What is a Trixie in Horse Betting?

A Trixie bet is a common sports betting strategy used by punters in Ireland and the UK when looking for big payouts from relatively small stakes. Most common with people placing bets on horse racing, it can also be used as a multiple-method bet type for a variety of sports, including football.


A little confusingly given its name, a Trixie bet actually consists of four separate bets but is concerned with three specific betting events. More confused? This is our guide to Trixie betting to make everything clearer about the gambling strategy.

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Written by

Eamon Doggett
Eamon DoggettVerified
Fact checked by Siobhan Aslett

Horse racing betting has become part and parcel of the excitement at the track. A particular sports betting strategy punters should be aware of is the 'Trixie Betting' system, whereby a combination of bets can be placed. We'll be looking at the basics of a Trixie bet and possible ways to optimise your Trixie betting strategy.

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How Does a Trixie Bet Work?

When putting a Trixie bet on, a punter tries to predict the outcome of three separate events. Let's call these events A, B and C. 

But unlike an accumulator, with a Trixie, punters don't need to correctly predict the outcome of all three events to get a payout. Rather, they can also win money by correctly predicting two of the three events. 

This is because a Trixie bet consists of three doubles and one treble bet (four bets in total). So a Trixie bet on events A, B, C would consist of: 

1 x Double on outcomes A and B coming true.
1 x Double on outcomes A and C coming true.
1 x Double on outcomes B and C coming true.
1 x Treble on all three outcomes A, B and C coming true.

How Much Does it Cost to Place? 

You are essentially placing four separate bets that, when combined together, is called a Trixie. Therefore, a punter's unit stake is multiplied by four for each Trixie bet they place. 

For example, a €5 Trixie on three horse races (A, B and C) will amount to a €20 (€5 x 4) total cost.

How Do I Win?

To win money from a Trixie bet, you need to correctly predict the outcome of at least two of the three events.

Result: You lose your entire stake.

Result: One of the doubles wins and you get a return. This return could potentially be bigger or smaller than your stake, depending on the odds of the horses you chose.

Result: Each of the three doubles wins, and you also win the treble. You are guaranteed a profit on your bet and a big payout could be coming your way!

How Do I Calculate My Winnings? 

To calculate your winnings, punters can seek out a bet calculator, but a little maths is only needed to fully understand the payout from a Trixie bet. 

Firstly, if using fractional odds, convert these into decimal odds by dividing the numerator (the top number) by the denominator (the bottom number) and then adding one. For example, 3/1 becomes 4.0, while 9/4 becomes 3.25. 

For a winning double: multiply the odds of the first selection by the odds of the second selection. 

For example, a 2/1 and 3/1 winner would be 3.0 x 4.0 = 12.0. If you place a €5 Trixie bet (total cost of €20) the return would be €5 x 12.0 = €60. This would represent a profit of €40. 

For a winning treble: multiply the odds of the first selection by the odds of the second selection and then by the odds of the third selection. 

For example, a 2/1 and 3/1 and 4/1 winner would be 3.0 x 4.0 x 5.0 = 60.0. If you place a €5 Trixie bet (total cost of €20) the return would be €5 x 60.0 = €300. This would represent a profit of €280. 

But...don't forget that a winning treble will also naturally include three winning doubles! So the breakdown of your winnings would be. 

1 x Double on outcomes A (2/1) and B (3/1): €5 x 12.0 = €60
1 x Double on outcomes A (2/1) and C (4/1): €5 x 15.0 = €75
1 x Double on outcomes B (3/1) and C (4/1): €5 x 20.0 = €100
1 x Treble on all three outcomes A (2/1), B (3/1) and C (4/1): €5 x 60.0 = €300.
Total return: €535 (€60 + €75 + €100 + €300)

What Are the Benefits of Trixie Betting?

The insurance

It is hard not to feel hard done by when, for example, you get no money back on an accumulator on three horses and two of them win. However, Trixie betting provides some insurance in the sense that you only need to correctly predict two of three events to get money back (and often make a profit). 

This can be a particularly wise strategy if the horses you are betting on have big odds. 

Let's consider two such scenarios. 

Scenario 1

Bob places a €5 accumulator on three horses. Horse A is 6/1, Horse B is 7/1 and Horse C is Evens. 

Outcome: Horse A wins at 6/1, Horse B wins at 7/1, but Horse C loses at Evens. 

Result: Bob loses his €5 stake. It doesn't matter that they picked 6/1 and 7/1 winners. 

Scenario 2

Amy places a €5 Trixie (total cost €20) on three horses. Horse A is 6/1, Horse B is 7/1 and Horse C is Evens. 

Outcome: Horse A wins at 6/1, Horse B wins at 7/1, but Horse C loses at Evens. 

Result: Amy has a winning double on Horses A and B. The payout will work out at €5 x 56.0 (7.0 x 8.0) = €280 (profit of €260)

Summary

As is evident, Amy emerges the happier punter as she has made a €280 profit with her 6/1 and 7/1 winners, while Bob has lost €5 despite also picking 6/1 and 7/1 winners. 

Backing Favourites

Like all multiple bets, Trixies can make backing favourites a more exciting and lucrative enterprise. 

While punters can only double their money, for instance, by betting on even-money shots, with a Trixie bet they can focus their stake on more lucrative multiples. 

Scenario 1

Bob places three €5 single bets on three horses (A, B and C), all of which are Evens, for a total cost of €15. 

Outcome: Horses A, B and C win their respective races. 

Result: Bob gets a return of €10 off each bet for a total return of €30. His profit for the three bets is €15. 

Scenario 2

Amy puts a €1 Trixie bet (total cost €4) on three horses (A, B and C), all of which are Evens. 

Outcome: Horses A, B and C win their respective races. 

Result: Amy gets a return of €20, which represents a profit of €16, despite risking losing only off a €4 wager compared to the €15 Bob risked. 

1 x Double on horse A (Evens) and horse B (Evens): €1 x 4.0 = €4
1 x Double on horse A (Evens) and horse C (Evens): €1 x 4.0 = €4
1 x Double on horse B (Evens) and horse C (Evens): €1 x 4.0 = €4
1 x Treble on all three horses A (Evens), B (Evens) and C (Evens): €1 x 8.0 = €8
Total returns: €20 (€4 + €4 + €4 + €8)

What is the Risk of Trixie Betting?

Like all multiple betting types, Trixies can prompt punters to seek big payouts and gamble irresponsibly. If the first selection loses, punters can be tempted to place another Trixie to keep alive the dream of a big cash prize, which can lead to significant liabilities. In this sense, only betting within one's means is a must. 

Another perceived drawback of Trixies is that each of your bets has to have the same stake, so you can’t place a higher stake on one particular combination. An alternative strategy is to place all the bets in a Trixie (i.e. three doubles and one treble) on separate betslips. This will then give you the opportunity to stake more money on bets you perceive as your best chances and less on your less-confident selections.

How Does a Trixie Bet Differ From Other Types of Bets?

The closest relative of a Trixie bet is the Patent bet. The key difference is that the Patent includes single bets on all three selections, meaning it includes a total of seven bets: three singles, three doubles and a treble.

This means that you need to multiply your unit stake by seven. For example, a €5 Patent will cost a bettor €35. 

Tips for Trixie Betting

  • It can often pay to use Trixies when your selections are big odds.
  • In this scenario, a winning double bet can pay handsome dividends. Plus, you also hold onto the chance of bagging the treble and all the gold!
  • It is also worth reading information from bookmakers on special offers they might have for Trixie bets on their site. Oftentimes they pay added bonuses for winning bets.

FAQs

Here are some of the most frequently asked questions we receive about Trixie betting.

How many selections are required for Trixie betting?

A gambler needs to make three selections for a Trixie bet.

What is the minimum stake required for Trixie betting?

Bookmakers will not usually impose any minimum stake for Trixie betting on customers.

What is the maximum stake allowed for Trixie betting?

This will be dependent on the policies of the bookie. Some bookmakers will allow larger stakes on multiple bets than others.

What is the minimum odds requirement for Trixie betting?

There is no minimum odds requirement for Trixie betting.

What are the maximum odds allowed for Trixie betting?

Similarly, there is no maximum odds limit for Trixie betting.

Eamon doggett

Eamon DoggettVerified

Featured Horse Racing & Rugby Specialist

Eamon combines his passion for writing, racing, & rugby, by proving horse racing betting & rugby betting insights for punters.

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