2.


The least risky of the three bets, if you place this bet, you will cash a ticket as long as your horse finishes in the top 3. Like the place bet, it makes no difference in what position your horse finishes in; as long as it’s the top 3, you win. You will not see odds as the payout is based on who the other 2 horses are that place in the top 3.

The Win bet is the only one that is guaranteed to be offered in a betting race. Place and Show betting may not be offered if there is a short field of horses (5 or less) or if there is a dominant horse in a field, and the track thinks they would lose money because of people betting large amounts, in proportion to the total pool, for one horse to finish in the top 2 (Place) or top 3 (Show). Most tracks will show the pools for each of these bets.

If you see a horse that at low odds (1/5, 1/2, 1/9), you may want to check the show pools and see how much was bet on that horse. A common phenomenon, known as “bridge-jumping”, occurs when an individual places a large bet ($10,000 or higher) on a horse to show. This large bets makes up about 95% or higher of the pool. This is usually done at smaller tracks, since they don’t get as much traffic. With a minimum payout of either 5 or 10 cents on the dollar for a winning bet (differs by track), some will see this as a quick way to make a few hundred or few thousand dollars. However, if that horse doesn’t make the money, the payouts can be huge. In this event, a show bet on any horse that finishes in the top 3 will usually pay higher than a win or place bet.

What are you waiting for? Get started placing your horse racing bets now, and be sure to take advantage of the Win/Place/Show feature that is offered. You will love this type of bet, and find that it is nearly addictive.


How to bet on Horses
There are multiple different horse races to bet on, and many different types of bets offered also. We are here to help explain more in-depth the different types of horse racing bets, and explain how they work.
What is a Pick 3?
These multi-race wagers, such as the Pick 3, are becoming a popular way to bet the races. It can allow for a greater value as it usually takes about an hour for 3 races to occur in.
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