Beginner’s Guide to the Superfecta

superfecta One of the most popular bets in horse racing is the superfecta. Horse racing bettors love the wager because it can yield huge payoffs. It is a very difficult wager to hit, requiring the bettor to successfully choose the first four finishers of a given race in exact order.

Those who have not played the superfecta before may find it a little bit hard to understand. That’s why we have produced this beginner’s guide to the superfecta. You will learn what the bet is, how to make it, and strategies that you can use to win.

About the Superfecta

The superfecta in horse racing falls into a class of wager that can be classified as an exotic bet. This simply means that it involves multiple horses in a single race. Exotic horse racing bets were introduced when bettors became bored with the same old straight win, place, and show wagers.


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The wager originated in either Canada or the United States. It has gone on to become very popular in both horse racing jurisdictions. The superfecta ranks just behind the Daily Double where bettors are concerned. On racing’s biggest days it is not uncommon to see six-figure payouts from the superfecta wager.

Because the bet can pay out large winnings it tends to attract whales, or those handicappers who bet large amounts on horse races. Some bettors may invest hundreds or thousands of dollars into their superfecta tickets.

The bet is also attractive because many horse racing tracks have chosen to offer it for a minimum wager of just $0.10. This has drawn criticism from some professional handicappers who believe that bets should not be offered at such low stakes.

How the Bet Works

There are fewer wagers which are more challenging than the superfecta. It demands that a handicapper use all the skills at their disposal. To win the bet, a handicapper must select the first four finishers of a race in exact order. These horses cannot finish in any position but must come 1-2-3-4 as the bettor has indicated on the wagering ticket.

With as many as ten horses in a single thoroughbred race, the possible combinations become almost astronomical. The superfecta is a bet that takes on lottery-like proportions once the bettor begins adding horses to the ticket.

Although only one horse can be played in any position per combination, players can spread out their ticket to allow horses to cover multiple spots. This is known as boxing, and it can raise the cost of the superfecta ticket a great deal. For example, a $1 superfecta with the four horses in one spot costs $1. The same bet boxed will cost $24, but you will win if the four horses you have chosen take the top four spots in any position.

It may sound confusing to the novice bettor, but what you will discover is that online racebooks have ticket creators which make assembling your ticket easy. Just enter in the horses that you want to use, the base cost, and the ticket generator will do the rest.

The Cost of a Superfecta Wager

At most of the race tracks around the world you will find that the base cost of the superfecta is $2. This means that the payouts you see on the tote board are computed based on a $2 wager. You can also play the superfecta in other amounts, a practice that has caused its fair share of controversy among handicappers.

A $1 superfecta is the bet of choice among most casual players. This means one ticket for $1. Your one ticket will give you one superfecta selection of four horses in exact finishing order. If you were to box that ticket you would have 24 superfecta selections for a cost of $24. A $2 boxed ticket would cost you $48.

In recent years the $0.10 superfecta has become an addition to many menus at live race tracks and at online racebooks. This has been met with mixed emotions from experienced handicappers. Some have no problem with it while others believe it turns horse racing betting into something that resembles the lottery.

One thing can be said for sure. The $0.10 superfecta is cheap to play. A single ticket is just a dime, and $2.40 will get you 24 chances to win. Of course, you will only qualify for the $0.10 share of the betting pool is you are lucky enough to win the bet.

Betting the Superfecta Online

When you bet the superfecta online you will first decide how much you want to wager on the bet. We recommend that you start with the $1 bet. This makes the cost more reasonable but still allows for a decent size payout.

You will then decide which horses you want to bet for each of the four running positions. You will need to choose a horse to finish first, second, third, and fourth. Remember, your horses must finish in exact order unless you have chosen to box your superfecta ticket.

You will then submit the ticket and await the results of the race. Most tracks that are offered at an online racebook include superfecta betting in their menus. In some countries the bet may be referred to by another name.

Strategies for Superfecta Betting

There are many ways to go about betting the superfecta. You can play it straight. This means to only choose one horse for each finish position. You can choose a key horse and build a ticket around it. The type of betting strategy that you use is a personal preference. You will learn through trial and error which one works best for you.

In the beginning, you may want to stick with the boxing strategy. This means that you will only be choosing four horses but that you will be using them in every single position on the ticket. Instead of only one possible combination, you will have 24 of them.

The downside of using a boxing strategy is that it costs more to play the bet. The upside is that you will hit the wager more often than you would when playing it straight. Your personal strategy is going to have a lot to do with the size of your betting bankroll.

Making a Huge Score With Supers

Some people want to know how to maximize their profit when betting on the superfecta. The answer to this is to play the bet on the biggest days of horse racing. This means betting supers on the Kentucky Derby, Breeders’ Cup, and other events.

The betting pools on these big days in horse racing attract a lot of attention. More money in the betting pool means there is more money for bettors to win.

The trick is that the races on the big days can be more difficult to handicap. They are filled with competitive horses, most of whom have a chance to win.

Are you ready to try your hand at the superfecta? Sign up today with one of our recommended online horse betting sites and you’ll be able to play the bet at tracks all over the world. You will also get a nice bonus just for signing up and making a wagering deposit.

Check our Bovada racebook review, Twinspires review or even our Betamerica review. All great choice if you are in the US. 5Dimes review for folks anywhere!


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