Each Way Bet Explained

Each Way Bet Explained

Here I’m going to show you how to make money when bookies are offering each way (EW) bets with “Extra Places” paid via Matched Betting. (MB)

This article assumes you already understand matched betting and you have worked your way through most, if not all, of the New Account offers and you are looking for ways to make a permanent ongoing income from matched betting. (If you are new to Matched Betting see here)


So How do you Win with Extra Places?

OK so under normal circumstance the bookies pay-out for EW bets as shown in the table below.

However, when they want to attract some extra business, they send out special offers to their existing customers to stimulate more visitors to their websites. Often this is in the form of “Extra Places” for EW bets.

With a normal “Each Way” bet you might back a horse £5 EW (total cost £10), it costs double because you are actually placing 2 bets. Half of which is betting the horse will win and half saying the horse will finish in the first 4 places (assuming 16+ runners).

With extra places we can gain if offer to pay for the top 5 rather than 4. They always do this for big races like the Gold Cup, Derby, Grand National etc. but they also do it throughout the normal racing calendar on any big featured race or maybe one they’re sponsoring.

These EW opportunities are not available every day, but they certainly happen once a week or maybe a once a fortnight at worst. If you are serious about Matched Betting though you should grab these as they can be a big money winner for you.


Here’s How you Win

Let’s say right up front that you might place this type of bet several times before you hit the jackpot, but it is worth the effort here’s why.

So, if you “Back” a horse EW, (i.e. to Win and Place) with Corals and lay it EW to lose with Betfair at very close matching or even arbing prices you can do this strategy several times without it costing you much at all.

Remember though Corals are offering 5 places for the EW not just the standard 4. This means if you do it often enough then occasionally your horse will finish 5th.

This means you will get paid via Corals because the place part of the bet is a winner according to them but also on Betfair your Lay bet also wins because it did not finish in the top 4 spots. Bingo you win on both bets!


Try Before you Buy!

If your relatively new to MB or you’ve just never done EW bets, then it might be an idea to have a practise with small stakes just to get the feel of it so that when the bigger offers come along you can confidently dive in and try to maximise your profits.

Unlike a normal MB where you just “back and lay” the horse to win, with an EW bet you must back the EW with the bookie and lay BOTH the win and the “place” on the Betfair exchange so you need to be more confident to do the bets a bit quicker before the prices have the chance to move.


Options for Making a Profit

Obviously as with all MB finding horses you can back and lay at very close odds is crucial to this strategy so that’s where the OddsMonkey’s Oddsmatcher comes in. It searches in real time every horse race with every bookie to find the closest price matches for you. 

I stress again that using this method, you’re not guaranteed to hit the extra place or benefit from the Betfair commission breaks. However, if you are relatively new to MB let me assure you that long-term this strategy allows you the chance to gain some good profits even using a relatively small bankroll.


Increasing your Chances

I know some matched betters who try and back and lay the entire field if there are 3 or 4 bookies offering extra places on the same race.  On the positive side you are bound to get a 5th place finisher in the example above but your qualifying losses are going to add up.

Also, on the negative side this can take a while. For me I will only Back/Lay a horse if the qualifying loss is acceptable to me versus my potential long-term gain if I get the 5th place horse.

In other words, if I’m likely to win £50 in a twenty-horse race if I get the 5th place finisher then if they have an equal chance of finishing 5th then I should get 5th once every 20 races. So, if I lose 50p on my 19 “losers” but win £50 on the 20th race then I’m still going to be £50 – (19x50p) £9.50 = £41.50 in profit.

If your qualifying losses are over £1 on a consistent basis then you are not in such a good EV spot. (expected value)

With extra place betting you can also get a small edge via the Betfair commission breaks. This is because you only pay commission on your net winnings in Betfair. So, if you’ve layed every horse for £30 in a race of 18 horses only one can win the race so the other 17 must lose.

It means my lays cost me £510 (17 x £30 lay bets) but if the horse that has wins the race has a big liability to me, i.e. over £510, I don’t pay any commission at all because I’m a net loser with Betfair. In this example though I’d have won chunks with the bookmaker but you don’t pay commission via your bookie winnings.

My advice is not to back more than two horses like this with one bookie and if you can’t find good price matches with the other bookies on different horses just back and lay the same horse again with the other bookies. 

Remember long term the odds will play out so you don’t need to get “lucky” because over many races you will have your fair share of hitting the sweet spot.  Just keep your qualifying losses small and it won’t matter in the long run.

It’s exceptionally rare to be able to back/lay every horse and guarantee a profit so just stick to the good prices and wait for the law of averages to work in your favour.


Where to find the Best EW Extra Place bets?

Every day I log in to my Oddsmonkey account and have a quick look at the “Daily Extra Place” thread on the forum where the members keep it updated with all the best extra place offers for that days racing.


Other Profit Options and How Much?

When lots of bookies are offering extra places on the same race then Betfair will often have a special market for it laying 5 places. This market isn’t so strong as the normal win market or place market and it’s often easy to find an “arb” to make money from. Though this will offer less profits than hitting the “win win” by laying for 4 places only.

I can’t really tell you an exact figure I’ve made from the “Extra Place” method of MB as I only keep daily and monthly profit figures, but over the last 4 years it would certainly add up to a tidy sum.

I’ve had days where I’ve had 3 horses finish in the sweet spot of the extra place but be aware that you might also go on a long run of not getting them.

Also remember if a horse withdraws close to race time it may well change the terms. So maybe an 8-horse race becomes a 7-horse race. So, 3 places paid becomes only 1st and 2nd.

It’s worth noting that bookies offer extra places paid on other sports as well. Big golf tournaments like the Open or US Masters are some of my favourite bets.


Summary on EW Extra Place Betting

We all know when you open a new account with an online bookie you get great offers and great value free bets but after that initial free money it gets a little tougher to find the value. In this article I’ve shown you just one method of the very best ways you can make money with Matched Betting as an ongoing strategy. There are others of course which I’ll cover in later posts.