How To Bet An Exacta In Horse Racing

Posted by Eric Williams on June 10, 2016 in

Well, it doesn’t matter if you’re a longtime horse racing betting aficionado or a casual bettor that just likes to wager on the sport’s Triple Crown races…when it comes to making successful thoroughbred wagers, then you should know there are several keys that all bettors should follow.

Now, let’s explain the different kinds of horse wagers that current and prospective bettors can make.

How To Bet An Exacta In Horse Racing


Do you know what an exacta is?

Simple horse racing wagers feature the traditional win, place and show (first, second and third) wagers. A win wager is exactly that ….wagering on a horse to win the race. A place wager means wagering on a designated horse to finish second or better while a show wager is betting on a horse to finish third or better. The minimum amount that can be wagered for any win, place or show bet is $2.

An ‘across the board’ wager is wagering on a horse to either, win, place or show. For example, if you like the No. 2 horse in the second race (Race 2) at Delaware Race Track. You bet $2 on the 2 horse across the board. The total amount of the wager is $6. The horse finishes second and pays $5 to place and $2.60 to show. You get back $5 on the $2 place wager and $2.60 on the $2 show wager. You get back nothing for the $2 win wager since the horse finished second (place) and not first (win).

Betting on a mount to win, place or show is the most traditional way of wagering on the ponies. The biggest profits, however, come with exotic betting. Exotic wagering means wagering on combinations to occur in any particular race or in multiple races. The most traditional exotic wagers are the daily double, exacta, the trifecta and the superfecta.


When you wager on the first two finishers in a single race, that is called betting an exacta. Let’s say, you like the 5 and 6 in Race 3 at Belmont Park. You make a $2 exacta on the 5 horse to finish first and the 6 can horse to finish second.

Box Exacta

If you box the 3, 5 exacta and the 5 finishes first and the 3 finishes second, you win. A boxed exacta will cost twice the amount of a cold exacta because you’re making two separate bets: 3, 5 and 5, 3. See below for more info on boxes.