HOME PAGE ABOUT US CONTACT US


SPORTSBOOKS ONLINE

sportsbook reviews
sportsbook bonuses
reduced juice betting
sportsbook directory
sportsbook ratings
sportsbook guide

SPORTS HANDICAPPING

sports betting tips
sports matchups
scores & odds archives
half point chart

HOW TO GAMBLE

poker articles
sports betting articles
horse racing articles
gambling articles
sports betting blog

SPORTS BETTING ONLINE

sports sites
gambling sites
sports betting sites
wagering sites

WEBMASTERS

advertising
affiliate programs
submit site
EXACTAS OFFER BETTER VALUE

Exactas Offer Better Value
by Greg Melikov

I knew a turf writing handicapper who refused to bet on favorites when the odds dropped below 3-1. The late Jack Slater, who has a stakes named for him at Gulfstream Park, did pretty well.

However, my Miami Herald colleague for many years only bet to win. I realized that if you want to gain more lucrative rewards, going the exotic wagering route is a must tactic.

The main reason: Exacta wagering pools offer more value than straight betting pools since there’s plenty of foolish cash going into quite a few races.

I see no harm including favorites in exactas, trifectas and Pick 3s, 4s, 5s, 6s, etc. But I always embrace at least one longshot in exactas and trifectas.

My favorite wager is the exacta -- a combination bet requiring horses to finish one-two. I usually follow several rules:

Seldom play favorites below 2-1 on top. If you do, throw out the second betting choice because both hardly ever run one-two. I researched this several years ago and found that’s especially true among 2-year-olds.

At some tracks that run quite a few races for juveniles, I found one of the top two choices wins more than their share.

If you box a pair at 2-1 and 3-1 in an eight-horse field, the $2 exacta payoff with the lower odds on top would be about $26 and only $7 higher if reversed.

Sometimes you can include overbet favorites 2-1 or below on the bottom while putting any overlays or longshots on top. The payoffs can be generous.

For example, if a 10-1 shot tops a 2-1 horse, the exacta returns $80. With the 2-1 horse on top, the payoff is $30 lower.

Rarely combine pairs of longshots 10-1 and up, but you can box two horses from 3-1 to 8-1 if at least one is an overlay. Two longshots at higher odds infrequently finish one-two. The rate of return is a losing proposition in the long run.

Say you box 3-1 and 8-1 horses: Lower odds on top would return $193 while higher odds would only produce $15 more.

Never box four or more horses no matter the odds. It’s smarter to use those four horses in a Pick 3 or 4 to give you a better chance to cash in.

There are as many exacta-wagering strategies as there are handicapping professionals. For example, several experts recommend betting your selection to win and also keying the two logical choices on top.

Many handicappers look for a shaky favorite and put two horses on top. When I follow that strategy, I make sure one is a price horse.

An interesting set of rules that appears on several racing websites advises:

Pick two races a day at your favorite tracks and look for contests with a minimum of eight horses while 10 the ideal field has 10 runners.

Don’t play the race if the favorite is bet down to 8-5 or less.

Find races that lack a heavy favorite because they produce generous rewards.

Keep an eye on the tote board, take notes and don’t wait to the last minute to place your bets.

I subscribe to that last rule wholeheartedly.


5Dimes Sportsbook