There are some bets that it is reasonably easy to work out what you’re likely to win by looking at the odds. If your wager is 1/1, for example, then you know that you’ll get back what you place in your stake. Similarly, if you place a bet that is 2/1 then you’ll double your stake money if your selection is successful.
There are others, however, that are much trickier to work out and the 4/5 bet is the perfect example. It is a short-odds wager, but what does that mean in terms of what you can expect to receive from the bookie?
The best way of figuring out how much you should expect a bookmaker to pay you for a winning bet with odds of 4/5 is by having a look at some specific examples. As with any bet, the payout will be dictated by both the odds that you’ve received when placing the bet and the amount that you’ve placed on it with your stake. Here is a look at what your return would be depending on your stake, as well as how much profit you would make:
Whilst it is reasonably easy to workout what the payout would be for a bet on something with odds of 4/5 if you’re going for a Straight Win bet, things become more complicated if you want to place your wager in a slightly different way. It isn’t uncommon for people to choose to be a bit more cautious and opt for an Each-Way wager, giving themselves a chance of at least some return on their bet. Each-Way bets are, as you probably know, two bets equalling one on the Win and one on the Place.
Most bookmakers will payout on the Place part of your bet at reduced odds, usually 1/4 of the odds. That means that if your odds were 20/1 then you’d be paid out at 5/1, which is 20 x 1/4. When it comes to 4/5, though, that is definitely slightly trickier to work out what you should expect in the way of a return. The good news is that bookmakers do it for you, but you’ll no doubt be wondering what sort of return you should expect so here is a look at the odds on the various different stake amounts from above:
|Each-Way Stake Amount||Total Bet||Win Payout||Place Payout|
When it comes to events that have proved to be winners with odds of 4/5, they are reasonably easy to find. Looking at a horse racing meeting such as the Cheltenham Festival, for example, and there’s a good chance that some horses will have gone off with those odds. It is a suggestion that the bookmakers fancy them, but aren’t locked in to the idea that they’re definitely going to win so don’t want to be too stingy in their odds for fear of not enticing any bettors.
An example of that starting price could be found at Lingfield on the seventh of March 2023, for example. There was a field of eight that ran in the 17.10, with Navy Drums going off as the 4/5 favourite. Here’s a look at how things finished:
The fact that the horse with the shortest odds won isn’t all that surprising, but when you look at how the rest of the field ended up you can see why it is that nothing is guaranteed in betting. Oxygen Thief’s odds of 28/1 are suggestive of a horse that has very little to offer, but he ended up coming in ahead of three horses whose odds were very much shorter than his were. When you bear that in mind, it is easy to understand why odds alone are not necessarily an indicator of an outcome that is either guaranteed to happen nor certain not to.