Venus Trapped in Mars Sports and Lifestyle Blog Dallas

02 May 2014

The Girl's Guide: How To Bet On Horse Racing

This is not a sponsored post, but if the Kentucky Derby wants to send me money, then by all means, please do.  

I'm just working a half day before heading off to Lexington, Kentucky for the Derby! Yes, I'm aware the Derby is in Louisville, but my hotel will be in Lex with transportation to Churchill Downs! As it turns out, there is even a bonus perk with this trip, because a small little blogger you may have heard of (hah, of course you've heard of her) Erin, will be one of the Cottonelle Correspondents as well! 

Although I'm really not sure what the rules of being a Correspondent are for this day at the derby, there are two things if I don't get to do I will die. One, someone places a mint julep in my hand. Two, make all of the horsey wagers. Today's post is about the latter. 

While the rules and strategy of horse racing is not a difficult concept to grasp.... The jockeys need to be itty bitty (fat jockey = slower horse). The horses should be big and strong. The horse who goes the fastest and finishes first is the winner.

But betting on the horses is far more complicated. so I'm going to break this down in levels. 

Level One- Use one of these bets if you are new to the Kentucky Derby and the first thing you did is walk into the gift shop to buy a souvenir mint julep cup.

Win // Place // Show - Only involves wagering on ONE horse

Betting on a horse to show will give you the highest odds of winning (but also the lowest payoff)
So if you just want to brag that you won, bet on the horse to simply "show".

Level Two- Use this if you have a little liquid courage running through your veins and you're feeling like a big shot! Again, this only involves wagering on one horse.


Level Three- You are braver than I am. There is just way too much commitment for me here.

Remember that Cottonelle giveaway I told you about on Monday? Well that would be an Exacta bet. They are betting that the number 1 horse finishes first and the number 2 horse finishes second. Now this is the south, so naturally there is etiquette for everything, even the proper way to recite your bet to the kind person at the window. But beware, just because it's the south, doesn't mean they will be kind if you don't follow etiquette properly. They will get angry, trust me I know from Keeneleand experience.....

Then finally, how do you pick which horse to bet on? Well what are you willing to win? Or if you are named Sarah Webb, what are you willing to lose?

I know that was a lot of info, but just pick and choose the stuff you need, when you are ready to bet! Or just bet on the mimosas and mint juleps and you'll be a big winner every single time.... High payout, high reward! 

Be sure to follow me on Instagram to see which hat I picked for this weekend
and who won the Jerry Jones ad space!

 Oh, and feel free to share your winnings with the girl that taught you all this stuff.... #JustASuggestionForTheSuggestionBox

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  1. You have such a fun weekend in store!! Have a blast!! I would love to meet up with you for a beverage.. or five.. if you have time!! :)

  2. I feel like such a bad Southerner because here I am in Nashville with no intentions to go to the Derby. But I did watch Secretariat last weekend so that should almost count, right? Hope you have a blast!


  3. Oh boy, I got so confused here. I think I'll just put my money on the most skinny guy... how does that sound?

  4. It's safe to say I had no idea about this. You really are the best at explaining sports. Not just saying that. This post is also particularly pretty. I'm impressed.

  5. i love how you describe makes it so easy to understand and I don't feel so stupid after it! seriously, I say it every time you put one of these up that I don't understand, but they're always so damn good! love your blog!!!

  6. Not the Derby, but my sister and I did some betting at a casino in little ol' Delaware. We tried multiple strategies, some based on previous win history, types of races run, and so on. This did nothing for us, so my sister and I quickly resorted to picking pretty horses and/or pretty names (less effort, y'know?). Still nada. Finally, we decided to get counter intuitive and pick the name we disliked the most. Lo and behold, Madgie McTerribleHorseName (sorry, can't remember exactly, but it was bad) won! We made $60 and considered the day a great success.

    That being said, I'm still sure there's a strategy to betting - I just haven't figured it out yet. :P Best of luck with your bets!!!

    Jenn | Business, Life & Design

  7. Happy Oaks Day!!!! enjoy the derby

  8. This is fantastic! I used to live RIGHT by the Del Mar Racetrack in San Diego and totally never had a clue as to what I was betting on! I just did a few dollars here and there. My favorite part was the club or VIP seating! This is so fun! LOVE! I would love to go to the Kentucky Derby some day!

  9. Haha even with the breakdown I'm confused!! I am so jealous you're going to the derby, though!! Have fun & can't wait to see your blog post about it soon!

    xo, K

  10. Can someone please tell me how to be a correspondent for these things??? Lol... I have a bucket list here and the Derby is on it! By the way you MUST have a piece of Kentucky Butter Cake with Bourbon sauce while you are there... to die for. And also if you get hungry try a Hot Brown, just do it. Dasha's has the best cornbread, Sawyers is good for bar food and Joe Bologna's is in an old church and is great Italian. All downtown Lex if you spend any time there. I've been a time or two:)

  11. I'm not likely to be betting on the horses anytime soon, but this was actually a really useful post! Thank you!

  12. Thank you for this, I am not a gambling girl, but I have always wondered how it all worked. I knew the horse odds part, but not all the other lingo and terms.

  13. Find the guy placing superfecta bets and have him buy you a drink instead.

  14. You are so smart. I love this because I have always wondered this!

  15. You are so smart, Sarah. The only thing that I remember from my father in law (he trains horses for a living) is the Trifecta. He's counting on his grandkids being jockeys because, ahem, I'm so short. Haha. Great post!

  16. AH! I love your day at the races outfits! So adorable. I am dying to go to the races here in the UK just to wear the outfit!

  17. I always learn something new - you speak my language! :)


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