There is no other sport quite like horse racing, and the surge of adrenaline watching and betting on it captivates the attention of people from all corners of the globe. From a basic flutter and beyond, horse races offer an abundance of betting opportunities that can measure up to the requirements of punters regardless of their level of skill and knowledge.

If gambling enthusiasts have already become familiar with the basic horse racing bet types and are looking to diversify their betting session or merely want to add a bit of thrill, they tend to direct their attention toward exotic bets.

Whether you are a total novice at horse race betting or have ample experience, you should have at least a basic understanding of the various exotic horse racing bet types. The way these wager types work is not that easy to grasp, especially for newcomers to horse race betting, but the juicy payouts exotic bets offer is what jumps out at most gambling enthusiasts.

Let’s take an in-depth look at the exotic betting opportunities horse racing offers and how each wager type actually works.

What Are Horse Racing Exotic Bets

When punters are determined to move beyond the traditional horse racing bets, they will undoubtedly not be left without options because the choice of exotic wagers is indeed great. Even if you are a rookie in wagering on horse races, the chances are that you have heard about exotic betting or the handsome payouts such bets offer, at the least.

In simple terms, all non-straight horse race bets fall into the category of exotic bets, which is to say that aside from win, place, and show bets, all other wager types are considered exotic ones. Exotic bets might be exceptionally challenging for newcomers to horse racing to win because their outcome is usually determined over the span of several races. Yet, there are also exotic bets that are settled within a single race, which is exactly the case with the daily double and the pick 3 and beyond.

Most of the exotic horse racing bet types can lead to some enormous payouts, and in an attempt to chase these massive returns, many punters tend to focus heavily on such bet types. By contrast, straight or traditional horse race bets do not pay off that much, but they are not that hard bets to hit.

Horse Racing Exotic Bet Types

The variety of bets that fall under the exotic banner is indeed large, and while some wager types are more straightforward, others are more complex, which renders them more suitable for seasoned bettors. Another thing punters should take into account while making exotic bets is how much such wagers will cost them as, on some occasions, such bets might eat up a considerable share of their bankroll.


When exotic horse racing bets are concerned, exctas are without a doubt among the best-known options. Placing an exacta bet means that gambling aficionados are required to correctly predict the first two runners in the official order of finish.

Even though correctly predicting the runners that will take first and second position in the race is rather tough, gambling enthusiasts will have a better chance of hitting such wagers in comparison with all other exotic bets. Thus, exacta bets offer the best winnability-payout ratio than any other exotic horse race bet. What punters should bear in mind, however, is that the payout winning exacta bets will award will depend on the amount they have staked per selection.

Thus, if we suppose that you want to make a straight exacta bet on horses #2 and #5, for example, you will get a payout if horse #2 wins the race while horse #5 takes the second position in the official order of finish. In all other cases, you will lose the staked amount.


Trifecta bets also go by the name big triple or triple but on all occasions, making such a bet involves picking the three horses that will take the top three positions in the official order of finish. Naturally, correctly predicting the top three finishers in the race is not enough for trifecta bets to win, as punters should also guess their correct order of finishes.

There are three types of trifecta bets, including straight, trifecta wheel, and trifecta box. Trifecta boxes are easier to win in comparison with straight trifectas because these are several bets that cover all possible finishing orders of the three horses punters have picked. It goes without saying that the greater flexibility gambling aficionados will benefit from has its price, and the amount they will be required to put at a stake will be considerably higher.

Making a trifecta wheel, on the other hand, means that gambling enthusiasts will decide the position in which a horse will finish and then cover all other possible combinations in the field, which results in significantly greater chances of winning.

The high-profit potential of this exotic bet goes to explain why it is so preferred by gambling enthusiasts. In spite of the generous payouts trifecta bets offer, punters should consider that getting that payday will not be a walk in the park.


Superfectas are among the more advanced exotic horse race bets, and in order for punters to win such bets, they need to predict the first four horses that will cross the finish line.

Much like trifectas, superfectas also fall into three major categories, including straight, box, and wheel. Straight superfectas are the ones we described already as punters should pick four of the runners and decide what order they will finish in.

Making a superfecta box bet means that punters will effectively cover all possible superfecta combinations, in which one of the horses they pick takes the first position. Naturally, the more runners contend in the race, the more expensive such bets will be. If they prefer to go for superfecta box betting, gambling aficionados will make a bet, which is made of several straight superfectas.

When compared to the amount staked, the payouts winning superfecta bets might award can be quite generous. As is the case with all other exotic bets, superfectas are hard to get right.

Daily Double

When making a daily double bet, the horses punters will bet on need to perform the way they have predicted in order to get a payout. Therefore, the odds for such bets will be narrower in comparison with bets that are placed on just one horse in a single race.

When compared to the payouts the three traditional bets offer, the daily double undoubtedly provides much more generous returns. If punters want to give this exotic bet a chance, they will be required to select the winners of two races in a row.

When compared to exactas, daily double bets offer a greater number of runners to bet on. In addition to this, the most evenly matched fields are normally the ones bookies offer daily double bets for, which makes it even tougher for punters to make correct predictions.

Thus, making a daily double might seem like pretty much an obvious choice for punters, but what they should not forget is that when the number of horses set up for such exotic wagers is high, making a correct pick will be more challenging. Yet, if such wagers hit, gambling aficionados will be in for handsome returns.

In most cases, gambling aficionados will be allowed to go for early and late daily doubles, but this only depends on the horse race betting platform they have picked.

Pick 3

Pick 3 is yet another bet type we need to get into while discussing the exotic horse racing bets. As the number in the name of this bet type suggests, when placing a pick 3 bet, gambling aficionados will be required to pick the winners of three consecutive races. It is important to note that punters need to make their bet pick prior to the start of the first race they have included in their ticket.

Structuring such bets is not at the least easy, and what gambling aficionados should also take into account is that if they want to successfully handicap pick 3 bets, they need to do this in advance.

Pick 4

When they go for this exotic bet type, gambling aficionados need to structure their tickets around four consecutive races, and once again, they will be required to place their bet prior to the start of the first race in the sequence. Punters should remember that since they will add an extra selection to their tickets, the cost of such exotic wagers will climb higher. Of course, the increased difficulty of such bets is made up for by the more generous returns.

Pick 6

Many bookmakers and tracks go beyond simply offering punters the opportunity to pick the winners in three races in a row, and offer this option for six events as well. Thus, if they get every prediction correct, punters will collect a payout but even if just one selection does not hit, they will lose their original bet.

It goes without saying the risk punters need to take will be greater as the number of correct predictions they need to make increases. Yet, pick 6 bets are the highest paying such wagers, and often, the payouts gambling aficionados might be in for can run into the thousands.

Thus, in order to make risk-averse punters give pick 3 and beyond bets a shot, many sports betting platforms that offer wagering on horse races tend to introduce different attention-grabbing incentives. Most of the time, these come in the form of consolation prizes that are a preset share of the pool.


Quinella wagering is another opportunity horse racing bettors have when they want to build their tickets around two races. In fact, quinella bets are quite similar to exacta bets, but the most outstanding difference is that punters will get a payoff, no matter the order in which the selected horses come in. Additionally, quinella bets pay by the same percentage, no matter which horse will win the race and which will finish second.

One of the main reasons why seasoned bettors tend to steer clear of quinella bets is that normally, the pools for such wagers are considerably smaller when compared to the pools of exacta bets, for example. In addition to this, quinella bets are not that widely available, and finding a track or a bookie which offers this wager type might be somewhat challenging.

Horse Racing Accumulator Bets

Accumulator bets are multi-event horse racing bets that are offered by the sports betting sites that rely on the fixed-odds system. Such bets can be made up of four or more selections that are tied in a single multi-event bet. The most appealing aspect of these bets is that the winnings punters will stand the chance to bag will be rather handsome while the risk will not be that high. Yet, the tricky part about these bets is that they lose even if they miss the mark with just one selection.

Prop Bets

Today, prop bets are gaining traction in a number of sports, horse race betting included. No matter the sport punters will focus on, prop bets will not necessarily deal with the outcome of the specific event. Instead, such bets can come in all shapes and sizes and might have to do with the trainer who will see the most success during the season or the jockey who will win most events, for example.

Please note that prop bets might not be at hand for every race available out there, and on most occasions, such betting opportunities are introduced for some of the major events. Some of the most widely available prop bets include winning margin, Triple Crown winner, and winning starting gate, among others.

Oftentimes, gambling enthusiasts get carried when making pop bets because of their entertainment value, which costs them a considerable share of their bankrolls. Because of this, it is advisable to be choosier if you want to give them a try.

Patent Bets

Patent bets are also among the preferred exotic horse race bets, and in order to make such a bet, gambling aficionados need to select three horses in three different races. Thus, punters will ultimately make three singles, three doubles, and a treble bet, meaning that they will end up placing seven bets. In this way, punters will back all the three horses to win the races and, at the same time, will cover all possible combinations, and in order for them to lock in returns, they will need just one winner.

As punters can see, patent bets offer more security in comparison with most other exotic bets, which is the reason why they are so preferred. Interestingly, such bets are not only available for horse races as they can also be used when betting on football and greyhounds.

Yankee Bets

Yankee bets are another option punters have when they want to go for multiple betting. These exotic wagers cover four events and consist of 11 bets of equal value. The bet types gambling enthusiasts need to add to their Yankee bet include one four-fold accumulator, four trebles, and six doubles. When making such a multi-event bet, bettors will only be offered a payout, given that at least two of the selections their Yankee bet is made of hit. Obviously, going for this bet type means that gambling enthusiasts can make several different bets at once, which results in significantly higher security.

It goes without saying that Yankee bets are quite complicated to make, and before they give such bets a shot, punters should first consider whether their potential returns are worth the risk they need to take. What they should keep in mind is that when compared to some of the other exotic horse racing bet types, Yankee bets offer considerably smaller returns.

Perhaps, the biggest issue of making a Yankee bet is that gambling enthusiasts will not be allowed to stake different amounts on the various selections.

Goliath Bets

It is not exaggerated to say that Goliath bets are among the most complicated exotic horse racing bets because they consist of 247 equal-size bets made on eight selections. The bets a Goliath wager includes are one eight-fold, eight seven-folds, 28 six-folds, 56 five-holds, 70 four-folds, 56 trebles, and 28 doubles.

As was the case with some of the exotic bets we already focused on, Goliath bets will offer a payout if two selections at the least are correct. Still, considering how many bets punters need to include in their Goliath bet, they will need more winning picks in order to turn a profit.

No matter how confident or tentative about their picks punters might be, they will not be allowed to increase or decrease the stake units they will go for when making Goliath bets. In addition to this, picking the right stake unit might be somewhat challenging because punters should make sure that the cost of such bets will not go through the roof and, at the same time, that the smaller multiples will be worth winning.

Canadian Bets

Canadian bets are also known as super Yankee, and are made of 26 selections that cover five events in total. The selections Canadian bets consist of are grouped into ten doubles, ten trebles, five four-folds, and one five-hold. In Canadian bets, a minimum of two of the selections should be correct ones in order for punters to get a payout. If the correct picks are more, punters’ payout will rise sharply.

In fact, Canadian bets are often used as an alternative to accumulator bets because these bets offer a return if at least two of the added selections hit and not if all picks are correct. One more reason why gambling enthusiasts might be keen on giving this bet type a shot is that they are saved the hassle of assembling this multi-event bet as all they will be required to do is pick the horses they want to bet on and then select Canadian bet from the options that are featured in their betslip.

In spite of the positives of making a Canadian bet, some gambling aficionados avoid these exotic bets because of the lack of flexibility since the unit stake they need to stick to should be the same for all selections.

Lucky 15, 31, and 63

Lucky 15 is an exotic bet, which features 15 same-valued bets that cover four different events. Going for such a multiple horse race bet means that punters will make six doubles, one four-fold accumulator, four singles, and four trebles. Unlike the above-mentioned exotic wagers, with lucky 15 bets, one correct pick is enough for punters to get a payout. The trebles, doubles, and the accumulator bets guarantee that the returns gambling aficionados will collect will increase considerably with each new winner. Once again, tailoring the unit stake will not be an option if punters want to make this exotic bet.

Lucky 31 works in a similar manner, and it is made of 31 bets equal in size that cover five events. Thus, a lucky 31 bet will consist of a five-fold accumulator, five four-folds, ten trebles, ten doubles, and five singles. If punters fancy this exotic bet, they should keep their fingers crossed for at least one of these bets to hit to get a payout.

Lucky 63 bets are made of 63 equally large bets on selections in six different races. Going for this wager type means that punters will ultimately place one six-fold accumulator, six five-folds, 15 four-folds, 20 trebles, 15 doubles, and six singles. As punters can see, lucky 63 bets are more complicated when compared to lucky 15 and lucky 31 bets. Yet, once again, the only requirement for such bets to offer a payout is to ensure that at least one of the selections hit.

Round Robin Bets

A Round Robin bet in horse racing is an exotic wager, which features ten bets placed on three selections. The individual bets such wagers are made of include one treble, three doubles, and three single-stakes about bets, with the latter containing two bets within each other. Such wagers might not appeal to beginners in horse race betting as they have some complicated aspects. It is a complete-coverage multiple bet, and punters will win, on the condition that at least one of their selections is a correct one.

What Are Partial Exotic Horse Race Bets

Partial exotic bets are merely multi-event wagers, the cost of which is below the $2 threshold. Punters who are keen on making exotic wagers might come across sports betting sites and tracks that offer $0,50 trifectas, $0,10 superfectas, or $1 exactas, for example.

Even though these might be the costs of some of the exotic wagers, punters should keep in mind that, when placing their wagers, they will still be required to stake enough money in order to reach that threshold. In fact, this might work to the advantage of punters because, ultimately, they will end up playing several combinations at the same time, which might increase their chances of bagging a payout.

Thus, if we suppose that gambling enthusiasts prefer to go for a $0,10 superfecta bet, they can effectively cover 20 different combinations in order to ensure that they will fulfill the minimum bet requirement.

What Does Boxing Exotic Bets Mean

While wagering on horse races, punters will be allowed to box their bets, provided that they are about to place an exacta, trifecta, or superfecta bet. As gambling aficionados might already know, with these three exotic bets, they will be required to predict the correct order in which the horses will finish the race, thus rendering it more difficult to make a decision. When boxing these exotic wagers, punters will effectively deal with this difficulty because they will cover all possible combinations of selections.

The main thing punters should understand about boxing their wagers is that they are a great option for punters who are interested in exotic betting but also want to increase their chances of making correct picks. It goes without saying that the increased odds of winning have their price as gambling aficionados will be required to make a larger stake.

Thus, if we suppose that punters want to place a trifecta bet, their bet will be settled as a winning one, provided that they guess the horses that will take the first top three positions in the exact order. If punters succeed in doing so, they will be in for handsome returns, but the significantly increased risk should not be overlooked either.

If punters do not mind putting some extra money at a stake, they should pick the three horses they think will perform best and box their bet in order to ensure that they will get a payout, no matter the order in which these runners cross the finish line. Assuming that punters have picked horses 2, 3, and 4, the possible combinations will look like this:

  • 2, 3, 4
  • 2, 4, 3
  • 3, 2, 4
  • 3, 4, 2
  • 4, 2, 3
  • 4, 3, 2

In this case, gambling enthusiasts can be sure that they will get a payout, provided that horses 2, 3, and 4 finish in the top three positions, and most importantly, no matter the order they will appear in. No matter how appealing boxing these exotic wagers might seem, punters should bear in mind that if the cost of a regular trifecta bet is $2, for example, its cost will jump to $12 because the number of covered outcomes increases to six. Punters will also see how the price of boxed exotic wagers increases if they decide to add more horses to their picks.

How Can Punters Key Exotic Horse Race Bets

While making exotic horse race bets, gambling aficionados will also have the opportunity to key their multiple bets. When keying their exotic wagers, punters will be required to pick one of the runners in the race as the key to win, and depending on their preferences, they might add two or more selections. The order in which the additional selections will cross the finish line is irrelevant.

In fact, keying exotic bets has a lot in common with boxing them, but the biggest benefit of picking the key runner in the race is that in this way, gambling aficionados will reduce the combinations they will be required to cover. Needless to say, this will make such bets much more affordable when compared to boxed bets.

If we suppose that punters want to key their trifecta bet, and the horse they want to select as a key is #5, while the other selections they have picked are #1, #3, #6, and #7, they will get a payout, provided that horse #5 wins the race, and two of the other selected bets take the second and third positions, respectively. Remember that while keying exotic bets, punters will lose the staked amount if the keyed horse does not take the first position in the official order of finish.

If we suppose that punters box a $2 trifecta bet with four selections, the amount they will be required to put at a stake will jump to $48. Still, if the option to key one runner over the other three selections is what gambling enthusiasts prefer, the cost of their wager will be $12.

Wheeling Horse Racing Exotic Bets

While placing exotic bets, many punters prefer to use the so-called wheeling technique, and depending on their preferences, they can go for full and partial wheels. When full wheels are concerned, punters will be required to pick at least one key runner in the race and then fill out all other top positions by selecting all remaining contenders. Thus, if we suppose that gambling aficionados want to make a $2 exacta wheel #5 and all, this means that horse #5 should come first, while all other horses can come second.

If punters decide to wheel their exotic bet only partially, they will exclude some of the runners in the race. This is how a partial wheel might look like:

$2 Exacta Wheel 2 and 4, 6, and 7.

This means that, in practice, gambling enthusiasts will create three exacta bets, or 2-4, 2-6, and 2-7. As punters can see, by wheeling their wagers, they will effectively create several exotic wagers without putting too much of their funds at a stake. is a media website dedicated to sports news and reviews of the most popular sports betting sites. Here you will find comprehensive guides on where to bet on football, tennis, NBA, NFL and information about the most popular betting deposit methods.