Show Bet in Horse Racing – Understanding the Basics

show bet

6 minutes

Last Updated: February 2, 2023

Horse racing is one of those sports that offer a lot of betting options to punters, and some of them might be difficult to understand at first.

In this article, we will break down one of the most interesting bets in horse racing, and that is the show bet.

If you are wondering what does show mean in horse racing, a show bet is a bet that allows punters to try and predict which horse will finish in one of the top three places.

What Is a Show Bet in Horse Racing?

what is show bet in horse racing

In horse racing, punters use the show bet when they want to pick which horse will end in one of the top three places.

As you can see, aside from being simple to understand, the show bet is also one of the easiest horse bets to predict.

Although it is not as popular as the win bet, some punters prefer this bet since it is much easier to make a correct prediction.

For example, if you place a bet on horse 7 to show, you will get paid if horse 7 finishes the race in the 1st, 2nd or 3rd place. If horse 7 finishes below the 3rd place, your show bet will be losing one.

For this reason, the odds for the show bet are always lower than the odds for the win bet.

If you are just starting out with betting on horses, the show bet might be the right way to go, as it minimizes the risk and the variance.

What Is the Minimum Wager on the Show Bet in Horse Racing?

Most online bookmakers keep the minimum amount of money that punters have to risk to place a show bet at $2.

With this said, most online bookmakers have the same limit for the show bet as for the win bet. If you search hard enough, you can also find some bookies that are willing to accept a show bet for $1 or even as little as $.50.

How Much Money Can You Win With A Show Bet?

show bet horse racing

Your winnings with a show bet will depend on the odds for your show bet, and in theory, the winnings should be unlimited.

However, there are some online betting sites that have a limit on winnings, and this rule can have an impact on the amount of money you can win.

Because of this, we advise that you read the terms and conditions on your betting site carefully so that you can avoid unpleasant surprises.

Furthermore, the betting odds for the show bet, like for all other bet types in horse racing, reflect what the bookmakers think about what chances a horse has in a race.

How Can I Place a Show Bet in Horse Racing?

Placing a show bet can range from being straightforward to extremely tricky depending on the betting platform you are using to place bets on horse races.

To help you go through this process seamlessly, we have prepared a list of steps that should help you with placing a show bet on a horse:

  1. Visit your online bookmakers and log in
  2. Open the “Horse racing” section
  3. Open the race that you want to bet on
  4. In the bet slip, select the “To Show” option
  5. Select the horse you believe will end in one of the first three places
  6. Enter the amount you wish to wager
  7. Double-check your selection and the amount you have entered
  8. Select the “Place a bet” option

Top Show Bet Horse Racing Strategies

what does show mean in horse racing

Most of the horse racing strategies that winning punters use can be applied to all horse bet types. We have prepared a list of some of the top strategies that will improve your betting game.

Having Multiple Options Available

One of the mistakes that newbie bettors make is that they tend to stick to one bet type for far too long. While we advise all horse bettors to specialize in certain types of horse bets, depending on their style, you should always keep your options open.

Relying on just one type of bet will limit your betting options significantly which will have a negative impact on your bottom line.

You need to learn that each horse race is different and that some bets can be extremely profitable in one race but not profitable in another.

For this reason, you should always research your betting platform to see how many horse betting options they offer.

Bankroll Management

There are a lot of punters that are great at predicting winners, but because they lack the proper bankroll management they are losing money over the long run.

Having a separate bankroll for betting on horses is the first principle of a winning horse bettor. This is why we advise all of our readers to follow this rule strictly.

It will also allow you to keep your emotions at bay and help you avoid risking the money you can’t afford to lose.

Remember, no matter how good of a horse bettor you are, the variance will hit you from time to time. The only way to survive it with minimum losses is to implement proper bankroll management.

Seasoned punters will tell you never to wager more than 3% of your bankroll on a single race.

Carefully Make Your Picks

We know that it can be tempting to kill your boredom by splashing some of your bankroll on every horse race you get your hands on. However, we must inform you that this is a losing strategy.

Firstly, if you are betting on too many races, you will probably start placing bets without proper research. Hence, you will be losing money with each of those bets over the long run.

Secondly, it is impossible to find value in every single race. Bookmakers do too good of a job to let you find value odds every time you bet. Because they also take commission, you will be losing money with each bet you place on odds that don’t have value.

Do Your Research

what is show bet

If you are planning to be a winning sports bettor, you need to treat betting as a job. This means doing proper research before placing each bet.

This might not be fun, but it is one of the things that separated winnings sports bettors from amateur ones. If you want to be the former, you will have to put in some work.

If you are not familiar with researching horse races, this includes collecting information about the horses, the jockeys, the weather, the track, and so on.

Each additional piece of information you find will help you create a better picture of in which direction the race might go, which will help you with the placement of your bet.

Look for Value Bets

Value betting is one of the principal betting strategies when it comes to horse racing. Placing a value bet means placing a bet on an outcome that is more likely to happen than the odds suggest.

Now, the most effective way to do this is to have accounts on multiple betting sites and search for any discrepancies in the odds.

These small differences in odds can win you a lot of money in the long run.

To do this the right way, you will have to implement proper bankroll management since this betting strategy is highly susceptible to variance.

Final Thoughts on the Show Bet in Horse Racing

For punters looking to get involved with horse racing, the show bet is probably one of the best bets to start with.

This bet type offers decent odds and allows bettors to decrease the variance, which is one of the most important things when you are just starting out.

Additionally, the show bet is one of the easiest bets to place and you should have no problems understanding how it works and what to expect.

Disclaimer: content on may contain affiliate links to online gambling operators and other sites. When you use our affiliate links, we may earn a commission based on our terms of service, but that does not influence the content on the site since we strictly follow our editorial guidelines. Learn more about how we make money and why we always stick to unbiased content. All content on this site is intended for those 21 or older or of legal gambling age in their jurisdiction.

Copyright © iBetMedia UAB. All rights reserved. Content may not be reproduced or distributed without the prior written permission of the copyright holder.