Forecast Betting Explained

Forecast Betting Explained

If you’re an avid horse racing fan, you’ve surely heard (or even tried) the forecast bet. It’s a bit of a different wager than backing up a horse and falls in the category of exotic bets. It means that you need a bit more knowledge of horse racing betting to try it out, and that’s exactly what this article aims to provide.

In this forecast bet explained guide, we’ll tell you a bit more about this type of wager and arm you with the knowledge to become successful.

What Is a Forecast Bet?

The forecast is a special bet where a punter tries to predict the 2 horses to pass the finish line. It’s a bet available on the horse and greyhound races and an important part of horse racing betting. As a punter, placing a forecast means choosing the horses to finish 1st and 2nd in that particular order. It is called a straight forecast prediction bet. Although there are 2 other types, you can bet on them.

These are the reverse forecast that allows you to pick the horses in any order and a combination forecast involving 3 horses and 6 bets.

How to Work Out a Forecast Bet

Forecasts are not hard to understand once you get the hang of them. Instead of choosing one horse as the winner, you’re predicting which 2 horses finish in the 2 top spots. That’s only for the straight forecast bet. The reverse and combination spice things up a bit, allowing you to pick a random order or bring a third horse into the equation.

As long as you place a straight forecast, you’re betting on 2 horses to finish first and second.

Things to Consider When Placing a Forecast

To successfully place a forecast, you should think hard about it. Picking a single horse to win a race is hard enough, but choosing the first 2 finishers is harder. You can’t just put your money on random horses and hope for the best.

  • Bookies usually have a field of 3 horses on forecasts
  • The more your bets differ from the favourites, the harder it will be to get it right
  • Make sure to shop for bet forecast odds to find the best value, as not all bookies offer fixed forecast odds
  • Trust your hunch, but make sure not to go wild with dark horses unless you want to fail
  • When in doubt, a reverse forecast can help

Types of Forecast Bets

You can place 3 types of forecast bets, starting with a straight. However, you can also place bets on the horses to end in reverse order and add a third one for fun.

What Is a Combination Forecast Bet?

The combination forecast bet is the third variant of forecast betting that punters can use to place sports wagers. However, unlike the straight and reverse options, it is much broader and allows bettors to wager on more scenarios. In a combination forecast bet, you can choose three or more selections to make the top two positions in a race. The wager will combine the selections, stating that any combo will finish in the top two spots.

For example, let’s say you add Lewis Hamilton to the selection in the British Grand Prix example above for a combination forecast bet alongside Max Verstappen and Lando Norris.

It will result in six possible permutation bets:

  • 1: Verstappen wins, and Norris finishes second
  • 2: Verstappen wins, and Hamilton finishes second
  • 3: Norris wins, and Verstappen finishes second
  • 4: Norris wins, and Hamilton finishes second
  • 5: Hamilton wins, and Verstappen finishes second
  • 6: Hamilton wins, and Norris finishes second

As you can see, this will result in six separate bets in a single wager. The amount of wager you will need to stake will also reflect this, as it will cover each wager. You will need one of the six combinations to win this bet. If none of the combinations happens (i.e., another driver other than your three selections wins or finishes second), you lose the entire stake.

The best part about the combination forecast bet is that you can cover more selections up to six, which improves the winning chance. Of course, this also increases the stake you will need to wager.

Here is the number of bets you will need to cover based on your selections:

  • Three selections: 6 bets
  • Four selections: 12 bets
  • Five selections: 20 bets
  • Six selections: 30 bets

Dual Forecast Bet Explained

The dual forecast bet is another name for the reverse forecast betting market. It involves predicting which two participants will be in the top two spots in a sporting event. The order in which the selections come in doesn’t matter as long. This betting option works like the Queen Mother Champion Chase horse race example we explained earlier.

Like the straight forecast alternative, the dual (reverse) forecast bet applies to various sports, and you will find different sportsbooks offering the markets to betting enthusiasts. 

Let’s look at how this betting option works in some sports.

What Is a Dual Forecast Bet in Golf?

Golf is one of the non-racing sports that is also an excellent option for forecast betting, including the dual forecast option. Today most reliable sportsbook payouts are offered across various golf tournaments, especially during the four major golf Championships.

The exciting thing about the dual forecast in sports is that it doesn’t work like the standard racing forecast bets, which target individual races. Instead, this option focuses on the outcome of the overall competitions and tournaments. So, punters must predict the winner and runner-up for a golf tournament.

For example, you can place a dual forecast bet on Rory Mcllroy and Scottie Scheffler to rank in the top two positions during an upcoming US Open golf championship. You will win this dual forecast wager if Mcllroy finishes first and Scheffler finishes second. You also win the bet if Scheffler finishes first and Mcllroy places second. Any other outcome that deviates from this will result in a losing bet.

What Is a Dual Forecast Bet in Football?

The dual forecast bet also applies to football, and you can find some sportsbooks that offer betting market opportunities here to punters.

The dual forecast bet in football doesn’t work like any typical bet that involves wagering on specific events. Instead, the market targets outright bets around the overall competition, tournament, or league. Here, you will predict the winner (1st place) and runner-up (2nd place) for football tournaments like the English Premier League, the Spanish La Liga, the UEFA Champions League, etc.

For example, you want to place a dual forecast bet on the upcoming Spanish La Liga season. Based on your research and analysis, you believe Barcelona and Real Madrid have the highest shot at finishing in the top two places. You can choose these two teams for a dual forecast bet. To win this wager, Barcelona and Real Madrid must finish as the winner and runner-up – It doesn’t matter who finishes where. The bet will naturally lose if either selections fail to reach the top two.

What Is a Dual Forecast Bet in F1?

As a racing sport where multiple participants compete for the win, Formula 1 is an excellent sport for dual forecast bets. With these events, you typically have 20 drivers racing to the finish line, and any of them could emerge as the winner.

The dual forecast bet allows punters to predict two drivers to reach the top two positions in no exact order. As long as the selections you pick make it to the first and second places, you will win the bet. It won’t matter which of the two drivers comes first.

For example, imagine you want to bet on the British Grand Prix Formula 1 race with 20 drivers participating. Out of the 20, you believe that Max Verstappen and Lando Norris are the contenders for the first and second positions but are not sure who will finish where. In such a situation, you can easily place a reverse forecast bet.

You need Max Verstappen and Lando Norris to take the top two spots to win this bet. Whether it is Norris or Verstappen that wins the race does not matter. However, you will lose the bet if any or both drivers finish in other places besides the top two.

What Is a Straight Forecast Bet?

The first and standard type of forecast betting is called the straight forecast wager. This type of wagering is where punters select two participants in a sporting event to win the first and second positions in exact order. It means you will assign which participant will win the first position and which will come in second. The sporting event would have to end in the exact order that a punter has predicted to win this bet.

For example, let’s say you are interested in betting on an 8-horse racing event and like Horse 4 and Horse 7 for the top two positions. You will then have to decide which position you think each will place, like in the table below.

1st 2nd
Horse 1
Horse 2
Horse 3
Horse 4
Horse 5
Horse 6
Horse 7
Horse 8

Horse 1 must be the race winner, with Horse 7 in the second position to win this straight forecast wager., Any other outcome will be a loss. Even if the two horses win the top two spots but with reversed positions (i.e., Horse 7 in first and Horse 4 in second place), you will lose the wager. As a result, you should only engage in a straight forecast bet if you are confident of your selections.

Due to its nature, the straight forecast wager is famous in race-based sports like horse racing, motorsports racing, and cycling. However, this betting opportunity has also become quite popular for a few non-racing sports like football, golf, and others. Now, let’s explore how the bets work on a few sports.

What Is a Straight Forecast Bet in Greyhound Racing?

Besides horse racing, greyhound racing is another sport well-suited for straight forecast bets. The sport works similarly to horse racing except that it involves greyhounds racing against each other. In greyhound straight forecast betting, you will predict which greyhounds will come first and second during the race. It works like the straight option for horse racing we explained earlier.

For example, let’s say that 8-greyhound race. Out of the eight greyhounds in the race, you have to pick which one will come first and which will come second. Let’s say you believe Greyhound 1 will win the race and Greyhound 5 will come in second. The event must end with the exact order you predicted for you to win the bet. Any other outcome that deviates from this will result in a loss.

What Is a Straight Forecast Bet in Motor Racing?

Forecast betting is a famous market offered to punters in motorsport racing like Formula 1 and NASCAR. In any motorsport race, around 20 to 40 drivers typically compete for first place, and anyone can win. The straight forecast bet capitalizes on this, allowing players to predict which drivers will end up in the top two spots and the exact order they will finish.

Let’s say you want to place a forecast wager on the prestigious Saudi Arabian Grand Prix Formula 1 race. Imagine that out of the 20 participating drivers, you believe Sergio Perez and Fernando Alonso have the highest chance of finishing in the top two spots. As seen in the table below, you have to assign the order the two drivers will come in.

1st 2nd
Sergio Perez
Fernando Alonso

As with other sports’ straight bets, Sergio Perez has to be the race winner, with Alonso as the runner-up, for you to win this bet. Any other outcome will result in a losing wager.

What Is a Straight Forecast Bet in Golf?

Many sportsbooks offer straight forecast bets for golf competitions and tournaments that punters can use. However, the market works differently from horse racing, motorsports, and other racing sports. The straight forecast bet in golf targets who will finish in a tournament or event’s first and second positions.

For example, let’s say that a sportsbook offers a dual forecast in the US Masters tournament. Based on the lineup, you believe John Rahm and Scottie Scheffler are the top contenders for the first and second positions. You can assign the two golfers to the first and second places.

1st 2nd
John Rahm
Scottie Scheffler

Naturally, you will only win this bet if John Rahm wins the race and Scottie Scheffler places second. Any other outcome that deviates from this will result in a loss.

What Is a Straight Forecast Football Bet?

The straight forecast bet is also offered on the football market. However, unlike in the racing type of event, football forecast doesn’t involve wagering on the outcome of each event. Instead, you will bet outright on the top two candidates for the competition, tournament, or league.

For example, let’s say that you want to place a straight forecast football bet on the English Premier League. And out of the 20 participating teams, you believe Manchester United and Arsenal have the best shot at coming out on top. You will then have to decide the order the two teams will come in like in this table:

1st 2nd
Manchester United

To win this wager, Manchester United must win first place, with Arsenal as the runner-up that season. You will lose the bet if the places are reversed, or either team does not show in their exact positions.

Reverse Forecast

Like the straight forecast bet, the reverse forecast is another variant of this betting option: you predict two horses to finish in the first and second positions in a race. The only significant difference here is that with the reverse forecast wager, it doesn’t matter which order the participants finish. As long as the two selections occupy the first two places in the sporting events, you will win the bet.

This option is an excellent choice for when punters can predict which participants will end up in the top two positions during an event but are unsure of the order they will place. For example, let’s say that you decide to bet on the Queen Mother Champion Chase race during the Cheltenham Festival. And looking at the lineup, you believe that Paul Townsend atop Energumene and Rachael Blackmore on top Captain Guinness will have the best chance to be in the top two positions. You can choose these two selections for a reverse bet.

You need Paul Townsend on Energumene and Rachael Blackmore on Captain Guinness to fill the first and second positions to win this bet. Unlike the straight forecast option, it doesn’t matter which order they come in as long as they finish as the top two riders and horses. Naturally, this will be a losing bet if any of the two selections fail to reach the predicted positions.

Forecast Bets Alternatives

Let`s compare forecast betting with other popular bet types available.

Forecast vs Exacta

Another excellent alternative to this betting option that punters can try is the Exacta bet, also known as Perfecta. The concept of this market is the same as that of the forecast in that you will select two horses to finish as the winner and runner-up in the exact order.

The only significant difference between the bet options is that Totepool typically runs the Exacta market. Instead of placing wagers with traditional online sportsbooks, these bets are placed into a pool of money wagered together with other punters. Any winnings gotten in the pool will then be divided across to every winning punter, with the amount depending on the number of winners and the amount of their wagers.

The table below compares the two options:

Forecast Exacta
  • Predicts the winner and runner-up in an exact order during a race or event
  • Run by bookmakers on online sportsbooks and bookmakers
  • The payout depends on the staked amount and odds provided by bookmakers
  • Predicts the winner and runner-up in an exact order during a race or event
  • Run by Totepool
  • The payout here depends on the number of winners in the pool and the staked amount

Tricast Bet

Punters can explore other exciting betting alternatives similar to forecast bets when they wager online. One such alternative is the Tricast bet.

Now what is a Tricast bet? This option is similar to the forecast alternative, except it doesn’t involve picking the top two finishers. Instead, the Tricast bet requires punters to pick the participants that will fill the top three positions in an event (i.e., the first, second, and third finishers) in the exact order. To win this bet, your selections emerge in the top three places in the event and in the exact order you assign to each.

For example, let’s say that you want to place a Tricast wager during an 8-runner greyhound race. Out of the eight runners, you believe Runner 5, Runner 2, and Runner 4 have the best chance of making it to the top three. To place a Tricast bet here, you must assign each runner’s order, like in the table below.

1st 2nd 3rd
Runner 1
Runner 2
Runner 3
Runner 4
Runner 5
Runner 6
Runner 7
Runner 8

You will win this wager if Runner 1 comes first, Runner 5 in second place, and Runner 2 in third place. You will lose the bet if any of the three selections finish in a different order than you assign.

Like the forecast, this option is suitable for racing sports like horse racing, formula 1, NASCAR, and others. It is also available for sports like football, golf, ice hockey, etc.

Final Words

The forecast is a great bet that packs more punch than a single bet. It’ll cost a bit more, but getting it right can be pretty lucrative. Why choose the winner when you can also select the runner-up?

Our gamble experts hope our straight and reverse forecast bet explained guide helped you realize what this bet promises. Try it on a horse race right now, and you’ll see why it’s a favourite one for thousands of racegoers.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • What is a reverse forecast bet?
    A reverse forecast bet is just what it says – it allows punters to pick the first 2 horses to pass the finish line, but now they can pass in any order.
  • What is a forecast from 3?
    Any forecast that includes 3 runners or more is a combination forecast bet.
  • What is a forecast dividend?
    The forecast dividend in sports betting represents the amount of money bet into the pool and how many punters got the winning forecast bet.
  • Still have questions?
    Ask our experts
Rebecca E
Writer & Media

Rebecca is a Liverpool gal and a big fan of the club. She likes nothing more than sharing tips and predictions on sports betting. Her other favorite sports include horse racing, snooker, and golf. Rebecca is in charge of writing and media at BetZillion. You can thank her for making our articles look so great.

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