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Kentucky Derby 2012 Betting Guide: How To Bet On The Horses

Ever wanted to bet on the horses in the Kentucky Derby but don't know how? Have no fear, as Matt Gardner of SB Nation has compiled a betting guide to get you started.

It is completely legal to bet on horse racing over the internet, although you will want to be careful of who you leave your money with. Some trusted sites include TwinSpires.com, TVG.com and ExpressBet.com.

Now that you have a place to bet, it's time to make one. There are three basic bets you can make on the race listed below.

WIN: A bet on a horse to win (if you don't know this you probably shouldn't be betting)
PLACE: A bet on a horse to finish either 1st or 2nd.
SHOW: A bet on a horse to finish 1st, 2nd or 3rd.

There are also more complex bets that stretch across multiple races that are explained in Gardner's article linked above.

Now it's time to pick a horse. Ever wonder what those numbers mean next to a horse's name? Those are the odds of the horse's chance of winning and the payout if they do. Here is an explanation.

Odds

Win %

Odds

Win %

1/10

90.91%

4/1

20.00%

1/5

83.33%

9/2

18.19%

2/5

71.42%

5/1

16.67%

1/2

66.67%

6/1

14.29%

3/5

62.50%

7/1

12.50%

4/5

55.56%

8/1

11.11%

Even

50.00%

9/1

10.00%

6/5

45.45%

10/1

9.09%

7/5

41.67%

11/1

8.33%

3/2

40.00%

12/1

7.69%

8/5

38.46%

15/1

6.25%

9/5

35.71%

20/1

4.76%

2/1

33.33%

25/1

3.85%

5/2

28.57%

30/1

3.23%

3/1

25.00%

50/1

1.96%

7/2

22.22%

99/1

1.00%


To figure you how much you'll get paid if you hit your win bet, simply divide the numerator of the odds by the denominator, multiply that number by the amount bet, and then add the amount bet.

For example, if you took Florida-based horse Trinniberg to win at his current odds of 50-1 with a $2 bet...

50 x 2 + 2 = $102

Place and Show payouts are more difficult to calculate since tracks don't display the odds on those bets. Usually, they pay less than half what the winning odds play (unless the horse is a huge longshot and the favorite doesn't finish in the top three).

Now that you've read this guide, you are now on your way to becoming a savvy horse racing gambler!

For more updates on the 2012 Kentucky Derby, stay tuned to this StoryStream and SB Nation Tampa Bay. For all the latest news from around horse racing, head on over to SB Nation's very own horse racing blog, And Down The Stretch They Come

Photographs by cstreet.us, thelastminute, turtlemom nancy , fesek, kthypryn, justinwright, sue_elias, pointnshoot, and scrapstothefuture used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.