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Sports and Racebook Bet Types

The following are bet types or wagers that sports and racebook commonly accept.

Sports Book Bet Types | Racebook Bet Types

Sports Book Bet Types

The following are the bet types a bettor can place in a sportsbook.

Proposition Bet | Money Line Bet | Spread Bets | Over / Under Bets | Parlays | Teasers | Buying Half a Point

Proposition bet

A prop bet is a bet the SB offers at odds and conditions of its choosing. Prop bets can be exotic bets like which team will score the most touchdowns, which team will shoot the most three pointers, which running back will rush for the most yards, etc. Most prop bets are offered at 11-10 odds, but some of the exotics will be offered at better or worse odds, depending on the bet.

Money Line Bet

A money line bet is a bet on the straight up total of an event or the odds for a straight up prop bet. There are two totals given for either side on a money line bet. A negative and a plus side.

Dallas -170
Washington +150

What this means is that for every $17 you bet on Dallas, you win $10 if they win. For every $10 you bet on Washington, you win $15 if they win. This is the way SB's make money off games by not giving points.

Spread Bets

These are the standard bets to make. Basically a proposition bet at 11-10 odds where the conditions are you give or take points on the team you are betting on hoping that the modified total of your teams score beats the other teams straight score. Bets on the spread are often know as straight bets because they pay even money (minus the 10% vig).

Tampa Bay +19 ½
Miami -19 ½

This means that if you bet on Miami, Miami needs to score at least 20 more points than Tampa to cover. If you bet on Tampa, the score must be at least within 19 for you to win. The bottom team is almost always the home team.

Over/Under Bets

These are also 11-10 bets on what the total of the game will be. If the total posted on a game is 39 ½ points, then you can wager that the total score of both teams added together will be either over or under the posted total. Betting the over is known as "betting on the ball", betting under is known as "betting on the clock".

Chicago -5 ½ -180 1:00 pm
Atlanta +5 ½ +150 42 ½

This gives the money line, the point spread, and the total for the game. It also tells you that Atlanta is the home team, and the game starts at 1:00 pm. As far as I know, this is the standard posting at mosts Books.


A parlay bet is betting on the outcome of two or more events, and getting higher odds than betting on the outcome of both events. The drawback is that the odds aren't right and that you must win all of the events to win the parlay.

# of plays Standard Odds True Odds
2 plays 13-5 3-1
3 plays 6-1 7-1
4 plays 10-1 15-1
5 plays 20-1 31-1
6 plays 40-1 63-1
7 plays 80-1 127-1

The more events parlayed the worse the odds shift in the casinos advantage. The advantage for the player for parlays lies in the fact that he can bet more on the same game (spread and over/under) and he can bet more on two teams who are playing at the same time.

In order to be competitive, some casinos offer ties-win parlay cards. This greatly helps the player. The Las Vegas Hilton SB is one of these.


A teaser bet is a bet where you can move the spread by a set amount, but have to pay to do it. You must bet at least two teams like a parlay and win both. You can move the spread by on all the games by the set amount.

Football Teasers

# of teams 6 pts 6 ½ pts 7 pts
2 teams 11-10 5-6 5-7
3 teams 8-5 3-2 6-5
4 teams 5-2 2-1 9-5
5 teams 4-1 7-2 3-1
6 teams 6-1 5-1 4-1

Basketball Teasers

# of teams 4 pts 4 ½ pts 5 pts
2 teams 11-10 5-6 5-7
3 teams 8-5 3-2 6-5
4 teams 5-2 2-1 9-5
5 teams 4-1 7-2 3-1
6 teams 6-1 5-1 4-1

Buying a half point

You can shift the spread a half point in your favor by laying 6-5 odds instead of the standard 11-10. This is called buying a half point. You usually want to stay away from this bet except on three point spreads on football games. This is also know as "buying the hook".

Racebook Bet Types

The following are the bet types a bettor can place in a racebook.

Win Bet | Place Bet | Show Bet | Combination Bet | Pick 3 | Pick 6 | Quiniela | Perfecta | Trifecta
Superfecta | Daily Double | Jackpot | Parlay | Future | Exotic | Proposition

Straight bet or Single or Win bet

This is the simplest and most common bet. You bet on a winner at given odds. You collect only if your chosen horse is the first across the finish line.


A wager for place means you collect if your selected horse finishes either first or second.


The third horse across the finish line. A wager to show means you collect if your selected horse finishes either first, second or third.

Combination Bet

Combinations cover from two to four horses to win in chosen order.

Pick 3

This wager requires the player to pick the winners of three consecutive races. Some race tracks have a rolling pick 3 which is when the player must pick three races in a row and it continues for the next three races.

Pick 6

This wager requires the player to select the winner of six consecutive races prior to the first race of the pick six. Some tracks place the pick six as the first six races, the middle six races, or the last six races. Many tracks have carry over pools for the pick six that can grow to as high as a million dollars.

Quiniela or Reverse Forecast (UK)

A bet placed on two horses to finish first and second in either order.

Perfecta or Exacta or Straight Forecast (UK)

A bet placed on two horses but they must cross the finish line in exact chosen order.

Trifecta or Tricast or Treble Forecast (UK)

A bet placed on three horses to cross the finish line in exact chosen order.


A bet placed on four horses to cross the finish line in exact chosen order.

Daily Double

Similar to an accumulator you select the winners of the first and second races on that day. You must place your bet before the start of the first race.


Pick six winners in six races to share in a Jackpot prize. The rules and prizes will vary from race track to race track.

Parlay or Accumulator

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. If a race is a tie, postponed or cancelled, your parlay is automatically reduced by one selection; a double parlay becomes a straight bet, a triple parlay becomes a double. A parlay bet can yield huge dividends if won.


A bet on a future event. At the start of each season, the sportsbooks give out odds for horses to win a certain event. The odds change as the race date approaches and in most cases get shorter, but if you win you get paid at the original odds that you took. This is possibly one of the most profitable bets if you have considerable knowledge of the race that you are betting on including the jockeys, and a good sense of judgement.

Exotic Bets

Betting on unusual events. Some sports books post odds and take bets on a wide variety of other sports related events and activities. A few others will take bets on just about anything you can think of.

Proposition Bet or Prop Bet

An offer of bets at odds and conditions chosen by the sportsbook, usually on 'Exotic' bets.

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