ACROSS THE BOARD: A bet on a horse to win, place and show. If the horse wins, the player collects three ways; if second, two ways; and if third, one way, losing the win and place bets.
BOXED BET: Betting all possible combinations in a exotic wager such as exacta or trifecta.
BREAKAGE: In pari-mutuel payoffs which are rounded out to a nickel or dime, those pennies that are left over. Breakage is generally split between the track and state and, in some cases, breeding or other funds, in varying proportions.
BRIDGE JUMPER: A person who bets an unusually large sum on a single horse, like $100,000 to show in hopes of cashing at the minimum $2.10 payout. Refers to the fact that if they lose they may be jumping off the nearest bridge.
COUPLED ENTRY: Horses that belong to one owner or under one trainer, running on the same race are grouped or “coupled” together so that when you bet on one you also get the other. Simply put, two horses running as one. Example: "1" – Horse One, "1A" – Horse One A.
DAILY DOUBLE: Type of wager calling for the selection of winners of two consecutive races, usually the first and second.
DEAD HEAT: A tie between two or more horses at the finish of the race. Usually these can be separated by the photo finish camera, but sometimes they are so close you can't. Improvements in photo finish technology have made this increasingly rare.
EXACTA (or PERFECTA): A wager in which the first two finishers in a race, representing separate betting interests, in exact order of finish, must be picked. It is called "exactor" (for "exact order") in Canada.
FIELD HORSE (or MUTUEL FIELD): Two or more starters running as a single betting unit, when there are more entrants than positions on the “totalizator” board can accommodate (generally 24 +)
GRANDSLAM:Pick a horse to finish in the top three in three straight races, capped by the winner of the fourth race in the sequence. If there is no show wagering in one of the first three legs, the horse must finish second.
IN THE MONEY: Finishing first, second or third.
INQUIRY: Reviewing the race to check into a possible infraction of the rules. Also, a sign flashed by officials on tote board on such occasions.
KEY: This type of wager can be used when you feel that one of your selections will finish in a certain position, either first, second or third. The horse you select to finish in a certain position is your “key” horse. The other horses you have selected may then finish in any order an you are a winner.
- EXAMPLE: player asks for “a Trifecta, key the 3 over the 4,5,6” – you will not need to use any special keys or wager types to place this wager. You will simply enter a Trifecta with the 3 in the first position and the 4,5,6 in the second and third positions.
- $2 Trifecta Part Wheel -the player will request to key the 4 with 2,3,5 with 2,3,5,6. This wager will not require any special keys to be placed. You will simply enter a $2 Trifecta with the 4 in the first position, the 2,3,5 in the second position and the 2,3,5,6 in the third position.
LOCK: Slang for a "sure thing" winner. If a player requests to Lock In a horse over other horses, this means to Key the horse.
MINUS (NEGATIVE) POOL: A mutuel pool caused when one horse is so heavily played that, after deductions of state tax and commission, there is not enough money left to pay the legally prescribed minimum on each winning bet. The racing association has to make up the difference to pay the minimums.
ODDS-ON: Odds of less than even money. In England it is simply called "on," thus a horse "5-4 on" is actually at odds of 4-5.
OFFICIAL: Sign displayed when result is confirmed. Also racing official.
OMNI-SWINGER: Pick 2 of the first 3 finishers of a race in any order. There will be a separate payout for each winning combination (1st & 2nd, 1st & 3rd, 2nd & 3rd). You have to have at least 2 horses you pick finish in the top 3 - but if all 3 of your horses finish in the top three, then you will get all three payouts!
ON THE BOARD: Finishing among the first three.
ON THE NOSE: Betting a horse to win only.
PENTAFECTA: Super Hi-5 - correctly select the horses who will be the first five finishers of the race
PHOTO FINISH: A result so close it is necessary to use a finish-line camera to determine order of finish. It is worth noting that the finish line is located at the mirror, not the large decorative white post in its vicinity.
PICK THREE (or more): A type of wager in which the winners of all the included (consecutive) races must be selected.
PLACE: Crosses the finish line second
QUINELLA: Wager in which the first two finishers must be picked, but payoff is made no matter which of the two wins and which runs second. Example: a$5 Quinella 2 wt 4wager is a winner if the 2 finishes first and the 4 finishes second or if the 4 finishes first and the 2 finishes second.
Some tracks use the Spanish spelling "Quiniela". Not offered at many tracks as the exacta box makes it redundant.
SHOW: Crosses the finish line third
SUPERFECTA: A wager where you have to pick the first four finishers, representing separate betting interests, in exact order.
TAKE (or TAKEOUT): Commission deducted from mutuel pools which is shared by the track and local and state governing bodies in the form of tax.
TRIFECTA: A wager picking the first three finishers, representing separate betting interests, in exact order. Canadian tracks use the term "triactor".
WIN: Cross the finish line first.
WHEEL / PART WHEEL: Generally a wheeled wager will accompany a “keyed” horse. The other horses selected may then finish in any order.
- Example: You want to bet an Exacta and you like the #5 horse to win, but aren’t sure which of the other 7 runners will come in the second position. Instead of making 6 separate Exacta bets (5-1, 5-2, 5-3, 5-4, etc.), you can ask for a “$2 Exacta wheel, key 5 over ALL” = $12.00
- Part Wheel: If you like a horse to win, but several horses to finish in the second, third or fourth positions – but do not want to cover every combination. A part wheel reduces the number of possible combinations while still simplifying the bet.
- An example would be a “$2 Daily Double part wheel, 5 with 1, 2, 5 and 7”. This covers four possible combinations; 5 and 1, 5 and 2, 5 and 5, & 5 and 7
- $2 Exacta Part Wheel2 with 3,4,5,6 = $8.00 (four combinations)
- 2-3, 2-4, 2-5 ,2-6
- The 2 is also “keyed” on top
- $2 Exacta Part Wheel 3,4,5,6 with 2 = $8.00 (four combinations)
- $2 Trifecta Part Wheel 4 with 2,3,5 with 2,3,5,6 = $9.00 (9 possible combinations)
- Another example: You like the #2 and #3 to finish either first or second and the #4, #5 or #6 to finish third. This would a possible 6 combinations (2-3-4, 3-2-4-, 2-3-5, 3-2-5, 2-3-6 and 3-2-6). Instead of making all 6 combinations separately you can ask for “$1 Trifecta Part-Wheel, 2,3 with 2, 3 with 4, 5, 6” =$6.00