Horse racing odds are used for several reasons. What the odds will tell you depends on the type of odds in place. There are two main types of odds – Fixed Odds and Parimutuel Odds – and most tracks stick to one or the other.
In Fixed odds betting, the odds will tell you two things – how likely that bet is to succeed, and how much the pay out will be if the bet is a success.
In Parimutuel wagering, the horse racing odds are slightly different. With Parimutuel wagering, the total prize pool, the odds represent something entirely different. Parimutuel wagering carries odds that correlate directly to to how many people have wagered on that particular horse or combination of horses.
If more people are betting on your horse or horses, then the odds of success will increase, all the while decreasing the pay out. If you place a wager on a bet that has not seen much action, then you will receive a significantly higher return of investment on your bet.
Fixed odds remain a very consistent form of betting, though they may not always carry as high a payout as Parimutuel odds. Horse betting odds that remain fixed will be easier for players in a sense, as the oddsmakers will show a clear favorite.
This will serve to assist beginning bettors best, as well as help advanced equine bettors with the calculation of their systems. With Fixed odds, your payout will always be static, which is something many players would prefer over the Parimutuel betting odds that can start off with amazing pay outs then diminish to nothing over the course of the time to Post.
Those who wish to play favorites will do better to find horse betting odds that remain Fixed, as Parimutuel odds fluctuate with inconsistency prior to the closure of the betting lines. Simply put- in Fixed odds wagering, when you bet a horse at 4-1 odds he/she remains at that rate regardless of all other wagering.
In Parimutuel odds a horses betting line will fluctuate depending on the amount of action on that horse. In the Parimutuel system you could wager on a horse that is 5-1 at two minutes to Post and the horse could go off at 9-5. We’ve all seen it happen.
While Fixed odds carry several advantages, Parimutuel horse race odds are no better nor no worse. While different, Parimutuel odds are equally as useful and bountiful. Provided you make the right pick, Parimutuel odds can carry even higher payouts than fixed odds would allow.
Granted these odds can be slated toward a horse that carries lower chances of success, due to the fact that many people may just follow other bettors, there will always be an occasion in which a favorite carries better paying odds because most of the other bettors fail to see who the Winner will be.
Then, unfortunately, this can turn into a popularity contest, or you may have very askew odds prior to the closing of the lines, but Parimutuel wagering also ensures that players are paid out according to how much is brought in, thus keeping more money in the hands of the players.
Always keep in mind that odds should never be the only tool you use to place a bet. Unless you are simply looking to throw around money and Win big off of an underdog, you will want to make sure you use the predetermined odds as a starting point in building your bankroll. As with any form of betting, never overestimate the odds, as they are more a set of guidelines rather than a strict truth.
When Monmouth Park reopens it is set to become the first course in America to offer Fixed-odds horse race wagering. NYRA is said to be looking at this option as well. Fixed-odds wagering will apply to only WIN, PLACE, and SHOW betting.