New Jersey Online Horse Racing Betting Guide

Horse racing’s long history in the Garden State was on the brink of failure in the last decade. Visitor numbers were lower than ever and lack of sponsors were severely hurting the industry. Ever since the opening of Freehold Raceway in 1830, horse tracks were one of the leading entertainment sources in New Jersey. Luckily, the Supreme Court’s ruling to legalize sports betting once again has provided a lifeline for the beloved horse-tracks. 

Opening up the opportunity to bet on the races is not only limited to the New Jersey tracks. Hundreds of race tracks, domestic and international, are ready to take your action. From world-renowned races like ‘The Everest’ and the ‘Kentucky Derby’ to smaller ones in Uruguay or India. 

Now that we can finally place a wager again on this sport, we hear many questions from bettors about the seemingly complicated structure of betting on horses. While it does look quite tricky, here at Betting Guide NJ, we present you an easy to understand guide. We will explain to you the variety of bets to be made and guide you through basic strategies for the first time player. 

What can you find in this article?

  • Why you should bet on horse racing online
  • Type of horse bets
  • Horse betting strategies and tips

Why online horse betting is the way to go

Going to the racetracks has always captured peoples’ imagination. The smell, noise, and tension will get the blood pumping. Although this sounds appealing, taking your action to the online platform has significant advantages. Let’s take a look at the differences between online vs. offline horse betting.

Wider availability of markets 

Being at a racetrack limits you to that specific one. The day can be packed with races, but it might not be enough to satisfy your needs. Your favorite for the win canceling at the last minute, odds not being good enough. 

Online horse betting rarely has this problem, mainly because of the full range of markets accessible to you. Also, with the ability to live-stream most events, you can see the action unfold in front of your eyes, and not be limited to looking at stat sheets.   

Research and adaptability

More in-depth research into the horses is necessary for the making of a calculated wager. What shape they are in and how many races they ran in the last few months can be of great importance to the horse’s odds. When you are sitting in the comfort of your own home, this research can be done fast and efficiently, while this is harder at the tracks. 

Sure, being near the horses themselves can provide crucial information for predicting the outcome. With online betting, you are less adaptable last minute and might not have the latest scoops, but you can research better.

Bonus offers and promotions

The approach of betting at the track is simple, place a wager, and you either win or lose. Online betting has seriously changed the way we look at horse betting. Welcome bonuses, invite-a-friend incentives, free bets, all these are offered up by the online betting platforms. 

We can give no better tip than to look for the best value in a bet. Bonuses and promotions add direct value to any wager you make, as long as it’s online. Check multiple horse betting sites to see what they can give you. Also, make sure to read the terms and conditions of each bonus, you don’t want to get surprised later on.

Type of online horse racing bets

Knowing the basic bets is vital to correctly understanding horse racing. With the basics down, you instantly see what you are getting into. There are only a couple of types of horse racing bets, and all of them are quite simple.

  • Win – If your chosen horse finishes 1st, you win. High payouts are commonly found here.
  • Place – You win this bet when your horse finishes first or second. Payouts are a little less than with a win.
  • Show – To win this bet, your horse needs to finish either first, second, or third. This wager pays the least out of these three basic bets.

That’s all the basic bets that you can place on horse races. Many people will stick to these bets and don’t look any further. However, you can take a step further and explore some of the other types of horse racing bets. While more advanced and challenging to get right, the rewards can be amazing.

Advanced horse racing online bets

  • Quinella – Pick two horses that will place first and second, regardless of the order they finish in.
  • Exacta – Same as the quinella bet, except the order in which they finish the race needs to be picked too.
  • Trifecta – This bet is similar to the exacta, except that now you pick three horses.
  • Superfecta – Also similar to the exacta bet, but now you have to pick four horses to come first, second, third, and fourth in the right order.
  • Daily Double – An extremely entertaining bet because of the immense rewards that it can reap. Pick two horses for two different races. If they win, you win the lottery.
  • Pick 3/4/6 – The ultimate horse racing bet. Choose your winners for six consecutive races. This bet is pretty much a thinking man’s lottery. As you can imagine, payouts are insanely high for getting this one correct.

Now that you know all the online bets it’s important to look at different strategies for becoming a successful horse racing bettor.

Horse race online betting strategies and tips

Picking your favorite based on the odds given by the bookie can definitely turn a profit. Placing a bet on the horse with the funniest name is also a possibility. When you actually want to create the best chances for yourself, it’s essential to use a strategy. 

Currently, there are complicated software systems to calculate which is the winning horse. Bookmakers use these to work out what the odds should be. You don’t need these complicated systems to find your strategy. There are more straightforward methods to devise a proper winning plan. Let’s look at some of them.


The Dutching method is a tried and tested betting strategy that involves quite a bit of calculation. By sizing up the possibilities of different outcomes, you are aiming to win the same amount of money with each bet. Regardless of which horse wins, you have ensured a profit. 

This strategy starts with choosing how much money you are willing to stake. Let’s say you see two horses that are able to win, you’ll probably be tempted to place two equal bets. Using Dutching, you will find there is a specific splitting of the stake to cover both outcomes while ensuring profit. There are many examples of Dutching calculations to be found online, or you can devise your own math model. 

Despite being very popular, this system is not advisable for beginners, since it requires excellent math skills. Still, it offers a high return, which is why so many gamblers love it.

Laying the favorite

Laying the favorite is when you bet against the favorite to win a race in a betting exchange. While it doesn’t seem very sensible, it’s a profitable strategy if used correctly. A lay bet is when you act as the bookmaker, betting against an outcome rather than betting on one. Gambling statistics show that only a third of the time, the favorite wins. With this knowledge betting on underdogs surely makes more sense. 

To start off, we only recommend using this strategy when it involves top tier races. Higher tier races provide more information on the competition and attract a bigger crowd of bettors. Inexperienced punters will wager on the favorite, making the odds for other competitors more favorable. 

To make this strategy work, you’ll have to lay against a favorite with odds of 3/1 or below. Anything higher than that can damage your bank. Knowing handicaps is very important as well since it’ll help you identify the underdogs.

Value Betting

Not so much a horse racing specific bet, finding value is common in all of the sports betting markets. This strategy involves you spotting the value bet where bookies underestimate the odds of a horse winning. At the very minimum, this strategy requires you to perfect your handicap game, which involves looking at prior records and form. 

Once you learn how to spot a good value bet, you can maximize your profits quickly.

Horse Racing Strategy FAQ

  • What happens to my bet if my horse doesn't compete?

    Don't worry, in this instance, your bet will be nullified, and your wager will be returned to you.
  • When can I start betting on the race?

    This depends on the online betting site of choice. Some options allow bets to happen as early as 24 hours before the race. The betting window closes right before the race.
  • What happens when horses finish in a dead heat?

    Sometimes, even cameras will not be able to determine which of two horses finished ahead of the other. This is known as a dead heat and creates a tie for those two positions. In these cases, both horses are considered to have finished in both places.