If you have ever used a “traditional” Bookmaker you have only been able to BACK a horse to
WIN at odds given to you by the Bookmaker. The equivalent odds on a Betting Exchange are
shown under the BACK column. These odds are not dictated by the Bookmaker, although
market forces may bring them closely into line with those of a Bookmaker; they are put there by
individuals, like you, waiting for someone, like you, to take up the offer of a bet.
The first horse in the list, Dami, has odds of 3.85 with an amount of £145. 3.85 represents the
best odds available, with the next best odds queuing up, hoping to become the best odds.
This means that there is £145 on offer at odds of 3.85, which has been placed up on the board
by one person, or is made up of a number of placements from a number of individuals. In future
I will assume it has been placed by one person.
The person offering this bet believes Dami will lose. If you think the horse will win, and wish to
place a bet, the same as using a traditional Bookmaker, then you would click on the odds and
then enter how much of the £145 you wish to take.
Odds and Amounts on Offer can change very quickly, especially when the start of the event is
approaching. Between the time you have decided to place a bet and the time you submit and
confirm, the odds and the amount on offer may no longer be available; someone else may
have taken the bet, or someone withdrew their offer. If all is well and your bet is placed you wil
be informed that your bet has been matched. If, on the other hand, the offer has disappeared
and your bet is not taken then you will be informed that your bet is unmatched. Your
unmatched bet will then be put in a queue to wait for the possibility of the odds being offered
again. You may cancel any bets in the unmatched area any time you wish if you decide you no
longer want to wait for a match to take place.
You may not like the odds being offered. The beauty about a Betting Exchange is that you don’t
have to take what is on offer—you can ask for your own odds, with the hope of being matched.
To the right of the BACK ODDS you will see three columns under the LAY area. These are
odds where a person is asking for his own odds and is waiting to be matched. This would be the
same as writing out a betting slip in a traditional Bookmakers and asking the Bookmaker if he
will accept your bet with the odds and amount you are asking for. The bet is matched if the
Let me explain about asking for your own BACK odds:
I have decided that I want better odds than 3.85
I can see that there are others who are also looking for better odds—4, 4.1 and 4.2 with varying
I don’t want to be too greedy so I’m going to ask for odds of 4 and an amount of £20.
To put my request on the board I’m going to overwrite the 3.85 in the Place Bets area with 4
All I am waiting for now is for a Bookmaker (someone taking on the role of Bookmaker) to
accept the odds and the amount I am asking for.
My request may be taken up straight away, in which case it will be matched, and never hit the
display board. If it is unmatched, I must take my place in the queue, and any similar request to
mine already in the queue, must be matched before mine.
DON’T be confused by a BACK request appearing under the LAY area. I want to BACK a
horse to WIN but the Odds in the BACK area are not to my liking, so I am asking for someone
to accept my bet at Odds I want. Think about it for a second; I want the horse to WIN but
anyone looking for a horse to LOSE will be looking under the LAY area for acceptable odds.
OK. You’ve seen how to BACK to WIN and how to ask for your own odds and amount.
Now go to the next chapter where you will learn another powerful aspect of Betting Exchanges