A Show bet is one of the easiest bets you can make in horse racing: simply pick a horse to finish in the 1st, 2nd or 3rd position in a given race. If your horse runs first or second or third: you win your Show Bet. If your horse finishes what's called “off the board” (not in the top three): you don't win.
Example: Let's say you make a $2 show bet on a horse with odds of 1/9. This means you can potentially make a profit of $2.22 if your selected horse finishes the racing event in either first, second or third position. Your payout will not change if your selected horse finishes in first or third.
In short, betting on a horse to win means just as it says, i.e. your horse has to come in first. Betting on a horse to place means you will win the bet if it comes in first or second. And betting on it to show means it will pay off for you if it comes in first, second, or third.
What horse bet pays the most? The horse bets that pay the most are the accumulators. However, with an accumulator bet, all your horse racing selections need to win (or place if each-way) so there is less chance of you winning. But as the odds are higher this gives you the highest-paying returns.
Types of Sports Bets
Let's explore a baker's dozen of the most common bet types in horse racing:
Six tips for becoming a sharper sports bettor
3 Profitable Horse Racing Betting Strategies
What are the easiest bets to win?
win bet A win bet is the most common and straightforward bet. You're simply betting on a specific horse to finish in first place. If the horse that you wager on doesn't finish first, you lose the bet. Of the straight bets, this usually offers the best payout, as it has the greatest risk.
Exacta Bet An exacta is more difficult than win, place and show wagers, but yields a higher payout. You bet an exacta by selecting a minimum two horses to finish first and second. These horses must finish first and second, in that order, for you to win the wager.