How to bet on Greyhound Racing
Greyhound racing is a very popular sport in the UK, with people placing bets on the action seven days a week. Whether it’s a social night out at the local track or betting on the daily races from all over the UK, understanding the sport and the different bets you can have will go a long way to helping you be successful.
One thing that keeps things simple with greyhound racing is that the number of runners usually never changes. Six dogs are declared for each race, and a number of reserves are waiting should any dog be taken out of a race. On the odd occasion where a dog pulls out late or the race is a competition, the race will go down to five runners but usually you will see six dogs lining up at the start in the UK.
Greyhound Racing in the UK
The main event on the greyhound calendar is the Derby, which is run in the summer every year. In 2019 the Derby has a new home at Nottingham, which offers a great central location and is a tough staying track, ideal for galloping dogs so we should see a very fair competition.
On top of this, the bigger tracks will also stage their own Category One competitions where the best dogs from around the country will aim to win the prize, and these are spread nicely throughout the year. Young dogs get the opportunity to race against fellow youngsters in puppy competitions, with the Puppy Derby at Henlow, the Midlands Puppy Derby at Monmore and the Northern Puppy Derby at Newcastle all prestigious events where you are likely to see the stars of the future taking each other on.
Regular meetings takes place at the tracks and these can be at morning, in the afternoon or at night depending on the coverage they are getting. Many bookmakers offer a live streaming service that allows you to watch the action if you place a bet with them.
Greyhound Racing Grades
When you look at the racecard you will notice that each race has a grade. The grade will be a letter followed by a number, unless it is an open race which is open to any dog, and that is graded as ‘OR’. The letter at the start of the grade refers to the distance, and has no impact on the actual grade itself. For example an A1 is a top graded race that is a circuit long, while a D1 is a top graded sprint race, which is only ran over half of the track.
The thing you need to focus on when looking at grades is the number, with 1 being the top grade at any track, and 10 being the lowest. If a greyhound wins a race then they are very likely to be upgraded for that, which puts them up against better dogs next time they run. It is also worth noting that greyhounds can be downgraded, this happens if they are running poorly to give them more chance of winning. Both angles are worth looking at from a betting point of view, young dogs who are going through the grades are often worth following while those downgraded because they have had trouble in running could be worth looking at if they can get a clear run in a lesser grade.
Win Betting on Greyhound Racing
The most popular way to bet on the dogs is to place a win bet with the bookmaker. This is as simple as betting goes, choose a dog and back it to win, if it wins then you collect your winnings. Those looking for a simple way into betting on greyhound should stick with this, you won’t go wrong and you should find yourself winning on a regular basis, even if you only have a brief understanding of the form book. Each way betting is available, although with only six runners in each race, the place terms are only first and second.
Forecast and Tricast Betting
If you are looking to land a big win then forecast and tricast betting is the way to go, although it is much tougher to back a winner using this method. A forecast is where you predict which dog will finish first and which will finish second, while the tricast requires you to predict the first, second and third. Not only do you need to find the winner, but you also need the right dogs in second and third if you do a tricast.
When placing a forecast on two dogs, if you specify the finishing order this is a straight forecast and costs you one unit stake. However, if you would like to cover yourself you can back a revered forecast, which covers your bet both ways and costs you two times your stake (a £1 reverse forecast is £2 in total). The other way to bet is to combine different dogs in a combination forecast. For example, you can pick three dogs to come first or second in any order and if any two of them do that then you will have a winner. This costs six times your unit stake, so a £1 combination forecast would be £6 in total.
Tote Greyhound Betting
Whether you are at the track or sat at home you can bet on the tote if you wish. This works exactly the same way as it does in horse racing, and you are paid out a tote dividend from the pool on your bet. If you are betting on the tote then forecasts are known as exactas, while tricasts are called trifectas or trio’s.
Greyhound Betting Strategies
If you are looking at a greyhound racecard for the first time it can be a little daunting. However, there is no need to panic when doing this, try to take in as much as you can, all of the info you will need is on the page. The most important section to look at if you are a beginner is the times, this is how fast the greyhounds have all been running in their most recent races. While greyhound racing is a far more complex sport than this, the name of the game is to get around the track in the quickest time, and backing the dog that has done that recently is never a bad idea.
For those that want to take a more in-depth approach then you will also find comments from previous races so you can see if dogs have been hampered or had a clear run, the grade they have been running in and the trap they have been drawn in, all of which can have a huge impact on a dog’s chances in the upcoming race.
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