A Brief Overview

Ladbrokes horse racing

Ladbrokes is a renowned sportsbook and was established over a century ago. Together with its brick-and-mortar shops, it offers online sports betting as well as an online casino to its patrons throughout the UK, Ireland and Belgium. It covers a range of betting markets from basketball, football and golf, to formula one, esports, politics and even television events like Eurovision.

Ladbrokes - a Horse Racing Expert

While there are hundreds of wagering options to choose from, Ladbrokes is particularly well-known for its horse racing markets, dating as far back as 1886.

Don’t let this century-old bookmaker fool you though, and it has definitely kept up with the times. In addition to virtual horse racing, Ladbrokes also provides live betting and streaming with impressive international coverage. Not only can you bet on horse racing in Europe, but various tracks across the globe too. These include famous meets in France, South Africa and Australia.

Ladbrokes also offers a massive variety of US horse racing options. It places these wagers directly into the US Tote Pool, which is subject to entirely different rules. We’ll cover these in more detail below. First, we’ll take a closer look at each-way bets in horse racing.

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Each Way Bets Explained

While many horse racing punters favour this popular form of betting, you can also find it for tournament sports like football, golf, cycling and greyhound racing. An each-way bet, represented as E/W or EW, consists of two parts: “Win” and “Place”. In horse racing, it’s essentially two wagers on the same horse.

How Does it Work?

With the first part of an each-way bet, as its name suggests, you’ll choose a horse that you think will win. You’ll then use the second part to decide which place your horse will finish in- either first, or a predetermined place. The number of places to choose from usually depends on the type of race and the number of runners. Both parts of this bet have the same value. This means a £2 (or €/$2) each way has a £1 (or €/$1) stake on the win, with an equivalent stake on the place.


If your horse wins the race, then Ladbrokes pays you out for each part of your wager. Conversely, if your horse doesn’t win, but finishes in the place that you predicted, then you’ll get paid for the place bet. However, the win bet portion of your stake is lost.

With this kind of horse racing wager, the place odds are at a predetermined fraction of the win bet odds. Ladbrokes has the following terms listed on its site when it comes to each-way bets:

Non-Handicap Races

  • 2 to 4 runners – win only, which means that your place bet is on the same win bet selection.
  • 5 to 7 runners – place bet odds at ¼ of the win odds, with first and second place choices.
  • 8 or more runners – place bet odds at ⅕ of the win odds, with first to third place choices.

Handicap Races

The same three conditions apply as above, with the addition of:

  • 12 to 15 runners – place bet odds at ¼ of the win odds, with first to third place choices.
  • 16 or more runners – the same as above, with fourth place added.

Keep in mind that some events have different terms and conditions, which Ladbrokes advertises when you place your bet. You’ll see these, together with the odds and number of placement choices, when you make your selections.

US Horse Racing & Each Way Bets at Ladbrokes

US horse racing and each way bets at Ladbrokes

As stated above, Ladbrokes also offers US horse racing, with all wagers being placed into the US Tote Pool. Unlike fixed-odds, this pari-mutuel system calculates the odds of each runner according to the amount of wagers and horses in each race.

It also sets bets in US dollars, so your stake is converted accordingly, and the amount deducted from your account balance. Furthermore, the system declares dividends to a two-unit stake. This means that a return of, say, 5.00 is actually 2.50 for every Pound (or Euro, depending on your default currency).

Each-way bets are different again. While there are still “Win” and “Place” options, American Tote has a “Show” option as well. This changes the dynamics, with the bet types being as follows:

  • Win – select the winner
  • Place – choose a horse for one of the top two positions
  • Show – select a horse for one of the top three positions

Therefore, the equivalent of an each-way is the combination of a win and show, which you can place directly via the desktop site or Ladbrokes mobile app. However, it’s best to have a grasp on the various principles for these kinds of wagers. You can find a full list of the rules, terms and conditions of US horse racing and tote betting on the Ladbrokes website.

Odds Comparison – Higher Risk vs Lower Risk

While these wagers can be a useful tool, especially as an insurance of sorts, they’re usually applied to outsiders as they’re less likely to win (with higher-risk odds).

Therefore, an underdog that doesn’t win, but still places, could get you a better return than a favourite in the same position. This is because the lower-risk odds result in a lower payout.

It follows then that the place bet to return on a favourite is even less, as it’s a fraction of the already-lower odds. It could also result in a total loss, depending on your stakes.

On the other hand, a strong contender for first place could also bring you a higher payout, if your win bet succeeds. You could even put your place bet down to win in this instance. That’s why it’s crucial to compare the odds of each runner and make your selections carefully.

Advantages & Disadvantages

Horse racing punters use various bets according to their strategy. Even so, there are always perceived pros and cons of every kind of wager. Ultimately though, it depends on personal preference. The each-way bet is no different. Here are a few main points that you can weigh up for yourself:

  • Advantages
  • Place bets “back” a win bet, albeit at a fraction
  • Lower-risk approach with a two-fold bet on the same horse
  • Place odds stem from win odds
  • They are commonly used for outsider runners
  • Ladbrokes’ horse racing promos could enhance the odds
  • Disadvantages
  • Stakes are effectively doubled
  • Lower risk means lower reward
  • Place bets payout at a fraction

Our Advice

We’ve covered the fundamentals of each way bets at Ladbrokes, but before you go, here are few extra tips to take with you:

  1. Study the Terms
    In horse racing, each way bets payout at the nominal odds, as well as a fraction amount. You could end up losing if you don’t consider what a place bet pays out on a specific horse.

    Do your homework, and make sure that you understand the terms of the bet beforehand. Look at the odds, the number of places and the odds fraction. All of these things will help you determine whether an each-way on a specific runner is worth your while.
  2. Consider Outsiders Instead of Favourites
    As we’ve mentioned previously, this kind of wager is suitable for outsiders. While the best-case scenario is always for your horse to win, it’s much more realistic to use an each-way bet on an unlikely winner. That way, your return could be higher because of the odds, even if your horse only places.
  3. Look For Value
    Find the perfect opportunity to use an each-way bet. Even bookmakers like Ladbrokes make the occasional underestimation. This is especially true for races like major handicaps, where ratings and weights of the horses are close to one another. If you can find value in a runner-up that outperforms its odds, then each way betting could be a profitable strategy.
  4. Take Advantage of Promotions
    Ladbrokes specialises in horse racing and, as such, you’ll often find promotions geared towards this market. Keep an eye out for Best Odds Guaranteed, Odds Boosters and the like. You can see what’s currently available on the Ladbrokes website.


The art of horse race betting spans centuries and, as such, it has evolved. Therefore, so should your strategy. Each-way betting is a fantastic place to start. Now that you’ve learnt the basics, you can hone your skills and improve your overall betting game.

Remember, it’s the type of wager that demands research and careful consideration. An each-way on odds that are too low could be disastrous. On the contrary, if you plan well and wager on a horse with respectable odds, then you could reap the benefits.

Ladbrokes not only provides clear terms, but it also has in-depth information on horse racing, and all of its betting markets for that matter. You’ll also find a staggering amount of races to choose from, most of which you can live stream, too.

It even throws the occasional horse racing promotion into the mix, so make sure you check out what’s available before placing your each-way bet at Ladbrokes.

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