A-Z Glossary of Gambling Terms
Dates leading up to a race when Owners and Trainers must decide whether or not to run their horses in particular races. Each race has 2, one 5 days prior to the event, and one the day before. These can also be called declaration stages.
A multiple bet. A kind of ‘let-it-ride’ bet. Making simultaneous selections on two or more races with the intent of pressing the winnings of the first win on the bet of the following race selected, and so on. All the selections made must win for you to win the parlay.
Across The Card
Betting on races at the same time at different meetings.
An affiliate marketer is someone who makes money online in return
for helping a business by promoting their product, service or site.
“All in” or “All in play or not” markets are markets that have been priced up to reflect the fact that the selection may not take any part in the event. Therefore if your selection does not play, or take part in the event, your bet will stand as a loser.
When a horse is trying its hardest.
All Weather Racing
Some racecourses have an artificial surface, enabling racing to commence when other grass tracks may be closed by weather conditions. All weather tracks are for Flat Racing only, and include venues such as Lingfield, Kempton Park, Wolverhampton and Southwell.
A term in Horse Racing for all horses that run, but do not finish in the paid out ‘places’.
Ante Post markets are set up far in advance of the scheduled start of certain events. Ante post prices are usually higher to reflect the additional risk that the selection may not even take part in the event. Ante Post markets are “All in”, in that, the bet still stands whether the selection takes part in the event or not.
Many Major Horse Racing events have Ante Post markets created sometimes a year in advance, for example the Cheltenham Gold Cup and the Grand National.
Ante-post prices are offered in the days, weeks or months preceding a major race, such as the Grand National. When you bet a selection ante-post you are betting on the chances of it competing as well as winning. Hence if it is unable to participate due to injury or not being entered in the race your bet is a loser. The only exception to this is when a horse is entered in a race but is balloted out in which case stakes will be returned.
Any To Come (ATC) (also known as Conditional or ‘if cash’ bets
A bet with wagers which include conditional bets. For example, if part of the wager produces a sufficient return then a (predetermined) amount may be wagered or reinvested on a subsequent bet.
A young jockey who gains a weight allowance over more experienced jockeys. The weight allowance decreases as the jockey gains more victories.
A punter who locks in or guarantees profit by exploiting price differences in a market.
A trading technique that uses the differences between bookmakers’ prices, odds or opinions on event outcomes to make an instant and guaranteed profit.
Websites or software packages which usually provide comparison tables of markets for individuals to bet on and a matched betting calculator. They are commonly known as ‘auto-matchers’ and are usually used by individuals who have a good understanding of matched betting.
Synonym of Any To Come.
At The Post
A term indicating that all the horses are at the starting point of the race, and that the event will begin imminently.
Automatic websites or software packages usually aimed at individuals with little or no experience in matched betting. They automatically scan the market, calculate the right bet to minimise the initial loss and maximise the return on the free bet. The system then provides the individual with instructions on how to place the bets to generate a profit. These websites usually filter out offers where there is a mathematical chance of making a loss to ensure users can’t bet on offers where they could lose money.
For example, when you ‘back’ England, you are placing a bet on them to win.
A ‘backed’ horse or team is one on which lots of bets have been placed.
A horse which is backed-in means that bettors have outlaid a lot of money on that horse, with the result being a decrease in the odds offered.
Bookmakers’ Afternoon Greyhound Service (BAGS)
An association that was formed in 1967 to provide a programme of greyhound meetings to be held in the afternoon.
The process by which the number of runners in a handicap race is reduced, on the occasions when more horses have been entered for a race than is permitted for safety reasons. This is done in ascending order of weight.
Refers to the odds of those runners in a race not quoted with a price during early betting shows. The bar price is the minimum odds for any of those selections not quoted.
A selection that is an extremely strong favourite, may be considered by many as a banker. Bankers are often used as the cornerstones of combination bets to boost value.
Beaten by a Length (BBL)
This is an offer relating to horse racing, where your money is returned (as a free bet) if your horse is beaten by a length or less. If you place a bet on any eligible race and your selection finishes second, beaten by a length or less, the bookmaker will give you a free bet up to £/€25.
Best Odds Guaranteed (BOG)
If you back a horse at odds of 4/1 and the horse ends up winning the race at 6/1, you would be paid out on that horse at 6/1.
The price of a horse may vary throughout the day of the race. Best price is the price on the day that gives you the best return for your money. For example, if a horse was 10/1, but the price drifted to 12/1 before coming in at 9/1, the best price would be 12/1.
An amount of money that is put up against someone else’s on the basis of the outcome of an unpredictable sporting event.
Something which outlines the details of your bet. If you bet in-shop, this should be given to you once you have placed your bet. Online, this will be available when you check your bet history. Without a receipt, your bet most likely won’t have been confirmed.
This is where you put your selections and enter your stake before confirming your bet, either online or in-shop.
This is a site which enables people to bet against each other rather than against a bookmaker. A betting exchange is an essential part of matched betting as it allows you to place your lay bet (against your back bet). Exchanges usually charge commission (between 2%-5%). Examples include Smarkets and Betfair.
Betting In Running (BIR)
Markets that are still available to bet on throughout the course of an event. Also known as ‘Live Betting’ or ‘Betting In Play’.
Betting ring – The main area at a racecourse where the bookmakers operate.
Stands for ‘Betting Without’, and usually refers to the favourite(s) of an event. For settlement purposes the selection(s) excluded are disregarded.
Bingo: A game in which numbers are randomly drawn by a caller and marked off on a card by the player. The winner is the first person to mark off all their numbers. Time to get your dabber ready…
BIR and BIP
Acronyms for Betting In Running or Betting In Play.
A favourite that the bookmakers do not expect to win or ‘go down’.
A device fitted to a horse’s head which restricts it’s field of vision in order to help it’s concentration.
Board / Show Prices
The prices currently displayed by the trackside boards of the on-course bookmakers. These prices replace Ladbrokes early prices normally around ten or fifteen minutes before the race begins. The Starting Price (SP) is derived from these prices.
Depending on the context, you will see this word in both sports betting and online casinos. The most popular type of bonus is the welcome bonus which is often given to new customers upon opening an account. Check the terms and
conditions to see how the bonus is used in a specific offer.
Both Teams To Score (BTTS)
Does what it says on the tin: this is a market you can bet on where you’re betting on both teams to score! The great thing about this market is that your bet isn’t over until the final whistle has been blown.
A bookmaker’s tally of amounts bet on each competitor/selection within an event, and odds necessary to gain profit.
This is a person or company, whom is licensed to accept bets from the public. Also known as a “Bookie”.
These are Flat races run under National Hunt rules so as to give inexperienced jumping horses experience of racing without any jumps. These races are between two and two and a half miles long, called National Hunt Flat races, but are informally known as Bumper races.
In Spread or Index betting, the higher figure quoted by an Index bookmaker.
An odds calculator which allows you to check how big your profit or loss will be on a qualifying or free bet.
Also known as a Super Yankee. A Canadian is a combination bet consisting of 26 bets with 5 selections in different events. The combination bet is made up of 10 doubles, 10 trebles, five 4-folds and one 5-fold.
This is an option offered by some bookmakers which allows you to settle your bet before the market/event you bet on has been completed. The benefit to cashing out is that you can secure a profit or minimise your losses if your selection is doing well or badly. The bet will be settled at the cash out price,
which is different to the original price you took. The cash out price is calculated using a formula relating to the price at the time of the bet and the price at the time of the request to cash out.
Casino (also known as virtual casinos or Internet casinos)
Online casinos enable customers to play and wager on casino games through the Internet. Though not straight matched betting, low-risk or risk-free casino offers can be added to your overall strategy to boost your income further.
Betting on things you normally wouldn’t in order to recover losses.
CD / C&D
Course and Distance. A form guide indicator for a horse. ‘C’ – has won at the same course, ‘D’ – has won at the same distance, ‘C&D’ – has won a race at the same course and distance.
This is £100 GBP (also known as a ‘Ton’).
Betting on things you normally wouldn’t in order to recover losses.
A game that we restrict the betting on, usually because of injuries or bad weather.
The five major races of the flat season for 3 year olds: the 1000 Guineas, the 2000 Guineas, the Derby, the Oaks and the St Leger. Fillies can be entered for all five, but colts are not allowed to be entered for the 1000 Guineas or the Oaks.
Clerk of the Scales
The official responsible for ensuring all jockeys weigh in correctly at the end of a race.
Where three or more competitors are all favourite (have lowest odds). If you back a successful co-favourite you need to divide your stake by the number of favourites to calculate your winnings.
These are the racing silks of the owners, as worn by the jockeys.
The name for male horse under the age of 5. After which it is called a Stallion.
Betting exchanges charge commission for the use of their service.
Correct Score betting is popular with football, where the total number of typical scores is limited. The odds are dependent on the actual match odds between the two teams.
Available in Pool Betting. One or more selections that have been grouped together for the purposes of betting. Most commonly, horses are coupled in US or French racing if they share the same Owner or Trainer.
An at-a-glance view of the same market (typically the Win-Draw Win market) across many different events, ideal for building a multiple bet.
This is a horse which tends to run well at a particular track.
In sports betting, beating the spread by a required number of points. To “cover the spread”.
Cover the Field (see Extra Places)( also known as Laying the Field)
This is a method used to back the whole field across a selection of bookies who are offering the extra place. This way, you are guaranteed to hit the extra place bonus. Back and lay each horse, each way, until the whole field has been covered.
A situation where two or more competitors finish at the same time/ completely tied. This is something usually seen in horse racing and is also very popular in golf.
You can choose how you want to view your odds to be displayed on your bookmaker account. Decimal odds show the odds as a decimal (e.g. 4.00) and include both your stake and winnings. Your returns are easily calculated in this format, by simply multiplying the decimal odds by your stake. For example, £10 at odds of 4.00, returns you (£10 x 4.00) £40. Both the betting exchange and odds calculator work in decimal form, which means that in order to compare like for like when it comes to odds, it’s easier to switch the bookmaker odds to decimal too.
This is the amount of money you put into your bookmaker or betting exchange account.
This is the distance of a Race; Five furlongs is the minimum and the four and a half mile Grand National is the longest.
Distance is also the margin by which a horse is beaten by the horse directly in front. This can range from a ‘Nose’ to ‘By a distance’ (even more than thirty Lengths).
The winning return declared for Pool Betting. Tote payouts are always in dividends.
A bet consisting of two selections, both of which must win for the wager to be successful.
The basis of some widely used systems. After a loss the player doubles the size of his previous bet hoping to win back the money lost and make a profit. Also known as a Martingale system.
At the overnight declaration stage, all entries in a flat race are given a stall number from where they will start. Depending on the state of the going, the position of the stalls and the layout of the course, the draw may favour high, middle or low numbers at different tracks. Stalls are not used for National Hunt racing and therefore the draw does not apply.
Draw No Bet
A sports market similar to matched betting, where the stake is returned to you if neither team wins an event, essentially removing the ‘draw’ from the Win-Draw-Win market.
This is where the price of one selection increases because of a lack of interest from bettors. When the odds on a competitor “lengthen”, they are said to have “drifted” or be “on the drift”.
Term originated from Al Capone’s accountant, nicknamed ‘Dutchy’. This more advanced method allows bettors to divide stakes over a number of selections in an event, so that the same amount is won regardless of which selection wins. The technique is useful when there are two or more outcomes you wish to back and have a specific amount to stake. Dutching is a betting term for backing all of the outcomes in an event and can be used as an alternative to laying, meaning that you don’t have to.
Each Way Arbing
Is where the exchange place market is skewed and an arb takes place on the place market only. For example, a horse showing at 8 / 8.5 for the win but 3.0/2.44 for the place is known as a place arb.
Each Way Betting
An each way bet is essentially two separate bets: one bet is
put on the horse to win and the other on the horse to be placed. (For a horse
to be placed, it needs to finish in the top 1-4 runners, based on the number of
horses in the race). If 16 horses run in a race, usually 4 places are paid. However, this can change depending on the number of horses in a race (2-4 runners: 1st only, 5-7 runners: 1st and 2nd, 8+ runners 1st, 2nd and 3rd, 16+ runner handicaps 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th).
Each Way Matching
This is the matched betting version of each way betting. The opposing markets to the ones you placed your two back bets on are available to lay in Betfair. Therefore you can lay off both the win and place of the bet, meaning that you can guarantee profit.
In horse racing, early prices can be offered on selected races in advance of racecourse betting. The prices are sometimes offered the day before but are usually announced on the day of the race. Early prices are fixed if you take them but may be subject to a Rule 4 in the case of any withdrawals. If your early price selection does not run, your stake will normally be refunded.
In computing, an emulator is hardware or software that enables one computer system (the host) to behave like another computer system (the guest).
In this case, you can install an add-on via Chrome, for example, which allows you to log into your bookmaker account as if from your phone, but on your computer.
Then, any bets you place via the emulator on desktop will qualify for mobile-only offers.
Enhanced odds are a variation of free bet sign up offers, where bookmakers offer a significant price (or odds) boost on a sporting event to new customers. These generous giveaways are a marketing tool often offered by the bookie as a quick way to encourage new sign-ups – fast. Enhanced odds are usually centred around the biggest sports events of the day or weekend. As with any offer, make sure you check the T&Cs of enhanced odds.
Odds of 1 to 1, or 1:1. A £10.00 stake would return £20.00 (£10.00 win plus £10.00 staked). Also known as “scotch” or “levels”. Evens In Decimal Odds = 2.00; in Fractional Odds = 1/1; in US Odds = +100
Expected Value (EV) (also known as Estimated Value)
The Expected Value of a bet is possibly the most valuable calculation a bettor can make and shows how much (on average) they can expect to win per bet. The concept of expected value is used to evaluate which option you should choose to maximise profits and minimise losses and shows what you can expect to win or lose if you were to bet on the same outcome many times with the same stake. It is a positive (+EV) or negative (-EV) indicator that should help you make the best decision on what to bet on. The concept can be used in all online casino games.
Multiply your probability of winning by the amount you could win per bet and subtract the probability of losing multiplied by the amount you stand to lose per bet: (Amount Won per Bet x Probability of Winning) – (Amount Lost per Bet x Probability of Losing).
Make sure you check the expiry date on your free bets so you don’t miss out on those profits!
This is a type of promotion which is usually offered on horse races and where a bookmaker will increase the number of places they pay out on. The number of places is dependent on the race.
Extra Time in football is an additional 30 minute period (2 x 15 minute halves) played to decide the winner of a tied fixture in Knockout competitions where one team is required to be victorious. Standard football bets do not include Extra Time, they are settled on the result in 90-minutes, and so to include Extra Time, the market you bet on must specifically state that it is included, or state ‘Outright’ or ‘To Qualify’.
Favourite (also known as Jolly)
The selection in any sporting event that is considered the most likely to win. The Favourite has the shortest or lowest odds.
Two selections who share this position are known as ‘joint favourites’ and three or more selections who share this position are known as ‘co-favourites’.
“The Field” usually refers to all “other selections” in a market excluding the named selection(s) which is(are) usually the favourite(s).
The name for female horse under the age of 5. After which it is called a Mare.
First Past the Post (FPTP, 1stP, 1PTP or FPP): All horse racing bets are paid out on the official result at the time of the “weigh in”. However, some of the prominent bookmakers also pay out on bets if your horse was First Past the Post. What this means is that if your horse crosses the finishing line first but isn’t awarded the win – for whatever reason – you will still receive your winnings.
The first list of prices for an event.
First Team to Score: This is a market where you bet on the team you think will score the first goal in a match, regardless of what the result of the game is.
A fixed price is the price you get if you choose to take a price on a particular selection. On the internet this is done by selecting the price rather than the Starting Price (SP). In a betting shop you can ask the staff to write the price on the betting slip to have the bet at a fixed price. Otherwise it will be settled at the SP. For telephone bets the operator will quote a price and if you request that price then it will be read back to you and that is the price the bet will be settled at.
Fixed Prices: A fixed price is the price you get if you choose to take a price on a particular selection. On the internet this is done by selecting the price rather than the Starting Price (SP). In a betting shop you can ask the staff to write the price on the betting slip to have the bet at a fixed price. Otherwise it will be settled at the For telephone bets the operator will quote a price and if you request that price then it will be read back to you and that is the price the bet will be settled at.
Races are run over a minimum distance of five furlongs and a maximum of 2.5 miles.
The official Flat Racing season now runs all year round to include races run on all-weather surfaces such as at Kempton, Lingfield, Southwell and Wolverhampton.
Free Bet: This is one of the most important things to a matched bettor, as it’s where the profits are extracted from. Free bets are offered to both new and existing customers.
Free Play: Associated with online casinos, free play is where you receive an offer to play a game, or spin the wheels on a slot machine, without having to use money from your real cash balance.
A young horse, up to the age of 1 year. Males are Colts and females are Fillies.
Fold: When preceded by a number, a fold indicates the
number of selections in an accumulator (e.g. five-fold= 5 selections).
Forecast – A bet that involves correctly predicting the 1st and 2nd for a particular event. This bet can be straight, reversed or permed.
Past performances used to give an indication of the competitor’s chances. In US, short for the Daily Racing Form.
Fractional Odds: The old-skool way to list odds and still commonly used in the bookies. Fractional odds give you your profit excluding your stake, so your stake needs to be added back on to calculate the total return. Matched bettors usually work in decimal odds, and you’ll be able to switch to this in the settings section of most bookmaker sites.
All the doubles, trebles and accumulators involved in a given number of selections.
A football term for the standard match length, 90-minutes.
Odds offered on winners of sporting events in advance of the event itself. Please refer to our article on Ante-Post.
Gambling: Gambling is where you risk money in order to win money or a prize. The outcome of the game is usually down to chance, so there is no guarantee that you will win. In fact, when gambling, you might leave with less money than you started with or nothing at all.
Gambling comes in many forms and can be done on or offline: betting on sports or events, casino games, lotteries, bingo, scratchcards, or card games (like poker and blackjack).
If you do choose to gamble, remember to make responsible choices and never chase losses.
A castrated male horse.
Goalscorer: There are a few goalscorer markets you can bet on, like Anytime, First and Last. The promotion on offer depends varies according to individual bookmakers.
This is the state of the ground. E.g. hard, good, soft etc.
This is when greyhounds are being put in to the traps or horses into the stalls.
Going to Post
This is when horses are on the way to the start of a race.
This is £1,000 GBP (also known as a ‘Big ‘Un’).
The Grand National is a famous National Hunt horse race which is held in April at Aintree Racecourse.
Handicap: This is a method used by bookmakers to turn a one-sided event into a more attractive betting proposition. In football betting, teams are awarded a number of points depending on their skill (also known as the “pointspread” or “line”). An advantage for one of the sides is given beforehand and applied to the final result of the game. In horse racing, a handicap race is one in which horses carry different weights. A better horse will carry a heavier weight in order to make the race fairer. Two of the main handicaps you will come across in football are Asian and European. With an Asian Handicap, draws get refunded, whereas they are possible in European Handicapping.
(To) Hedge – The covering of a bet with a second bet.
Heinz – A Heinz is a multiple bet consisting of 57 bets involving 6 selections in different events. The multiple bet breakdown is 15 doubles, 20 trebles, 15×4-folds, 6×5-folds and one 6-fold.
This is restraining a horse behind the other runners in the early stages of a race.
Home Team: The team playing in its own town or stadium.
A race run under National Hunt Rules. In this race, the jumps are smaller and more flexible than those in the Chase, and they are a minimum of three and a half feet high. Races are between two miles and three and a half miles long.
Independent Betting Adjudication Service: An independent betting adjudicator which deals with any disputes which cannot be resolved between a bookmaker and a customer. Please see our full article on IBAS.
Independent Betting Adjudication Service (IBAS): An independent betting adjudicator which deals with any disputes which cannot be resolved between a bookmaker and a customer.
Industry Starting Price (ISP): The average of major bookies’ SP odds.
Injury Time: The amount of additional time (usually a few minutes) added to the end of a football match at the end of each 45 minute half by the referee. It covers stoppages that took place during the match.
In-play: Betting during a live event e.g. after a football match has kicked-off.
A term referring to an event which has started and is In Play. BIR and BIP (Betting In Running and Betting In Play) also refer to betting on events that have already begun.
In-shop: Bets placed in a shop, rather than online. See the terms and conditions of individual offers.
A selection that has finished ‘in the frame’, is one that has finished within the specified Place Terms for a particular race. As well as first, this may also include second, third or fourth, but depends on the event type and number of entries – for more details please see our Each Way article.
Depending on the place terms, this describes the horses in a race that finish 1st, 2nd and 3rd (and sometimes 4th) or the horses on which money will be paid to bettors.
When two or more horses share the shortest price at the start of a race. Bets on the favourite will have the stake split, half on each of the 2 favourites.
Jolly – The favourite in a race.
Kick Off (KO): Usually football – the start of the match.
Knockout (KO): Can either refer to the act of knocking someone out in a boxing match or a tournament in which the loser of each round is eliminated.
Lay Bet (also known as ‘Laying’): A lay bet is one you place on a specific outcome not to happen. For example, “I bet England will NOT win” is a lay bet. Therefore, in normal gambling (not matched betting) if England lose or draw, you win the bet and take the winnings. However, if England win the match, you will lose your liability on the exchange. You can only place a lay bet on a betting exchange.
Lay All at the Start: An accumulator method where all of the selections are layed off at the start as standard matches. Depending on the odds you go for, you will usually profit if the accumulator wins or more than 1 team loses. One of the key benefits of this method is that you know exactly what your maximum losses are from the start. Another is that you don’t have to remember to lay any of the selections sequentially (which can also cause alarm bells at the bookmaker).
Lay Sequentially: In this method, you can lay all of the selections sequentially (one after the other) and hope that one of the selections loses and the other 4 win, in order to get the refund.
Lay All Sequentially: Lock In Profit: This method allows you to guarantee yourself a profit from laying selections sequentially (one after the other) by laying against the value of the insurance. It doesn’t matter how many of the legs win or lose, the profit is still guaranteed.
This is an acronym for ‘Licensed Betting Office’ in the UK.
This is the length of a horse from the horse’s nose to the start of its tail.
Liability: When using the Odds Calculator to calculate your matched bet your bet, you will always be given a liability. Liability is the amount we will need in our exchange to cover our lay stake, essentially it is the amount that you stand to lose in the exchange if your lay bet loses. Remember, this is only lost from the exchange, your lay bet losing means that your back bet has won leaving you with only a small qualifying loss.
Licensed Betting Office (LBO): An official agency that possesses a legislative permit and acts upon the rules set by the Betting, Gaming and Lotteries Act 1963.
Liquidity: Liquidity is the amount of money available in the market for you to bet with. For example, the calculator is advising you to lay £10 on a selection, but there is only £8 in the market, your bet will only be partially matched. If there is more than £10 then there is enough to get your bet matched.
Live Chat: This is a feature available on a lot of bookmaker websites where you can instant message the support team if you have a question or want to double check the terms and conditions of a bet.
Handicap values, pointspreads and odds offered to the punter.
The outsider or un-fancied runner, usually against which “long odds” have been offered. Can be referred to as an Outsider.
Odds (e.g. 100 to 1) offered against a competitor unlikely to win.
Loophole: The dictionary defines a loophole as “a small or narrow opening, as in a wall, for looking through, for admitting light and air, or, particularly in a fortification, for the discharge of missiles against an enemy outside”, or “a means or opportunity of evading a rule, law”.
A horse that is yet to win a race.
What a 5 year-old female horse is called. Prior to this they are referred to as Fillies.
Market: There is a huge selection of betting markets offered by bookmakers and available on every single match, game or event. Popular betting markets include winner (home, draw, away), over/under, correct score, first goalscorer, half-time result and many more.
Matched Betting (also known as back or lay bet matching or double betting):
A betting technique used by individuals to profit from the free bets and incentives offered by bookmakers. Matched betting is practically risk-free, as it’s based on the application of a mathematical equation, rather than chance.
Min Stake/Max Lines or Max Stake/Min Lines: Casino strategies.
Major League Baseball (U.S).
Moneyback: A type of offer from a bookmaker where all losing bets will be refunded if a predetermined event happens in a sporting event. Sometimes customers will receive their initial stake back and other times, they’ll receive a free bet to the value of their stake. This is great news, especially when that 89th minute goal just cost you a winning bet.
Forecast of probable odds.
Multiples / Multi Leg: A bet involving more than one selection (such as a Double, Treble or Accumulator). Double and trebles are popular wagers for football match betting. Often, the only limit to the number of selections included within an accumulator bet is the bookmaker’s maximum allowable payout on one bet.
The selection which is considered to be a racing ‘Certainty’.
Reportedly an abbreviation of “Napoleon”, this refers to the selection that racing correspondents and tipsters nominate as their strongest selection of the day or meeting. Considered to be Nailed On.
National Hunt Rules
This can also be called ‘Jumps Racing’. This is for Horses a minimum of 4 years old, and involves competing over a minimum distance of 2 miles.
Neteller: An online payment provider (e-wallet) that allows payments and money transfers to be made through the Internet. Neteller is accepted by most of the main online bookmakers but be aware that depositing via this method may result in you not being eligible for certain promotions.
Ninety (90) minutes
The standard match length in football. 90-minutes includes bets are all on 90-minutes unless specifically stating otherwise. In knockout competitions, to include the result after Extra Time or penalties, To Qualify markets must be used.
In horseracing, this is a selection that does not take part in the race or event for which it was entered. How your bet is handled in the case of a nonrunner will depend on the bookmaker or type of bet placed. For example, some bookies will void your bet and refund your stake. If another selection in an event you have bet on becomes a non-runner, then prices for the remaining selections may need to be reduced to reflect their chances of winning an event.
Non-Runner No Bet
If your selection is non-runner no bet then you will get your stake back if your selection doesn’t participate.
Football term for 90-minutes.
Not Under Orders
On the Off of a race the flag is raised, and any runner withdrawn before the signal is deemed not to have come Under Starter’s Orders. Your stake on such a selection would be returned but any winning bets on the Race may be subject to a Rule 4.
This is where a Jockey or Trainer objects to the conduct of a participant in a Race and an investigation is carried out; similar to a Steward’s Enquiry.
In betting markets, prices are typically expressed as fractions e.g. 10/1 – meaning that should the bet win, for every unit staked, you would receive 10 in return (plus the original stake back). ‘Evens’ means even money e.g. winnings would be exactly the same as the stake (plus your stake back), whereas a shorter odds price such as 1/2 indicates that for every £2 you stake, a successful outcome would result in a £1 profit.
Where the odds are greater than evens (e.g. “5 to 2”). The amount you win will be greater than your stake.
Oddsmaker – A person who sets the betting odds.
This is a person who sets the odds by using research, their own knowledge and judgement about a sport.
A betting price where the odds are less than Evens i.e. the winnings are smaller than the stake.
The specific time to the second that an event actually starts at. Can also be referred to as ‘The Off’, ‘Race-off’ or ‘Off-Time’.
Offer: A bookmaker promotion that can take many forms and is available to matched bettors at all levels. For example, welcome or sign up offers are used to encourage new customers to open an account with an online bookmaker. This would look something like this: Bet £10, Get £10.
The Official Result is the final result of an event on which settlement of bets will be based. This is announced shortly after an event finishes to ensure fast settlement of bets, and therefore ignores any subsequent disqualifications or enquiries. Please see our full article on Results.
Betting conducted away from the track.
On the Bit
When a horse needs no riding from the jockey.
On The Nose
This is backing a horse to win only.
Outlay – The money a bettor wagers/bets is called his/her outlay.
This is the opposite to the favourite, usually to be found at lengthy odds. Also known as a Longshot or ‘The Rag’.
Outsider (also known as a Longshot): The opposite to the favourite in a sporting event and usually found at lengthy odds
Over/Under (also known as Total Goals Betting): A commonly available over/ under bet in football is over/under 2.5 goals. By introducing a decimal, this removes the possibility of a draw, leaving only two possible outcomes. Sometimes extra outcomes are added, but this depends on the bookmaker.
Overlay: A technique used to ensure a risk free bet for the next race if a horse wins.
This is the speed at which races are run at different stages. ‘Up with the pace’ means close to the leaders and ‘Off the pace’ means some way behind the leaders. Form for a race is often linked to the pace at which it was run, particularly relevant in the early stages.
This is the part of the race course incorporating the pre-parade ring (where horses are paraded prior to the race) and winner’s enclosure.
Palpable Error (Palp): When a bookie cancels a bet due to displaying incorrect odds.
These odds refer to dividends declared at races which are run outside the UK and Ireland. All bets are pooled and winners are paid according to size of pool and the number of other winners.
Patent – A multiple bet consisting of seven bets involving three selections in different events. A single on each selection, plus three doubles and one treble.
Payment Options (see PayPal and Skrill): The way you can deposit and withdraw funds depends on the bookmaker or betting exchange. Some accepted payment methods are credit/debit card, Skrill, PayPal and Neteller.
It is possible to ‘Perm’ selections, which is a way of ‘combining’ selections in multiple bets. E.g., if you have made 3 selections (A, B and C) you can ‘Perm’ every possible double. In this case, all the doubles possible are AB, AC, and BC making a total of three bets. If you have made 4 selections (A, B, C and D) you can also ‘perm’ all the possible doubles from these four. Now the doubles are AB, AC, AD, BC, BD, CD; a total of six bets.
In football betting it is often used to mean “any”, e.g. “Perm three from five” means “All of the available trebles from five selections”.
This is a method of determining the result where there is a close finish using Photographic evidence.
These are the selections chosen by an expert to bet on (also known as ‘Tips’).
The position where a bookmaker conducts his business on a racecourse.
The pitcher’s performance in Baseball greatly affects the outcome of a game. Therefore, if a game is subject to a late Pitcher change, all previous odds are irrelevant and all bets are void.
A selection that ‘Places’, is one that has finished within the specified ‘Place Terms’ for a particular race. As well as first, this may also include second, third or fourth, but depends on the event type and number of entries – for more details please see our Each Way article.
In non pari-mutuel betting, the returns for place bets are calculated as a proportion of the win odds. This varies between events and sports. The place terms should be clearly advertised when the bet is struck. Please also see our Each Way article.
This is the start that the Favourite gives the Underdog. Also known as the Line or Handicap.
A contest cancelled for any reason prior to it commencing and rescheduled at a later time/date.
These are the odds offered for a selection.
Price Boost: Where a selection’s price is improved for a set period of time, bettering the value offered by the original price stated. For example, a horse might be priced at 3/1, but then offered at 4/1 for a short period of time.
This is a (UK) term used for someone who has a bet.
Punt – Another term for bet or wager.
Qualifying Bet: A bet that is placed with a bookmaker in order to unlock a free bet of a larger amount.
Qualifying Loss: A small loss that is usually made on the qualifying bet.
A greyhound race which was previously started but not resolved due to technical difficulty is usually re-run later in the meeting.
This is the total amount you receive for a winning bet, including the stake being returned.
Winnings + Stake = Returns.
You may find that there are some bets you can’t combine on the betslip. This may be because the bets are related. For example, you cannot place a double on Chelsea to beat Liverpool in the semi-final and on Chelsea to reach the final.
Request a Bet (RAB): An innovative market where the customer decides what they want to bet on in a match. Offered by a few bookmakers, you can also choose to accumulate goals, cards or corners into one single bet.
Restricted: From time-to-time, you may find that you are only limited to the amount that you can stake when betting or are no longer able to take part in promotions. This will be a decision made by the bookmaker and is usually their final word on the subject. Try to look after your accounts – they’re probably your most valuable assets as a matched bettor.
Return to Player (RTP): This is the total amount you receive for a winning bet, including the stake being returned. Winnings + Stake = Returns.
Risk-Free (see Matched Betting): Matched betting in a nutshell! With gambling, you bet an amount of money and if the bet wins, you win more back. However, if it loses, you lose your money. With matched betting, you eliminate the risk of losing your money by matching your back and lay bets and using the free offers offered by bookmakers.
A horse (or greyhound) entered in a race under another’s name – usually a good runner replacing a poorer one.
Rollover (also known as Wagering): The amount of times you’ll need to play or bet before your bonus becomes eligible for withdrawal. The rollover requirement differs depending on the bookie, so make sure you check out their terms and conditions first.
Rule 4 (also known as Tattersall’s Rule 4): Rule 4 occurs when a non-runner is
announced in a horse/greyhound race after the final declarations have been made
and you have taken a fixed odds price. The final declaration stage is usually 24 hours
before the race, although it can be up to 48 hours. Different bookmakers have
different reduction factors so you will need to check to determine the new equivalent
The official Tattersalls Rule 4 deductions, as applied by all UK bookies, are as follows:
- a) If the current odds of the non-runner are 1/9 or shorter at the time the non-runner withdraws
from the race, then 90p in £/E/$ is deducted (or 90% of winnings)
- b) If over 2/11 up to and including 2/17, 85% of winnings deducted
- c) If over 1/4 up to and including 1/5, 80% of winnings deducted
- d) If over 3/10 up to & including 2/5, 70% of winnings deducted
- e) If over 2/5 up to and including 8/15, 65% of winnings deducted
- f) If over 8/15 up to and including 8/13, 60% of winnings deducted
- g) If over 8/13 up to and including 4/5, 55% of winnings deducted
- h) If over 4/5 up to and including 20/21, 50% of winnings deducted
- i) If over 20/21 up to and including 6/5, 45% of winnings deducted
- j) If over 6/5 up to and including 6/4, 40% of winnings deducted
- k) If over 6/4 up to and including 7/4, 35% of winnings deducted
- l) If over 7/4 up to and including 9/4, 30% of winnings deducted
- m) If over 9/4 up to and including 3/1, 25% of winnings deducted
- n) If over 3/1 up to and including 4/1, 20% of winnings deducted
- o) If over 4/1 up to and including 11/2, 15% of winnings deducted
- p) If over 11/2 up to and including 9/1, 10% of winnings deducted
- q) If over 9/1 up to and including 14/1, 5% of winnings deducted
- r) If the non-runner is over 14/1 then there is no deduction
This is the distance from the home turn (or last obstacle) to the winning post.
This is the withdrawal of a competitor.
The horse, greyhound, football team etc. that you the customer have predicted as a winner of a particular event.
This is a race in which the eventual winner must be offered for sale by auction.
A bookmaker’s expert who calculates payouts.
Shortening the Odds
A bookmaker’s reduction of the odds offered in the face of heavy betting.
Sign Up Offer (see Welcome Offer): Because there are so many bookmakers jostling to be noticed, they need some way to encourage customers to sign up with them instead of someone else. This is where the sign up offers come in. They differ from bookie-to-bookie but are usually along the lines of Bet £X, Get £X.
The male parent of a horse.
Slots: A type of casino game.
Insiders’ bets or the insiders themselves.
Stake: The amount of money bet on a particular selection in a wager.
Stake unit (or ‘Unit Stake’)
The value of each bet in a multiple bet. Example: A Lucky 15 (15 bets) totalling £15, has a Unit Stake of £1, as there is £1 invested on each of the bets within the Lucky 15.
What a 5 year-old male horse is called. Prior to this they are referred to as Colts.
Stalls are a row of compartments designed to give all the runners in a flat race an even start.
Championship for Ice Hockey in the U.S.
Starting Price (SP): In horse racing, the starting price refers to the odds given on a particular horse at the time a race begins. The starting price is usually set by consensus by an appointed panel, who observes the fluctuation in prices at the racetrack before the race.
This is a selection backed significantly on the morning of a race, causing its odds to shorten markedly.
A Steeplechase (or Chase) is a form of National Hunt racing, over fences that are a minimum of four and a half feet high. The fences are more rigid than the other types of races, and the race is between two miles and four and a half miles long. The most prestigious Chase event is the Grand National.
If there are any suspected infringements of the ‘Rules of Racing’ the Stewards hold an investigation. These are carried out in a similar manner to Objections.
Another name for Injury Time.
Championship for American Football in the U.S.
This is any bet that has very little chance of losing.
This is a method of betting, usually mathematically based, used by a punter to try and get an advantage (if successful!).
If a horse is withdrawn without coming Under Starters Orders, and there is insufficient time to re-form the betting market, backers of the withdrawn horse are entitled to their stakes back. However, deductions are then made to winning bets. Details of the relevant deductions can be found in our full Rule 4 article.
Tax Free: In the UK, winnings from gambling (either online or in-shop) are completely tax free and don’t need to be declared as part of your tax return. Betting Duty (which stood at 6.75%) was abolished in 2001 in an attempt to persuade UK bookmakers not to move their operations overseas.
Terms and Conditions (T&Cs): The rules that a customer must agree to abide in order to use a service. Terms and conditions vary from bookmaker to bookmaker and offer to offer, so always make sure you check them before placing any bets.
The sign language which UK bookmakers use to communicate with each other on-course.
The selections chosen by an expert to bet on (also known as “picks”).
A person who gives or sells to bettors his estimate of likely winners of a race, game or event (also known as a Tout).
A breathing aid used on horses that has a strip of cloth to stabilise the tongue and stop it from sliding over the bit.
‘The Horserace Totalisator Board’ otherwise known as “The Tote”. A body in the UK set up to operate pool-betting on all racecourses.
A racecourse information board that displays approximate odds, betting totals, payout prices and other information necessary to the punter.
Tote bets are based on a pool. This means the returns for a particular selection is based on the amount of money that has been paid into the particular pool, for example the win or place pool. For this reason the actual amount returned on the bet can only be calculated after the race when all the money is in. The dividend which is displayed on screens and shops and in race courses is only an approximation of what the return or ‘dividend’ will be.
Returns from a tote pool (also known as a Dividend). Calculated by taking the total stake in each pool (after the take out) and dividing it by the number of winning tickets. A dividend is declared to a fixed stake, for various win, place and forecast pools.
In a Tournament, all participants are competing to come first and therefore win the Tournament. Competitions, leagues, races and championships are also classed as Tournaments. In the US, Tournaments are known as Futures.
To give or sell betting advice or one who does so (also known as a Tipster).
If a trainer runs two or more horses in the same race, the Trainer’s Selected is the one that starts at the shortest price.
In greyhound racing, greyhounds start from numbered boxes (usually one to six) which are called traps.
Treble – A bet consisting of three selections, all of which must win for the wager/bettor to be successful.
Tricast – A wager/bet picking the first three finishers in exact order.
This is the race distance.
Trixie – A Trixie consists of four bets involving three selections in different events. i.e. three doubles plus one treble.
horses are in the stalls for a flat race (or have lined up at the start for a jumps
race) they are said to be ‘under starter’s orders’. This is because the jockeys are
waiting for the starter’s signal to begin the race.
A selection that receives a point start in a Handicap, or a selection that is quite unlikely to win.
These are commonly used in North America and Canada when betting on US sports. To calculate the Payoff on US Prices, convert the US Prices to decimal prices as follows:
- For a Favourite, for example -1.25, divide 100 by 125 and add 1 = 1.80
- For an Underdog, for example +1.25, divide 125 by 100 and add 1 = 2.25
$10 at -125 gives you a Total Return of 10 x 1.80 = 18
$10 at +125 gives you a Total Return of 10 x 2.25 = $22.50
Value Bet: The holy trinity of things to look for when it comes to placing a worthwhile bet are cost, risk and benefit. As the name suggests, a value bet is one packed with high value for money.
Variance (see Return to Player): This is a term used to describe how payouts are spread on casino games. For example, two different slot machines may have the same RTP but one may have a low variance, paying small wins frequently, whereas the other may have a high variance, paying larger wins, but less frequently.
Verify: When you open a bookmaker account, you might need to verify your personal details. How and when will depend on the bookie, but you may be asked to provide a copy of your passport or a photograph of yourself holding a document in order to verify your account before you are able to withdraw any funders.
A device fitted to a horse’s head which restricts it’s field of vision in order to help it’s concentration.
Void Bet: A bet which is declared invalid. If this happens, your stake will be returned, which means that you won’t win any money but you won’t lose it either.
A void bet can happen when you are backing a player to score a first goal but he gets injured in the warm-up and doesn’t even make the starting line-up, or when the game you placed a bet on gets called off. Bookmakers usually state that any bet resulting from their own mistake when quoting the odds shall also be declared void, but check their terms and conditions first, just to make sure.
A walk-over occurs when only one participant runs in the race. In order to collect the prize money the participant must go through the normal procedure. For settling purposes the winner of a walk-over is considered to be a non-runner.
The “weighed in” signal is given when the weight of all jockeys has been checked after the race. It is the duty of the Clerk of the Scales to confirm they weigh approximately the figure allocated to their mounts. After this signal the result cannot be changed from a betting point of view.
The term used to describe a 1st place finish.
Win-Draw-Win (WDW): Usually referring to football, WDW refers to the three possible outcomes of a sports fixture (home win, draw and away win). This market is settled in the 90 minutes of play (plus stoppage time if any is added). However, extra time does not count, so if there is a draw at 90 minutes and then a team scores at 125 minutes, the draw from regular time stands.
Winnings: The matched betting profits you receive for winning bet (excluding the
Withdrawn: The decision to remove a horse from a race before it starts (either
before or after coming under starter’s orders).World Series
Championship for baseball.
Taken to mean ‘a draw’ on a soccer betting coupon.
Yankee – A multiple bet consisting of 11 bets (six doubles, four trebles and one four-fold) on four selections in different events.
Yield: The rate of return money won to money invested or bet. Yield is a percentage calculation of the betting efficiency, depending on the selected bets and odds for the match.