Totepool Betting

Totepool betting is available at 56 of the 59 racecourses across the UK, at greyhound stadiums and online through a number of different sportsbooks. It offers an alternative to the traditional method of betting on horse and greyhound racing, with successful punters receiving a share of a prize pot rather than a set payout as with fixed-odds wagering.

Where to Place a Totepool Bet

You can bet using Totepool outlets at racecourses and dog tracks across the country, or online with Totesport or its parent company Betfred. Although Totesport owns the monopoly on this type of betting, many other bookmakers feature Totepool betting through a syndication agreement.

Totepool Betting Winning totepool bets receive a share of a prize pot rather than a set payout as with fixed-odds wagering

How Totepool Betting Works

Totepool bets are placed online or at outlets at courses, where you place your stake on your selection or selections and declare which type of Totepool bet you would like to place. The distribution of prizes works more like a lottery than regular sports betting, with the prize for those who choose the winning horse or greyhound determined by how much money was bet on the race and how many other winning punters there are.

If you back the favourite and it wins, it is likely that a greater number of punters will have also bet on the same selection, meaning your share will be smaller than if you correctly backed an outsider.

For the basic Totewin bet, in which you simply predict the winner of the race, 16.5 percent of the prize pool is returned to the company in commission, also known as the ‘takeout’. The remaining 83.5 percent is then divided by the total number of stakes and rounded down to the nearest ten pence to provide a figure that represents the amount received in winnings for each £1 bet. Winning bettors are then paid out a dividend, including their stake, proportional to the amount they originally bet.

If there is less than £1 in total staked on the winning horse, any winning punters receive the relevant proportion of the net prize pool, with the remaining funds, plus the takeout, rolling over to a later race. If there is no money placed on the winning horse, the entire prize pool, including the commission, rolls over.

Whereas at a traditional bookmaker, you would see the odds on the horses or greyhounds winning the race, in Totepool betting you are shown an indication of the payout for every pound wagered as the prize pool stands at that moment. As more punters place more money, that figure will inevitably fluctuate.

Types of Totepool Bets

There are a number of different types of Totepool bet you can place, each offering a different challenge and range of rewards.

  • Totewin
    Bet on the horse or greyhound you think will win the race, sharing the prize pool with other winners if you are correct.
  • Toteplace
    To win your bet, you must choose a runner that will finish first or second if there are between five and seven in the field, in the first three in races with between eight and 16 participants and in the first four for handicaps comprising 16 horses or more.
  • Eachway
    This is a combination of Totewin and Toteplace bets on races of five or more runners, requiring you to double your stake to cover both bets and following the same rules for placing as the Toteplace bet.
  • Scoop6
    Pick the winners of all six selected races on a Saturday to claim the six-figure Win Fund and receive the chance to bank the Bonus Fund if you pick the winner of a specially chosen race on the following Saturday. If your six picks place under the same rules as for Toteplace, you receive the Place Fund, which is worth an average of £700.
  • Jackpot
    This is a daily version of Scoop6, which offers an average prize fund of approximately £17,000.
  • Placepot
    With Placepot, you choose runners that place in each of the first six races at your chosen meeting to win the prize fund, worth an average of £370.
  • Quadpot
    For Quadpot, you need to pick runners that place in the third, fourth, fifth and sixth races at your chosen meeting. The average value of a Quadpot dividend is £52.
  • Totetreble
    To win Totetreble, you need to back winners in three consecutive races at the same meeting.
  • Totedouble
    To win Totedouble, you must accurately select the winners of two consecutive races at the same meeting.
  • Exacta
    With Exacta, you must name the horses that finish first and second in a race in the correct order. You can opt for a reverse Exacta, which allows the horses to finish in either order, although it costs double the stake as it is effectively two separate bets.
  • Trifecta
    Pick the first three runners in a race in the correct order, or choose a reverse Trifecta to win if they all finish in the first three in any order. This is the equivalent of six bets, so it costs you six times the basic stake.
  • Swinger
    Choose two of the first three runners in any order. This can only be placed when there is a field of six or more.
  • Quickpick
    Choose the type of bet you would like to place (such as a Totewin or Exacta) and the computer will select a runner for you at random. This option works like a lottery Lucky Dip.