Each-way betting: the definitive guide for horse racing punters

August 14, 2020 | By More

Each-way betting is popular in horse racing because most races have many possible outcomes. Basically, the each-way bet is for the win AND the place. It’s like having two bets on a single ticket. If you win, you receive BOTH the win dividend and the place dividend. If the selection runs 2nd or 3rd, you receive only the place dividend. It’s a sure way of getting a return even if the selection loses, but still manages to run a place.

For horses at a longer price, the place dividend is more than enough to cover both components of the bet. However, for shorter priced runners, the place dividend will not suffice. An each-way bet usually provides only minimal value when the horse is one of the favoured runners. That is, the dividend on the place bet is insufficient to cover costs.

Why bet each-way?

There are many ways to win on horse racing, however regular punters like to bet each-way because they feel it is a type of insurance on the bet. If the horse fails to win, at least they have the possibility of getting most, if not all, their investment back in the form of the place dividend. Of course, if it doesn’t hit the frame at all, then their bet stays in the bookie’s bag.

The main reason people bet each-way is because they may lack confidence in the horse winning the race. If they thought it was a sure thing, they would bet straight-out on the win only. They hope for the horse to win, of course. However, there is also significant likelihood that their selection may lose. This way they can at least cover the losses if the horse manages to finish in the placings.

The question the punter needs to ask himself..

Is it better value to bet each-way or to bet on one or two other horses that may defeat the horse in question?

Let’s say the selection runs second or third. The win component of the bet loses and only the place dividend returned. However, if you’re lucky enough to have the winner in a separate bet, it may result in a better financial outcome. Which bet you make depends on analysis of the race. You may be sure that the winner will come from a select few horses. In this case, it may be more worthwhile to bet all three for the win, perhaps using a staking plan. Another way to boost your each-way betting strategy is to consider betting a few longshots for the place only.

How to place an each-way bet

Each-way bets are placed online, just like any other bet type. The first thing to do is join a reputable online betting agency. We strongly suggest you to join our corporate partner Unibet as they not only provide a full suite of products for the horse racing punter but also consistently offer the best odds. Joining up takes just a couple of minutes:


Make a deposit into your betting account and you’re ready to bet.

Click through to the race meeting and jump on the particular race in which you’d like to try your luck. After making your selection, simply click on the EW button (next to win and place) to place your bet. Enter the amount you wish to bet. This “stake” is on the win with an equivalent amount on the place. Thus, the total of the bet is double what you enter here. You’ll see this clearly under “Slip Total”. The total amount will be deducted from your balance. When you’re happy with your bet selections in the betting slip, just press “Place Bets” and start cheering!

How are each-way odds calculated?

The odds for the Win component of the bet are the same as the starting price odds. Odds for the place bet are calculated from the total place pool. It’s usually in the realms of 1/4 to 1/5 the win bet odds. If a horse is showing a decimal price of $9, it is the equivalent of the fractional price 8-1. The ¼ odds for the place would be 2-1, or $3 in decimal.

In the old days of fractional odds, making an each-way bet meant that you have the horse at the win odds and also at the place odds, usually one quarter of the win odds. For example, if the horse starts at 8-1, you would have each-way odds of 8-1 the win and 2-1 the place. Nowadays, odds are calculated from separate win and place pools but the breakdown is usually between 1/4 and 1/5 of the win odds.

Bear in mind that if you choose to bet each-way, half of your total bet goes on the win and half on the place. In other words, a $10 total bet is divided into $5 Win and $5 Place bets. In this case, punters usually say, “I’ll have $5 each-way on Winx” which costs the punter a total of $10. That’s $5 on the win and $5 on the place.

Below is a handy each-way bet calculator. Simply enter the amount you wish to bet each-way and input he current odds.

The calculator provides the approximate return when the selection wins, runs a place or is, sadly, unplaced.

When to consider making an each-way bet

Seasoned punters often speak of “each-way odds” but what are they referring to? “Each-way odds” is when the punter is able to recover his total bet costs if the horse runs a place. This requires that the horse is at a sufficient price to cover both win and place bets. Each-way odds are usually around $5.

Let’s say for example you put $10 each-way on a horse at decimal price of $5 (fractional odds of 4-1). The total stake in this case is $20 ($10 win and $10 place). The potential place dividend at a quarter of the odds (1-1 even money) is $20 ($10 stake plus $10 profit). Thus, the return is sufficient to recover the $20 total bet. 

Horse wins:

$10 WIN bet @$5 = pays $50 (profit $40)

$10 PLACE bet @$2= pays $20 (profit $10)

Horse runs a place only:

$10 PLACE bet @$2= pays $20 (enough to cover the $20 total bet).

Even if the horse runs a place, the return at each-way odds is sufficient to cover the bets.

Bet each-way on Lucky Longshots

Each-way betting is a good way to bet on longshots. It’s rare that a punter has supreme confidence in betting a longshot. Hence, each-way betting is a viable way to reduce the risk. It not only includes the win bet, but also provides insurance if the horse is beaten into a place. The place dividend for longshots is more than sufficient to cover the each-way bet and usually provides a reasonable profit. Taking an each-way bet is a great way to take advantage of longshots that are included in our free horse racing tips every Saturday morning. For example, one recent lucky longshot, Travimyfriend, placed at the huge odds of $151. Punters who took our tip enjoyed the $41 place dividend for a $1 each-way. It’s also important to be cognisant of any track bias as it could bring some longshots into play.

Is each-way the right way?

Each-way betting is a useful strategy for horse racing punters. There are distinct advantages for betting each-way instead of simple win and place. It depends on the level of confidence, the number of runners, the number of real chances, and the odds at hand. The astute punter must weigh up all these factors before deciding whether to bet each-way or use different methods to maximise profits.

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Category: Betting Strategies

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