This month we are going to move away from the usual selection plans and take a look at staking methods. In particular, we will be looking at quinellas this month and trifectas next month.

This month's quinella staking method expects you to have six selections per race. Or to be more specific, six selections in those races in which you will be backing the quinella.

In some races, for example very open betting races, you may not be confident in coming up with six selections. In others, for example those with only eight runners, six selections maybe too many. We suggest you use the following plan on races with at least 10 runners after scratchings.

How you decide upon the top six selections and their order is up to you. Pre-post market position is a popular method. Tipster polls or rated markets are others.

Whatever method you use, we suggest you mark off the top six selections in each race after scratchings. If you are using pre-post markets or tipster polls then we suggest you use the Weekend Australian for Saturday races. In the case of tipster polls you will have to calculate your own consensus column as the paper only lists the top three (do this by using three points for first, two points for second and one point for third).

Now that you have your top six selections per race, make sure you have them in order. The easiest way to identify their order is to place a number from 1 to 6 against their names in the newspaper formguide, If any horses are in equal positions then we suggest you use win percentages to separate them.

Finally, the most important part. Backing your top six selections in quinellas.

To assist us in describing the staking, we will assume your top selection is A, second top is B, third top is C, fourth top is D, fifth top is E and sixth top is F.

What you then do is take the following four bets:

  1. Box the top three selections. That is A with B with C.
  2. Take the top pick as a standout for first with the fourth top, fifth top and sixth top selection. That is A with D, A with E and A with F.
  3. Take the second pick as a standout for first with the fourth top, fifth top and sixth top selection. That is B with D, B with E and B with F. 1
  4. Take the third pick a's a standout for first with the fourth top, fifth top and sixth top selection. That is C with D, C with E and C with F.

So how much does this cost?

Our boxed three selections results in A with B, A with C and B with C. A total of three combinations for three units.

Our remaining groupings as per (2) to (4) above account for another three combinations each.

All up we have a total of 12 combinations for 12 units.

$12 using $1 units or $6 using 50 cent units.

What we have done is reduce our total outlay by not backing all possible combinations while 'at the same time attempting to maintain our chance of success by concentrating on the more likely combinations.

Many people shy away from thinking that they don't offer the value as trifectas. This is not strictly as although trifectas give the pot for much higher payouts they require greater outlays and have one runs of outs.

The secret to success with quinellas is not betting too many horses any one race. Any more than six your profits will rapidly turn to losses.That's all for this month.

See you next time.

By John O’Sullevan