Thursday 17 March 2016

A Dog Has His Day: Greyhound Betting Explained

Much of the excitement around watching the magnificent specimens featured in greyhound racing compete comes in successfully betting on the outcome of a race, but with the constantly fluctuating conditions of the sport and the dogs that drive it, picking a single winner reliable is a dubious prospect at best. However, intelligent bet structuring can greatly increase your odds of coming away a winner at the track, and devising a consistent strategy for online greyhound betting starts with understanding the various types of bets available.

Win, Place and Show

These greyhound racing terms for first, second and third place finishes also denote the bets associated with them. A winning wager on a dog to win obviously requires a first place finish, but a “place” bet is successful if the dog finishes 1st or 2nd and a “show” bet pays out if the dog finishes anywhere in the top three.

Quinela and Perfecta

A quinela bet is a two-dog wager that predicts the competitors will finish first and second, and the dogs can finish in either order so long as they are the first two across the finish line. Similarly, a perfecta also requires the selection of two dogs, but is slightly more difficult as they must finish in a predetermined order or the bet is lost. However, a perfecta bet makes up for the increased risk with a more attractive payout for the same wager.

Trifecta Types

As the name suggests, a trifecta bet is a prediction on the performance of three competing dogs, and they must finish in an exact order for the bet to be successful. A key trifecta centers on the performance of one dog who must win the race, with the other two dogs selected to finish second and third in either order. A trifecta box hedges the bets even more by allowing a wagerer to pick three dogs to finish in any order, but has a higher bet cost because it is effectively a combination of 6 single bets.


A superfecta bet focuses on the fortunes of the top four dogs in a race. There are two types of superfecta bet, a straight bet which requires that the top four finish in a specific order and a more expensive box superfecta bet which allows the chosen competitors to finish in any order as long as they are the top four performers in the race.


Standard bets such as a straight trifecta have a relatively low success rate, with less than 2 races out of 100 correctly predicted by wagerers. On the other hand, box wagers are much more likely to pay out, with a three dog box correctly predicted in approximately 1 in 14 races and a four-dog superfecta box paying out more than 20 percent of the time. “Wheel” bets, which combine a prediction of a first or second place finish for one dog with any finish from the rest of the field, have an even higher chance of success, with bettors experiencing win frequencies of over 25 percent by leaning on the right choices.

With roots stemming back into the traditions of English noblemen who bred these premium pedigree hounds for sport, greyhound races have long held fascination for spectators and wagerers. While the sport is not nearly as predictable as horse racing, it can be nearly as lucrative with a sound betting strategy.