what does sp mean in horse racing odds

SP, or starting price, in horse racing odds, represents the official odds at the start of the race. It’s typically displayed as a fraction, such as 2/1 or 5/2. The first number in the fraction represents the amount you’ll win for every dollar wagered, while the second number is the amount you must wager to win one dollar. For instance, with odds of 2/1, you’ll receive $2 for every $1 wagered, meaning a $10 bet would yield $20. The starting price is determined by the pari-mutuel wagering system, where bets are pooled and odds are adjusted based on the amount wagered on each horse. SP odds are typically lower than morning line odds, which are available before the race and reflect early betting patterns.

Price (SP) in UK and American Horse Racing

In horse racing, SP (Starting Price) refers to the final agreed-upon odds offered by bookmakers just as a race begins. It serves as the standard against which winning bets are settled.

UK Horse Racing

* Fixed odds are set by bookmakers before a race, and SP reflects the best odds available.
* Bookmakers may offer different prices, but the most favorable odds at the time of the race start become the SP.
* SP odds are widely published and used as a reference point for race results.

American Horse Racing

* Starting prices are not standardized, and bookmakers may offer varying odds even after the race begins.
* The SP is typically the odds at which the majority of bets were placed, but it may differ from the price taken by individual bettors.
* SP is less commonly used in American racing due to the lack of fixed odds.

CountryType of OddsRole of SP
UKFixedIndustry standard for settling winning bets
USVaryingReference point for race results, but not always used for settlement

Understanding Starting Price (SP) in Australian Horse Betting

Starting Price (SP) is the final odds offered on a horse just before the race begins. It’s significant in Australian horse betting because it determines the payouts for winning wagers.

How SP Works

  • SP is calculated by a betting exchange based on the total amount of money bet on each horse.
  • The horse with the most money bet on it will have the lowest SP (e.g., $1.50).
  • Horses with less money bet on them will have higher SPs (e.g., $5.00 or $10.00).

Reading an SP Table

HorseStarting Price
Verry Elleegant$3.00
I’m Thunderstruck$5.00

In this example, Godolphin has the lowest SP ($2.00), indicating that it has the most money bet on it and is the favorite. Zaaki has the highest SP ($4.00), suggesting that it has fewer backers.

Significance of SP

  • Determines the payout for winning bets (e.g., a $10 bet on Godolphin at SP 2.00 will return $20).
  • Provides an indication of how much support a horse has.
  • Used as a benchmark for calculating other betting options, such as place and exacta.

Tips for Using SP

  • Consider the SP as a guide, not a guarantee.
  • Research each horse’s form and recent performances.
  • Monitor the fluctuations in SP leading up to the race.
  • Remember that SP can change rapidly in the final moments before the start.

## SP in Horse Racing Odds

**SP (Starting Price)**

SP refers to the final odds of a horse in a race, calculated based on the bets placed right before the race starts. It takes into account all the fluctuations and adjustments made by bettors throughout the betting process. SP is an essential factor in determining potential winnings.

### Using SP to Calculate Potential Winnings

To calculate your potential winnings based on SP, you need to:

* **Know your stake:** The amount you wagered on the horse.
* **Divide the SP by 100:** This gives you the decimal representation of the SP.
* **Multiply the decimal SP by your stake:** This calculates your potential winnings.


* You wager $10 on a horse with an SP of 4.0.
* 4.0 / 100 = 0.04
* 0.04 x $10 = $0.40 (potential winnings)

### Variations in SP

* **Fixed Odds:** Set by bookmakers before the race and remain the same until the start of the race.
* **Fluctuating Odds:** Change based on the amount of money wagered on each horse, reflecting the probability of the horse winning.
* **Ante-Post Odds:** Published even before the race card is released, based on initial speculation and information about the horses.

### SP vs. Ante-Post Odds

While SP odds are calculated just before the race, Ante-Post odds are set well in advance. SP odds usually provide a more accurate representation of the horse’s chances of winning as they reflect the latest betting patterns.

SP OddsAnte-Post Odds
Calculated before the race startsSet before the race card is released
Reflects the latest betting patternsBased on initial speculation and information
Usually more accurateLess accurate due to time difference


* Pay attention to the SP odds as they help you make more informed betting decisions.
* Use the formula mentioned above to calculate potential winnings before placing your bets.

SP vs. Fixed Odds Betting in Horse Racing

In the world of horse racing, understanding the different types of odds is crucial for informed betting. One of the most common types is starting price (SP), which refers to the odds offered at the start of a race. However, there’s also fixed-odds betting, where the odds remain constant throughout the betting process.

Pros and Cons of SP vs. Fixed-Odds Betting

Fixed-Odds Betting


  • Offers stability and guaranteed payouts
  • Allows for pre-planning and risk management


  • Can limit potential winnings if odds drift in your favor
  • May offer less flexibility in bet types and markets

Starting Price (SP) Betting


  • Provides the opportunity for higher payouts if odds drift up
  • Offers more flexibility and betting options


  • Can result in lower payouts if odds shorten
  • May introduce an element of uncertainty and risk

Comparison Table

Fixed OddsStarting Price (SP)
Odds StabilityFixed throughout the betting processFluctuates until the start of the race
Potential PayoutsGuaranteed, but may limit winningsCan be higher if odds drift
Risk LevelLower, due to fixed oddsHigher, due to potential fluctuations
FlexibilityLimited bet types and marketsMore flexibility in bet types and markets


Ultimately, the choice between SP and fixed-odds betting depends on your betting style and risk tolerance. If you prefer stability and guaranteed payouts, fixed-odds betting is a good option. However, if you’re willing to take on more risk for the potential of higher rewards, SP betting might be a better choice.
Cheers for sticking with us, folks! Now you’re all set to decipher those SP odds like a pro at the track. Remember, the more you practice, the better you’ll get at predicting the winners. So, keep coming back for more racing updates, tips, and odds. We’ll be here, ready to help you dominate the betting game!