Structuring your bets is another important piece in the puzzle of professional betting. A lot of the articles I write are focussed on finding the contenders. This is because I believe this to be one of the hardest parts of profitable betting. You should have the winner in your contenders at least 75% of the time.
This is different to betting on the winner 75% of the time, which you are very unlikely to be doing. Once you have your contenders you then need to decide which runners you will be placing your bets on and how you are going to structure your bets.
While these are two different topics there is a blending between them that makes them hard to completely separate.
Personally, I very seldom bet on just one runner in a race. There are a few reasons for this but the main two are that there is usually more than one of my contenders offering value., meaning that I can maximise the volume I bet by having more than one bet per race. The second reason, is that it also helps to keep the strike rate high and provides for a less volatile bankroll.
What ways are there to structure your bets and what do I mean by bet structure?
Bet structure is how you place your bets. You could just do a single win bet on one runner, dutch runners, flat bet multiple runners, win bet on one runner and bet distance to winner on the others, place bet, bet without the favourite in the race and many more betting markets and combinations.
A badly structured bet can actually lose you money even when you select the winner. For example, if you were to place three flat win bets on different runners and the winner had odds of 2.50 then you have laid out 3 units and won back 2.50. A loss of 0.50 units even though you selected the winner! This is poor bet structuring and either the winner shouldn’t have been included or the bet needed to be put together differently.
If you are not yet making a profit from your betting then I would recommend that you look to bet on multiple runners in a race because you will find that it keeps losing streaks lower which helps you to keep the professionalism towards your betting. Do not feel that you are cheating by selecting more than one runner to win, if you are making a profit then that is all that matters.
Three selections is usually a good place to start and if you have more than five possible contenders then I suggest that you leave the race alone. If you have a highly competitive field then it is safer to leave it alone.
Assuming that you are betting on three selections then the simplest way is to dutch your bet. This is the process of betting multiple runners for different amounts (based on their odds) so that you win the same amount if any of them wins.
Let’s have a quick look at a profitable strategy:
- Find the contenders in the race.
- If there are more than five contenders then move on to the next race.
- From your five contenders look at the betting market, if any have odds higher than 30.00 then remove these from your selections. If you still have more than three contenders then if any are clearly not offering value, remove these from your selections. You may still have too many selections left, calculate your dutch bet and if you can make over a 5% return on investment from it then bet, otherwise remove any that have more faults than the rest or leave the race and move to the next.
- Place your dutch bet.
Using this strategy you should be able to achieve over a 50% strike rate and a minimum of 5% ROI. By keeping your bet structure the same each time you do not need to worry about how to place the bets in the moment because everything is already planned. With more experience you can begin to vary this structure in order to optimise the profit.