Exotic Betting Term Meaning

Exotic bets are placed on outcomes which have a lower probability of occurring, and therefore they pay greater returns when they do.

For example, an exotic bet might involve picking the top finishers in three or more races. Since this is substantially more difficult than picking the winner of just one race, the potential payout would be much higher.

Exotic bets come in two main types: horizontal and vertical.

Horizontal Exotic Bets

Horizontal exotic bets take place over multiple races. For example, you might pick the winners of multiple races in a row. These are sometimes known as multi-race bets or ‘pick x’ bets, as in ‘pick 3’ or ‘pick5’.

Vertical Exotic Bets

Vertical exotic bets take place in a single race. For example, you might pick the top three finishers in a given horse race. They’re sometimes called intra-race bets. They often end in ‘cta’, as in  ‘Exacta’ or ‘Trifecta’.

Exotic Bet Types

Exotic bet types are no longer as ‘exotic’ as they once were. In fact, these days they are relatively popular. Here are some of the most common types:

  1. Duet - To win this bet, punters must correctly pick two of the top three winners of a race.
  2. Daily Doubles - Punter’s must correctly pick the winners of two races.
  3. Exacta - Both the winner and runner up (Win and Place) of a given race must be correctly predicted to win an exacta bet.
  4. MultiBets - These involve multiple ‘legs’ or bets across multiple races. Winnings are carried over from previous bets until the sequence is complete. A final payout is calculated after the final bet is settled.
  5. Quadrella - Also known as a ‘quaddie’. Punters must correctly predict the winners of four selected races.

The Pros and Cons of Exotic Bets


  • The potential for astronomical returns relative to the original stake.
  • Exotic bets can be more exciting and interesting than straight bets.
  • Flexi betting is often available with exotic bets. This allows punters to manage risk more effectively.


  • The probability of exotic bets coming good is lower - it’s much more difficult to make multiple correct picks.
  • Exotic bets aren’t always available on every race.
  • Exotic bets can be confusing, especially for newcomers and the uninitiated.

Things to Think About Before Placing Exotic Bets

  • Is flexi betting available? If the cost of a full unit is $100, can you bet $25 for ¼ of the potential payout?
  • What happens if one of your picks is declared a non-runner? Can you select your sub? Is there an automatically nominated sub? Will the percentage return be adjusted? Will a partial refund be given?

The answer to these questions will depend on the individual operator offering the exotic bets.

Exotic Betting FAQ

What are exotic bets?

Exotic bets are types of bets that normally offer higher odds than standard bets. They are often betting markets that are not mainstream.

What are exotic bet types?

Some of the exotic bet types are Duet, Daily Doubles, Exacta, MultiBets and Quadrella.

Get the Freetips App for free!
Get the Freetips App for free!