Exchange Betting Guide


Firstly the basics:

A betting exchange is a platform that allows bettors to place wagers on various events, ranging from sports betting to politics betting. Here we will concentrate on horse racing.

The difference between betting on a horse with a bookmaker and on the betting exchange is:

  • Betting at a bookmaker means that you are betting against the bookmaker.
  • Betting at an exchange means you are betting against another bettor. 

So, for example, if you place a bet with a bookmaker, then there are two parties involved in that bet: you the bettor and the bookmaker. However, with an exchange bet, there are three parties: you, the bettor; the exchange; and a third party – another bettor who agrees to take your bet because they believe the opposite outcome to your bet will take place. The exchange acts as the link between the two bettors and takes a small percentage of the winnings only, currently as low as 2%.

Beginners guide:

There is plenty of information to get started on the Betfair site , including a range of instructional videos. There is also has a function that allows you to practise betting and laying using fictional stakes.

For more details, go to:

As a member:

Step by step guide to placing a horse racing bet as a member of the service.

To back a horse

Click on the selected race.

On the left-hand column (coloured blue) the top figure is the odds-in decimal-that are available to back the horse.

The figure underneath in £’s is the amount available to back at that price.

Be aware that the liquidity on a race-i.e. the amount of money on the exchange-can be very low in the morning.

The nearer to race time you get, the more the liquidity increases.

It is therefore useful to be able to leave an order of a bet you wish to make.

You do this by selecting the price you want to back to horse at.

This is easily done:

Click on the price that is currently available.

A window will appear on the right-hand side of the screen with the name of the horse, the odds box and a stake box.

You then click on the odds arrow to increase the odds to the minimum price you want.

You then enter the amount you want to bet in the stake box.

You then click on the yellow place bet tab.

The system will then keep the bet live until hopefully it is matched.

To back two horses against the field in a race, the procedure is the same.

You just have to repeat the process for the other horse.

To lay a horse

The procedure is the same, except that we go to the right-hand column (coloured pink).

If the maximum price to lay the horse isn’t available, you can again leave an order.

This time after you have clicked on the current lay price, you can click on the lay arrow to decrease the odds to the price you want.

Then enter your stake and click the yellow place bet tab.

We do advise that you set up a range of accounts, most notably with Betfair and Betdaq.

In the early stages it is worth monitoring the markets to understand how they develop and how you can take advantage of the value available by following Steve’s analysis and price guidance.

Professional backer – Horse Racing Advisory Service