Exotic Bet Types on the Tote

Having introduced you to betting on horses to win or to place on the Tote, we now come to the range of other types of bet available on the Tote. These are known as ‘exotics’. Some of them can be used to bet on multiple horses in one race; some can be used to bet on single or multiple horses, in multiple races – either to win or to place. They are as follows:


• ToteExacta

• ToteTrifecta

• ToteSwinger

• ToteJackpot

• ToteScoop6

• TotePlacepot

• ToteQuadpot


Single race exotics


An Exacta is the equivalent of a forecast, and requires the bettor to pick the first two finishers in a race. There are a few versions of the ToteExacta, but the most simple is a Straight Exacta – a single bet where you pick the first two home in the correct order. The next simplest in the Reverse Exacta, which (like a reverse forecast) adds the same bet again in the reverse order. As this covers two possibilities, it will cost you two stakes.

Alternatively, you could go for a Combination Exacta, where you pick two or more horses to finish first and second. This bet means you can cover several alternative winning results, because you’re betting on two, three or more horses to finish first and second, in any order. Remember though – for each permutation you add, you multiply your stake. For example:

 Horse A wins, Horse B 2nd

Horse A wins, Horse C 2nd

Horse B wins, Horse A 2nd

Horse B wins, Horse C 2nd

Horse C wins, Horse A 2nd

Horse C wins, Horse B 2nd

Here there are six different permutations, so you would have to multiply your stake by six.

Finally, you could opt for a Banker Exacta. With this bet, you select the horse you think will win – your banker – and can cover the permutations for any number of other horses to finish second.


The Trifecta is the equivalent of a tri-cast in fixed-odds betting, and is essentially the same as an Exacta – only it involves picking the first three horses home rather than the first two.

Similarly, you can place a Straight Trifecta – picking the first three home in the correct order; a Combination Trifecta – adding extra horses to the bet and covering extra permutations; or a Banker Trifecta, where you keep the same horse to finish first but cover different permutations of horses finishing second and third.

Another note to remember would be that for the Exacta and Trifecta, non-runners will render any line featuring that horse as void. This means that even if you correctly pick the first two horses home in a Trifecta, the bet would be void – it does not become an Exacta.


Similar to the above two races, the Swinger requires you to correctly select two horse to be placed in the first three in a race. They can place in any order, but you can perm both selections for a race or keep a banker and perm the alternatives.

Want to learn more about when to place each type of bet? Read our guide here.


Multiple-race exotics


Like the Scoop6, this bet requires you to pick the winners of six different races, though it differs from the Scoop6 in format. The Jackpot is a daily pool that asks bettors to name the winners of the first six races from one UK meeting, selected daily by the Tote. 

If you’re unsure of which horse to go with in any race, you can also select to side with whichever horse goes off favourite. If your original selection is a non-runner, you’ll also get the unnamed favourite, automatically, for that leg of your bet (or the co-favourite with the lowest racecard number if there are multiple favourites).

Like any other bet with the Tote, you also have the option to perm your bet – whether that be for just one race, for every race, or a selection. You can add in as many horses as you like, but this will multiply your stake exponentially. For instance, a £1 stake with two or three horses selected in some races would add up like so:

£1 stake 

x 2 (two horses in race 1)

x 1 (one horse in race 2)

x 3 (three horses in race 3)

x 2 (two horses in race 4)

x 1 (one horse in race 5)

x 2 (two horses in race 6)

= total bet stake of £24


The flagship Tote bet, the Scoop6 runs every Friday and Saturday, and requires punters to name the winners of six races of the Tote’s choosing, from across the UK cards. Costing £2 per line, this popular bet usually creates large pools of prize money – especially when there are no winners at a meeting, resulting in a prize fund ‘rollover’ that can get well into the millions. 

Winners are also eligible to play for the bonus – an extra prize pot which can amount to millions itself, and can be won by picking the winner of a further race on the following Scoop6 day.

Part of the reason the bet costs more is because it includes a place fund as well as a win fund, meaning that if all your horses are placed, you still have a chance of taking home prize money – which can reach the tens of thousands.

Whilst the difficulty of winning is high, as always with Tote betting: the return depends on the prize pool and the number of winners as opposed to your stake. Therefore, whilst fixed-odds betting may give you a guaranteed shot at winning a fixed amount of money, the Tote effectively transforms your selections into a lottery ticket. 

What do we mean by this? Well, let’s say there is a Scoop6 prize pool of £1 million. Your six selections have industry prices as follows:

• Horse 1: Evs

• Horse 2: 4/1

• Horse 3: 5/1

• Horse 4: 1/2

• Horse 5: 10/1

• Horse 6: 7/2

• Combined odds: 4049/1

This means that to get a return of £1 million from a fixed-odds bookmaker (remembering all bookmakers have maximum pay-outs, which for many this would be well over), you’d have to have staked £246.91 on a bet that has an implied chance of winning of one in four-and-a-half-thousand. With the Tote Scoop6 meanwhile, the same line – or any other line – would cost you just £2. So if you were the only winner, that would be the equivalent of getting odds of 500,000/1 on the same six horses!

Of course, you wouldn’t be guaranteed the whole figure if you won on the Tote, as others may have picked the same line. But it would take 124 people choosing the same winning line as you to mean your £2 would’ve been better spent at a normal bookmaker.

Multiple-race place-betting exotics


The Placepot is one of the Tote’s most popular bets and the most popular exotic, and therefore often accumulates a large prize pool. It requires you to pick a horse to be placed in all six pre-defined legs on a card, and is often permed to include multiple horses in multiple races. 


Last up is the Quadpot: a bet that sounds like a Tote version of the four-fold accumulator, but is in effect a consolation pool for those out of the Placepot after the first two races, with rules more or less the same but for races three to six.

Want to learn more about when to place each type of bet? Read our guide here.