Gambling on the Greyhounds

Greyhound racing is a popular sport not only for its captivating nature but because it is a betting sport. It is important to remember that, for the most part, those who win money do so based on knowledge and experience rather than luck. When betting it is useful to follow some basic rules:

  1. Don’t spend too much money (particularly at the beginning when you are uncertain of what you are doing).
  2. Never spend money you don’t have.
  3. Have a plan and stick to it.

The aim of betting is to beat the ‘odds maker.’ The better is required to place their bet through a ‘sports book’ or ‘book maker’ either in a shop, at a race, or online. In order to bet, the customer picks the type of bet they would like to make and the amount of money (‘the wager’). Below is further information on the types of bets available:

Greyhound Racing Odds Table (based on £2 bets)
1-5 2.40 7-2 9.00
2-5 2.80 4 10.00
1-2 3.00 9-2 11.00
3-5 3.20 5 12.00
4-5 3.60 6 14.00
1 4.00 7 16.00
6-5 4.40 8 18.00
7-5 4.80 9 20.00
3-2 5.00 10 22.00
8-5 5.20 12 26.00
9-5 5.60 15 32.00
2 6.00 18 38.00
5-2 7.00 20 42.00
3 8.00 22 46.00

Some useful tips:

  • Look at the age of the dogs racing. Note that greyhounds usually peak around 2 years of age.
  • Place bets on hounds who have had some decent races.
  • Note which trap the greyhounds are starting from and compare it with previous races. A dog who performed well from trap 2 may not necessarily place when starting from trap 4.
  • If a greyhound is backed just a few minutes prior to the event and the odds are significantly reduced, this is usually an indication that somebody has reliable information that others may not be aware of.
  • Recent greyhounds are usually more reliable than those who have not raced for a while, even if their form was previously good. They are likely to have just recovered from an illness or injury.
  • Learn to spot value odds in addition to likely winners.
  • Do not re-play your winnings immediately. Put some or all into your pocket and leave it there!
  • In wet weather, pick the heavier dogs, as lighter ones have trouble, and bet on dogs running the inside traps. If these two factors do not correlate, it may be wise to sit the race out.
  • Observe dogs before racing. Those who are more high spirited often perform better than droopy hounds.
  • Neighbouring dogs often stick together in terms of running and staying out of trouble. This is useful knowledge when placing ‘exacta’ bets.
  • Remember – observation and knowledge of dogs is crucial. Learn who your favourites are and follow them. Play safe and avoid betting heavily on just one race.
  • Don’t be afraid to sit out on races you are less sure about.

For further information regarding betting tips, strategies and terminologies, visit Greyhound Racing Today.

Betting Terminology

  • Win – Collect money only if the dog bet on wins.
  • Place – Collect money if the dog bet on comes first or second.
  • Show – Collect money if the dog bet on comes first, second or third.
  • Exacta, Forecast or Perfecta – Only collect if the dogs bet on come first or second in that exact order.
  • Pick 3 – Win if the dogs triumphed in 3 consecutive, designated races. All 3 dogs must be chosen prior to the start of the first of the 3 races and the player must specify with the teller or on the form that they want to place a ‘pick 3’ wager.
  • Quinella or Reverse Forecast – Similar to the ‘Exacta’, the player picks the dogs they think will place first and second, but this time the order doesn’t count. The player does not need to specify when placing the wager which of the dogs will place first and which second – the player will collect either way round.
  • Double Quinella – As above, but the player must pick the winning two dogs for two consecutive races. Again, the order of the dogs in first and second does not matter.
  • Daily Double – The player collects if they select the winners of the first two races of the day.
  • Trifecta or Trio – Similar to Exacta, this time the player picks the dogs placing first, second and third in the exact order.
  • Superfecta – As above except, in order to collect, the player must pick the correct order of the first four dogs when they fill out the betting slip.

Form Cards

Upon arrival, all Greyhound spectators are given a ‘form’ card. This gives some details about each of the dogs competing in the races that are to be taking place that day. Each line on the form card gives information about a different race including the outcome of each dogs last 6 races. Some key terms featured on form cards are:

  • CalcTm – The time the dog would have been expected to run had conditions been ‘normal’.
  • Class – The grade of the race won. The lower the number, the higher the grade. OR stands for open race, meaning dogs not attached to the stadium can participate.
  • CWinTm – The time it took for the winning dog to run.
  • Date – The last few dates the dog has raced-the most recent will be listed first.
  • Dis – The distance of the race (in metres). An ‘H’ afterwards indicates that hurdles were featured in the race.
  • G’ng – This is the ‘going’, which means it details the conditions of the race. Dogs run quickest on dry ground. ‘N’ stands for ‘normal’. If the goings are not ‘N’, adjustments will be made in hundredths of a second.
  • Kilos – The weight of the dog in kilograms.
  • SP – The starting price which the compiler had the dog at for that race.
  • STm/Hcp – This is the time it took for the dog to cross the finish line the first time round. It is known as the sectional or split time and indicates the ‘early’ pace of the dog. If it is a handicapped race, how much of a start the dog was given is shown instead.
  • Tp – The trap the dog has run from.