Exacta and quinella special.

Exacta betting has become popular among New South Wales punters in recent times. As time goes by, other States will be introducing this form of betting.

An exacta, of course, is merely a tougher way of landing a quinella. With a quinella, you can nominate two horses and if they finish 1st and 2nd you win the bet. An exacta, as its name implies, calls for a greater degree of accuracy - you have to get the first two in the correct order.

Naturally, exactas offer the prospect of better dividends than for quinellas, which is merely a reflection of the fact that it is harder to land an exacta than it is a quinella.

Let's look at some recent examples:

Randwick, September 29

7 121.60471.20
8 7.7016.70

This example, albeit only one meeting, gives you a pretty good guide to the kind of difference you can expect between quinella and exacta returns. What it says, in fact, is that exactas are worth chasing. If you can get it right, the returns are big.

So how do we land exactas? And how do we land enough of them to maintain a profit level throughout the season? Pertinent points indeed. Obviously, if you're the sort of punter who likes to include favourites in your betting action, then you are never really going to land substantial dividends.

The presence of a favourite in a quinella or an exacta almost guarantees the bet is 'killed' as far as a big divvy is concerned. Unless you have the skill to link a real roughie with the favourite – say 20/1 and longer.

My idea has always been to skirt around the favourites, and to link up the value runners. I've found it pays off. Not that I discard all favourites only those at ridiculously poor value (say 6/4 and lower). It's just not worth chasing these poor value runners.

With this in mind, the following selection system is recommended for exacta and quinella betting:

(For use only on city midweek and, Saturday, public holiday meetings)

  1. Bet only on 3yo races, Open and Welter handicaps, and Mares' races.
  2. Ignore any pre-post favourite listed at 6/4 or lower in the morning newspaper betting market.
  3. Ignore any runner which did not run in the first 7 last start (that is, any horse with 8, 9 or 0 for its last start).
  4. Of the remaining horses, choose the horse with the highest prizemoney earnings. It becomes a Banker win selection.
  5. From the remaining horses, choose the pre-post favourite, the second and third favourites, to link with the Banker selection. (If the Banker is one of the first three favourites, then go to the horse on the fourth line of betting. If the pre-post favourite has been eliminated for being too short-priced, then start with the 2nd favourite etc.)
  6. When betting, use the Banker with the others in exactas. (That is, Banker to win with, say, 1, 2, 3 for 2nd). This is a low-cost bet with the ability to haul in some big wins.

This selection system provides the opportunity of landing some excellent exacta returns. You have the horse which has proven itself a winner, as reflected in its prize-money earnings, and you are linking it with three well-fancied runners - and in many races you are operating on a 'big return-fair risk' manner by ignoring the short-priced favourite.

The Banker bet, I have found, often comes in at most attractive odds, leading to some juicy exacta dividends.

My next system can be used for both quinella and exacta betting. My preference is to shoot for the exactas, because of the bigger returns, but those punters whose TABs do not offer exacta bets can simply play the quinellas.

The system is a proven one, coming up with a generous flow of winners and placegetters. The following are the rules:

(Recommended for operation on city tracks, midweek, Saturdays & public holidays)

  1. Consider only those horses listed between 2/1 and 5/1 in the pre-post betting market.
  2. To qualify further, a horse must have a win strike rate of 20 per cent or more, AND a place strike of 50 per cent or more.
  3. To qualify further, after fulfilling Rule 2, a horse must have finished within 5 lengths of the winner in at least one of its last two starts, or you can consider one win from its last two, starts as sufficient.
  4. After fulfilling rules 2 and 3, a horse must then have had its last start within the previous 21 days (inclusive) on a metropolitan track.

The horse that emerges from these rules is your Banker selection for the exacta or quinella. If two or more qualifiers, link both in an exacta or quinella bet.

If you have only one final qualifier, and in most instances this is what you will have, you link it with the top four horses in the betting market. You can put in the favourite as long as it is priced at 7/4 or longer (that is, ignore any favourite listed at 6/4 and lower).

The selection itself, of course, will always be priced between 2/1 and 5/1, so the value should be there, providing there is not a substantial betting move for it just before the race!

Finally, let's look at how the average punter can find 'longshots' to place in quinella and exacta bets. Securing these windfall horses is not easy, but it can be done. You do, though, need to be prepared to study the formguide a bit.

Some years ago in P.P.M. we published a neat little system called Surprise Packets, which gave some good pointers to finding longshot winners. The following are the rules:

(For use on city and country/provincial tracks any day)

  1. To qualify, a horse must be having its 3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th, 7th, 8th or 9th run of its present campaign.
  2. To qualify further, it must have been unplaced (4th or worse) on a city or country/provincial track at its previous start with an SP (starting price) of 12/1 or under.
  3. To qualify further, as a super special, it must come from a minor trainer's stable. That is, a 'battler's' stable - not from the yards of the Freedmans, Hayes etc. Usually, you will be looking at country trainers with only a small team of horses.

Using these longshots as 'bankers' you can link them with well-fancied runners and shoot for some big payouts. From our records, the qualifying horses from the Surprise Packets system will usually be at good odds.

If you have more than two final qualifiers, it's probably wisest to ignore the race. If there are two qualifiers, you can use both as Bankers in your quinellas and exactas, as long as they are at good odds (say 6/1 and longer).

Using these approaches, you will get plenty of action - and many good results. In fact, some of the returns are likely to be in the high two-figure and even three-figure areas.

By Richard Hartley Jnr