Trifectas continue to be the most appealing form of 'exotic' betting to Aussie punters - and little wonder. They offer the chance of big returns for a relatively small outlay.

Why is it, then, that punters continue to miss out on landing long-term profits following trifectas? Much of the problem lies with the manner in which cash is invested.

The ubiquitous 'box trifecta' is the root of the problem. While it offers a 'safety first' approach, the truth is that the multiple combinations are wrecking any value that might be there.

Professionals snub the 'box' angle. They prefer the 'key' bet method of going for a win on one horse and then linking other runners with this selection. There can be great savings with this approach.

For instance, a three-horse 'box' costs \$6. Yet if you chose one of the three as a banker, you could then have the following \$2 linkup: A to win from B to run 2nd and C to run 3rd. A to win from C to run 2nd and B to run 3rd.

You have slashed your outlay from \$6 to only \$2. If you still wanted to invest \$6 you could take each trifecta for \$3, meaning if you land the right result you'll get the trifecta three times instead of once.

Let's say the trifecta on A-B-C paid \$45. Using the 'box' you get it once for your \$6. But using the latter mentioned approach you would land it three times for the same outlay - a return of \$135 for your \$6.

The next alternative is to go for 'graded multiples' - examples of which are given in the combination lists on this page. These tell you how much it will cost you to link key selections with various numbers of other runners.

I can assure you they offer you a far better chance of long-term profits than by taking the option of the 'box' approach.

You don't have to stick to just one banker. You can take two and then link them with others. And what about the old A-B-Field method? It's a beauty, provided you are very confident of landing the first two placings with your main two banks.

A to win with B to run 2nd and Field to run 3rd.
B to win with A to run 2nd and Field to run 3rd.

Depending on the size of the field, this can be a cheap bet. If it's a field of 12, the cost is only \$10. The chance exists for huge payouts if your 'quinella' selections are at value prices.

Study the following multiple combinations carefully.

THE TRIFECTA BETTING TABLES

MULTIPLE TRIFECTAS (A)
(Key horse with various numbers of other runners to fill 2nd and 3rd placings. Starters selected for 2nd also selected for 3rd. Assumed 50c units).

SELECTIONS \$ SELECTIONS \$
1x2x21.001x4x58.00
1x2x32.001x4x610.00
1x2x43.001x4x712.00
1x2x54.001x4x814.00
1x2x65.001x5x510.00
1x2x76.001x5x612.50
1x2x87.001x5x715.00
1x3x33.001x5x817.50
1x3x44.501x6x615.00
1x3x56.001x6x718.00
1x3x67.501x6x821.00
1x3x79.001x7x721.00
1x3x810.501x7x824.50
1x4x46.001x8x828.00

MULTIPLE TRIFECTAS (B)
(Starters selected to win are also selected for 2nd and 3rd). Assumed 50c units.

SELECTIONS \$ SELECTIONS \$
2x2x3 1.002x4x612.00
2x2x42.002x4x715.00
2x2x53.002x4x8 18.00
2x2x64.002x5x512.00
2x2x7 5.00 2x5x6 16.00
2x2x8 6.002x5x720.00
2x3x3 2.002x5x824.00
2x3x4 4.002x5x928.00
2x3x56.002x6x620.00
2x3x6 8.002x6x7 25.00
2x3x710.002x6x8 30.00
2x3x8
12.002x7x7 30.00
2x4x46.002x7x836.00
2x4x59.00 2x8x842.00

STANDOUT TRIFECTAS
(One starter selected to win with 2 or more chosen to fill 2nd and 3rd).

NUMBER OF STARTERS
SELECTED FOR 2ND
AND 3RD PLACINGS
\$
21.00
33.00
46.00
510.00
615.00
721.00
828.00
936.00
1045.00
1155.00
1266.00

By Denton Jardine

PRACTICAL PUNTING - MARCH 1995