what’s a double in horse racing

In the exciting world of horse racing, a double refers to a bet that combines two separate bets into one wager. With a double bet, you’re essentially predicting that two specific horses will win their respective races. The first horse you select is called the “first leg,” and the second horse is known as the “second leg.” If both of your chosen horses cross the finish line first in their races, you’ve hit the double and you collect a payout. However, if either of the horses fails to win their race, the entire double bet is considered a loss.

What’s a Double in Horse Racing?

A double in horse racing is a bet that involves picking the winners of two consecutive races, usually at the same track and on the same day. Doubles are a type of exotic bet, and they offer the potential for higher payouts than straight bets.

Types of Doubles

There are two main types of doubles:

  • Win-Win Doubles: In a win-win double, both selections must win their races. This is the most difficult type of double to hit, but it also offers the highest payouts.
  • Place-Place Doubles: In a place-place double, both selections must finish in the top two positions in their races. This is a less difficult type of double to hit than a win-win double, but it also offers lower payouts.

In addition to win-win and place-place doubles, there are also a number of other double bets that can be made, such as:

* Win-Place Doubles
* Place-Show Doubles
* Show-Show Doubles
* Boxed Doubles

A boxed double is a bet that covers all possible combinations of two selections. For example, a boxed win-win double on horses 1 and 2 would cover the following four combinations:

Horse 1Horse 2

Boxed doubles offer the highest potential payouts, but they also cost more to place.

What is a Double in Horse Racing?

In horse racing, a double is a bet that involves picking the winners of two races in a row. Different racetracks have different rules regarding the order in which the races must take place for the bet to be considered a double, but typically, they must take place on the same day.

To place a double bet, you need to select one horse in each of the two races that you think will win. If both of your selections are correct, you will win the bet. The odds of winning a double depend on the odds of each individual horse winning its race. For example, if the odds of your selections are 3-1 and 4-1, the odds of winning the double are 12-1, or 13-1 with a standard takeout.

Odds and Payouts

The odds of winning a double are determined by the odds of each individual horse winning its race. The lower the odds of a horse winning, the higher the odds of the double. The payout for a double is also determined by the odds of the winners. The higher the odds, the higher the payout.

  • Example: If you place a double bet on two horses with odds of 3-1 and 4-1, the odds of winning the double are 12-1.
  • If the double wins, you will be paid out $13 for every $1 you bet.

Table of Odds and Payouts

| Odds of Winner 1 | Odds of Winner 2 | Odds of Double | Payout |
| 1-1 | 1-1 | 1-1 | $2 |
| 2-1 | 2-1 | 4-1 | $5 |
| 3-1 | 3-1 | 12-1 | $13 |
| 4-1 | 4-1 | 20-1 | $21 |
| 5-1 | 5-1 | 30-1 | $31 |

What is a Double in horse betting?

Horse race betting is the practice of predicting the order in which multiple racehorses will complete a race, and then backing the predictions with a sum of money. A double is a type of bet in which the bettor predicts two selections to win their race. If both selections win, the bet pays out.

The bet type is most often associated with harness (trotting) and greyhound (dog) race formats. Most harness and greyhound venues offer double pools, which pay out if two nominated selections finish first and second.

Calculating the return on a double bet

The return is calculated as follows:

Base amount: The amount bet
Winning dividend of each selection: The dividend paid for a win bet on each selection
Takeout percentage: This is the percentage deducted from each winning pool in order to cover the track’s overeads and to generate profit.

The net dividend is calculated by taking the product of the base amount and the two winning dividends, and then subtracting the takeout percentage.


Net dividend = (Base amount) x (First leg dividend x Second leg dividend) x (1 – Takeout %)


If the bettor bets $10 on the double, the first leg of the double pays $5 and the second leg of the double pays $4, and the takeout percentage is 10%, the net dividend is:

$$10 x (5 x 4) x (1 – 0.10) = $18$$

What Is a Double in Horse Racing?

A double is a type of bet in horse racing where you select two horses to win two consecutive races. The races can be on the same day or on different days.

Advantages of a Double

  • Higher potential payout: Doubles offer the potential for a higher payout than single bets, as you are combining two selections.
  • Increased excitement: Doubles add an element of excitement to horse racing, as you have to wait for the outcome of multiple races.
  • Can be used to hedge bets: Doubles can be used to hedge bets on a single race. For example, if you have two horses you like in the same race, you can place a double on both of them. This way, you are guaranteed a return if either of your horses wins.

Disadvantages of a Double

  • Lower chance of winning: Doubles are more difficult to win than single bets, as you have to select two horses to win. This means that your chances of winning are lower.
  • Potentially higher risk: Doubles can be more risky than single bets, as you are putting more money at stake. This means that you could lose more money if your bets do not come in.
  • Possible disappointment: If one of your horses wins and the other loses, you will only receive half of the potential payout. This can be disappointing, as you may have expected to win a larger amount.

Payouts for Doubles

The payout for a double depends on the odds of each horse and the amount of money you bet. The following table shows the potential payouts for a $2 double:

Odds of Each HorsePayout
2/1, 2/1$12
3/1, 3/1$18
4/1, 4/1$24
5/1, 5/1$30
6/1, 6/1$36

As you can see, the payout for a double increases as the odds of each horse increase.

Well, there you have it, folks! Now you know what a double is in horse racing. Next time you’re at the track, give it a try and see if you can find a double that pays out big. Thanks for reading, and be sure to come back soon for more horse racing tips and insights.