Royal Ascot Betting Guide 2022: Tips, Odds & Reading the Form
If you are new to racing and betting but want to enjoy a flutter at the races, you’ve come to the right place!
With a total of 35 races at Royal Ascot, there are plenty of betting opportunities for punters and racing rookies.
Before placing a bet, study the horse racing form and read the racecard to learn as much as you can about the event. Better yet, visit the Parade Ring and get up close and personal with the horses, which can sometimes be a good indication of the runner that looks most likely to win.
Take a read of our ultimate Royal Ascot betting guide, including betting jargon and selection tips to help you enjoy a tipple at Ascot Racecourse.
Horse Racing Form & Racecard Guide
If you’re new to betting, deciphering the horse racing form and racecard is a challenge in itself. To help you out, we’ve provided a breakdown of horse racing abbreviations, numbers and symbols you’ll find on the card.
Horse Racing Racecard Breakdown
The race card is the most crucial tool in a punter’s arsenal. Starting with the far left of the card, here’s what each element means to help you get a better understanding:
- Colours: Refers to the colours the jockey will be wearing during the race.
- No: Indicate how favourable a horse is to win.
- Horse/Name: Refers to the horse’s name, which tends to be a creative combination of their Sire and Dam’s names.
- Number in Brackets: The number in brackets next to the horse’s name refers to how many days it’s been since its last race.
- Previous form: Numbers will usually follow a horse’s name and range from 1-9 to indicate their position in previous races, e.g. 531-422. The “–” separates racing seasons, while a “/” is used to show a break from racing, e.g. if the horse missed a racing season.
- Age: The horse age can help punters identify winners by predicting trends.
- St Lb: How much weight the horse is required to carry.
- J: The jockey’s name generates a lot of attention as top jockeys tend to deliver winners.
- T: The trainer’s name is helpful as some trainers have better records than others and will likely be well supported.
- O: Name of the owner.
- S: Name of the sponsor.
- B: The breeding, which is important for gamblers to consider as a horse with successful parents and siblings, can help you work out whether they’ll be any good.
- C: Stands for course and will indicate whether a horse has previously won at the racecourse.
- D: Stands for distance and refers to whether the horse has won over the distance of the race it has entered.
- CD: Informs punters of whether the horse has won at the course and over the distance of the race in consideration.
- BF: Indicates whether the horse was the favourite in their previous race.
- Timeform view: An expert’s opinion on the horse and how the race could unfold.
Horse Racing Form Abbreviations
- F: The horse fell
- R: The horse refused to race
- BD: Horse was brought down by another runner
- D: Horse was disqualified
- U or UR: Horse unseated the jockey
- P or PU: Jockey pulled up the horse and didn’t complete the race
- S: Horse slipped during the race
Tip: Make sure you don’t mix these abbreviations up with those used to refer to the horse’s performance in previous races.
Types of Royal Ascot Bets
Choose from a range of betting options at Ascot Racecourse to help you score a winner at Royal Ascot races.
Bet to Win
A fun and straightforward way to place a wager is to bet to win.
There’s a minimum spend of £2 at Ascot Racecourse and prices will be displayed on the screens at betting stations.
Bet to Place
You can also bet to place, which is available for races with five or more runners.
For races of 5, 6 or 7 runners, you can bet to place a horse 1st or 2nd, whereas races of 8 runners or more enable punters to place bets on what horse will finish 1st, 2nd and third.
You can also choose what horse will place 4th in handicap races of 16 or more runners. Again, there’s a minimum spend of £2 at Ascot Racecourse.
Bet Each Way
Betting each way is essentially a win bet and place bet in one, allowing gamblers to place a wager on all potential outcomes.
You can only bet each way on races with more than five runners, and a minimum £2 stake applies at Ascot Racecourse.
Bet Two From Three
Another popular betting type at Royal Ascot is the “Two From Three” wager, which allows you to pick two horses to place 1st, 2nd or 3rd in any order.
Unless announced otherwise, you can only bet two from three on races of six or more runners. If the number of runners is reduced to four or lower, the pool will be declared void, and all stakes will be returned to the gambler.
There is also a minimum spend of £2 for this type of bet at Royal Ascot.
One of the most popular betting types in horse racing is the Placepot bet.
It allows punters to win massive payouts from small stakes without backing a winner. For example, the average dividend from a £1 stake is £407! One punter at Cheltenham even won a jaw-dropping £91,774.50 from a £1 stake during the 2015 Festival.
When making a placepot wager, all gamblers need to do is pick a placed horse in the first six races on the card. After that, the stake they enter in the pool will be divided between the winners.
Tip: Boost your chances of winning a large payout by selecting more than one horse to place in each race.
Survivor is a relatively new bet where gamblers pick the winning horse in the first six races until one ticket is left in the pool.
It’s essentially knockout betting, but if more than one ticket survives all six races, bookies will split earnings equally. Again, Ascot Racecourse requires a minimum spend of £2.
The other popular betting types at Royal Ascot are:
- First Two
- First Two Reverse
- First Three
- First Three Combination
- Scoop 6
Apart from Quadpot, which has a minimum spend of £1, bettors will need to spend a minimum of £2 on the other types of bets.
Where to Place a Bet During Royal Ascot
At Ascot, you can place a wager at the Bet With Ascot outlet, in the Betting Ring or with a Betfred Betting shop.
Bet With Ascot
Bet With Ascot outlets are located throughout the site. They work slightly differently to betting with bookmakers as stakes go into a separate pool, with winnings dependent on how many other winning tickets are in that pool, a little bit like the lottery.
The Bet With Ascot operation runs in partnership with the UK Tote Group and as you are not betting against a bookmaker, expect the price of your horse to fluctuate greatly – adding a little extra excitement to race day.
The Betting Ring can be located in front of the Grandstand and comprises individual bookmakers that display odds on screens at their stands. They will also specify the types of bets they are taking, e.g., win-only bets or each-way wagers.
Betfred Betting Shops
Betfred became the official bookmaker of Royal Ascot in 2019 and will operate two betting shops within the concourse of the Grandstand throughout the five-day event.
Gambling Standards and Rules at Ascot Racecourse
Ascot Racecourse advocates safe gambling practices and, as a result, reminds racegoers to follow the following rules to maintain fun at the races:
- It is illegal for customers under 18 to bet, and Ascot operates a think-25 policy to ensure safe gambling standards.
- Ascot has the right to refuse service if betting teams suspect criminal activity.
- Errors will not be rectified after the race has commenced.
- Customers must verify payments before leaving the betting station to rectify any errors.
- There is no maximum limit on the amount of money that can be stakes or won on a Bet With Ascot wager.
- Declarations could be delayed until the official adjudication result, and bookmakers may collect payments up to 13 months after purchase.
- Bet with Ascot reserves the right to pay the whole, or part, of any winnings via BACS.
Please visit Ascot’s On-Course Betting Rules page for full details of Royal Ascot betting rules and guidelines.
Horse Racing Betting Jargon
Anyone unfamiliar with placing wagers will soon realise that having a good grasp of betting jargon will come in handy when staking a bet at Ascot Racecourse. We’ve covered a few of the most popular:
In gambling, ante-post relates to wagers made at least a day before the event.
A banker is a safe bet, meaning that it’s likely to produce the highest strike rate.
A male horse under the age of five. Once the horse hits five years old, they are referred to as a stallion.
If an event is tied, this is referred to as “dead heat”.
The amount a winning bet gets in return for every £1 stake placed.
A horse that finds its price increasing ahead of the race.
This horse will have the shortest odds to win – the most fancied winner.
All the runners that have entered the race, often excluding the favourite.
A female horse under the age of five. Once they reach five years old, they are referred to as a mare.
In horse racing, the going refers to the ground conditions horses will be running on, e.g. good, heavy, hard or soft.
A term used to describe the race getting underway.
On the Nose
A term used to refer that you’re betting to win only.
A term used to describe a £25 bet.
In gambling, the term void is used when a bet has been declared invalid.