what is a round robin bet in horse racing

In horse racing, a round robin bet is a type of wager in which multiple horses are selected, and all possible combinations of those horses are bet. For instance, in a three-horse round robin, there are three possible two-horse combinations. The bettor would place six bets, covering all combinations of the three horses to finish in the first and second position. Round robin bets can also be made for three horses to finish in the first, second, and third positions, and so on. This type of bet can be more expensive than traditional win, place, or show bets, but it can also increase the chances of winning.
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Round Robin Betting in Horse Racing Explained

Round robin betting is a type of wager that allows bettors to combine multiple selections from different races into a single bet. This can be a great way to increase your chances of winning while also limiting your risk.

Advantages of Round Robin Betting

  • Increased chances of winning: Round robin betting allows you to cover multiple outcomes in a single bet, which can increase your chances of winning compared to placing separate bets on each outcome.
  • Reduced risk: By combining multiple bets into a round robin, you can reduce your overall risk compared to placing separate bets on each outcome. This is because if one of your selections loses, you will still have other selections in the round robin that can win.
  • Convenience: Round robin betting is a convenient way to place multiple bets on different races. Instead of placing separate bets on each outcome, you can group them all together into a single bet.

Here is an example of a round robin bet:

Race 1Horse A
Race 2Horse B
Race 3Horse C

This round robin bet would include the following six bets:

  • Horse A to win Race 1
  • Horse A to win Race 2
  • Horse A to win Race 3
  • Horse B to win Race 1
  • Horse B to win Race 2
  • Horse B to win Race 3

If any of these six bets win, the bettor will receive a payout. The amount of the payout will depend on the odds of the winning selection and the number of bets in the round robin.

Disadvantages of Round Robin Betting

While round robin betting offers the potential for big wins, it also comes with some disadvantages.

High Risk

  • Round robin betting involves placing multiple bets, each with its own risk.
  • If even one leg of the bet loses, the entire bet is lost, increasing the risk compared to single bets.


  • Round robin betting can be complex and challenging, especially for beginners.
  • It requires careful calculation to determine the number of bets and the potential payout.

Lower Payouts

  • Round robin bets offer lower payouts compared to straight bets.
  • The more legs added to the bet, the smaller the potential payout for each winning leg.

Limited Win Probability

  • With each additional leg added, the probability of winning all legs decreases.
  • This makes it more challenging to hit a significant win with round robin betting.

Larger Bankroll Requirement

  • Round robin betting requires a larger bankroll compared to single bets.
  • The number of bets placed and the potential payouts determine the bankroll size needed.

Variations of Round Robin Bets

Round robin bets can be varied in several ways to suit different betting strategies and preferences. Here are some common variations:

  • Round Robin of 2: This is the simplest round robin bet, involving only two selections. Each selection is paired with the other to create a single bet.
  • Round Robin of 3: This variation involves three selections, creating three bets: (1) A to B to C, (2) B to C to A, and (3) C to A to B.
  • Round Robin of 4: With four selections, a round robin bet creates six bets: (1) A to B to C to D, (2) B to C to D to A, (3) C to D to A to B, (4) D to A to B to C, (5) A to C to D to B, and (6) B to D to A to C.
  • Double Round Robin: This variation combines two round robin bets together. For example, a double round robin of 3 and 4 would create six bets: (1) A to B to C and (2) D to E to F, (3) B to C to A and (4) D to E to F, (5) C to A to B and (6) D to E to F.

The number of bets in a round robin bet can be calculated using the formula (n-1)n-1, where n is the number of selections. For example, a round robin of 4 will create 6 bets: (4-1)4-1 = 33 = 6.

The table below summarizes the different round robin variations and their respective number of bets:

Number of SelectionsNumber of Bets

Well, there you have it, folks! You’re now armed with the knowledge of round robin betting, a powerful tool for maximizing your chances of winning at the track. Don’t be shy, give it a try next time you’re feeling lucky. Remember, betting on horse races is a game of skill and chance, so don’t be discouraged if you don’t win every time. The key is to have fun and enjoy the thrill of the chase. Thanks for reading, and be sure to check back soon for more tips and insights into the world of horse racing.