There are certain key factors any punter must use when betting trifectas. One is to use “banker” selections; the other is to always throw in horses at good odds.

It’s a sensible thing to avoid making favourites your banker selections. Even if they win, the return is very likely to be poor and certainly not a viable long term proposition.

So, keep in mind that value bankers are the #1 priority. I’m referring to horses in the 5/1 to 10/1 bracket. Those runners that might end up fourth or fifth favourites.

Here are some trifecta approaches on staking lines that I think can at least provide some food for thought.

THE TWIN BANKERS’ PLAN

1. Find two banker selections (don’t go below 3/1).
2. The two bankers are taken to WIN the race.
3. The two bankers are also used to run second, along with a third selection.
4. The previous three selections are used for third plus a fourth selection.
5. The combination is: AB-ABC-ABCD costing \$8.

THE TRIO BANKERS’ PLAN

1. Find three banker selections (can include the favourite but must include at least one horse at 6/1 or longer).
2. The three bankers are taken to WIN the race.
3. The three bankers plus a fourth selection are used to run second.
4. These four selections and a fifth selection are taken to fill third.
5. The combination is: ABC-ABCD-ABCDE costing \$27.

THE QUARTET BANKERS

1. Find four banker selections (can include the favourite but must include at least two horses at 6/1 or longer).
2. The four bankers are taken to fill first and second places.
3. The four bankers are used to fill third plus a fifth selection.
4. The combination is: ABCD-ABCD-ABCDE costing \$36.

THE \$12 SPECIAL

1. Find one banker selection (suggested that this banker be at least 5/1 or longer).
2. The banker is used to WIN the race only.
3. Select three horses to fill second and third places.
4. Select two more horses for third place.
5. The combination is: A-BCD-BCDEF costing \$12.

THE \$20 SPECIAL

1. Find one banker selection (suggested that this banker be at least 5/1 or longer).
2. The banker is used to WIN the race only.
3. Select four horses to fill second and third places.
4. These four horses and another two selections are used to fill third.
5. The combination is: A-BCDE-BCDEFG costing \$20.

THE QUINELLA BANKERS

1. Find two banker selections (do not use the favourites and try to avoid runners at 3/1 and under).
2. The bankers are used for first and second placings only.
3. Find two other selections to fill third place.
4. The combination is: AB-AB-CD costing \$4.

The Quinella Banker approach is a cheap one but it can lead to plenty of collects for the astute punter who can pick the eyes out of a field and come up with a pair of runners capable of taking the quinella. Your only task then is to pick the horses that can run third.

The fullest extension of this idea is to do the tried and proven AB-AB-FIELD bet. That is, you take your bankers to win and run second and then you grab the rest of the field to fill the third spot.

This approach can lead to some very big returns, especially if a bolter happens to get up and run third. If you use this approach in a field of, say, 12 runners, your bet is actually: AB-AB-10, totaling \$20. So it would cost you only \$60 to put the bankers into all three place spots with the Field, so as long as they ran in the first three you’d get the trifecta because you’d always have the field going for you in the other slot.

You would have the Field to win from AB-AB, you would have AB to win and Field to run second, AB to run third, plus the original AB-AB-Field bet.

Trifecta logistics

• How you frame your trifecta bet is all important. Try to get your thinking into an orderly approach.
• Measure each race carefully. Sometimes it will be obvious that your best approach is to use a win banker only.

Other times, you may need three or four bankers to ensure you can secure the win slot. Obviously, the more runners in a race the harder your task but the greater the likely rewards.

• Stay within your comfort zone. Don’t be tempted into throwing too many runners into the mix unless you are really confident a massive divvie is in the offing. Remember, too, that the smaller the field the less likely is a big return.

By Jon Hudson

PRACTICAL PUNTING – AUGUST 2007