How Does a Placepot Work? Placepots Betting Explained

Date IconLast Updated: 6 Mar 2023
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The Tote placepot is the UK and Ireland’s favourite horse racing pool bet, offering punters the chance to win large payouts from small stakes, without even having to pick a winner. Betting on the Tote placepot is available for every racing meeting at Tote, one of our favourite betting sites.

To win by betting on the placepot, bettors just have to select a placed horse in races 1-6 on a selected race card, with their stake then going into a pool, and that pool then being divided between the winners.

The average placepot dividend is €407 from a €1 stake and the record placepot dividend is €91,774.50 from a €1 stake, achieved at the 2015 Cheltenham Festival.

At the 2019 Cheltenham Festival, one punter landed €182,568 from a €2 placepot. At a massive €91,283.10 from a €1 stake, it fell just short of the biggest ever placepot.

If this sounds like your kind of bet, then read on as this page explains everything about how to bet on the placepot.

Read More: Check out Cheltenham free bets from licensed betting sites

What is a Placepot Bet?

To place a bet on the placepot pool, punters must first select one horse in each of the first six races at their chosen horse racing meeting. Any number of extra horses can also be selected for each race, but the more horses in the bet, the more the bet costs.

How Does a Placepot Work?

Placepots might sound complicated, but they are an easy bet to work out once you get your head around them. The first step when explaining placepots is working out how it is calculated. When calculating the total cost of your overall placepot bet, you simply multiply your chosen stake by the number of selections picked in six races:

  • e.g. if you have two horses in each race and your stake is 20p, your total bet would be: 2 x 2 x 2 x 2 x 2 x 2 x 0.2 = €12.80 (64 bets x 20p).

That is a very popular type of placepot bet, but there are any number of different placepot permutations to play with. Here are two other popular types of placepots:

  • Straight Lines - Pick one horse in each of the first six races. Stake a minimum of €1 to play: 1 x 1 x 1 x 1 x 1 x 1 - One line with a €10 unit stake = €10 total spend.
  • 4 Bankers - Pick one horse in four races and two in two: 2 x 1 x 1 x 1 x 2 x 1 - Four lines with a €2.50 unit stake = €10 total spend.

The two things to remember are that the minimum unit stake is €0.10 ( €0.10 on each horse selected), and that the placepot dividend is paid to the pound - so you get the amount listed in the placepot dividend for every pound you staked, with rounding occurring for incomplete pounds.

Read More: Get the very best Cheltenham Gold Cup Odds for the 2024 Festival

Where to Place a Placepot Bet

The placepot is a pool bet, controlled by the Tote placepot in the UK or Tote placepot Ireland in Ireland. You can make your placepot bet on-course at the Tote placepot betting window, via the Tote placepot online.

What Places Are In The Tote Placepot?

The placings considered places for the purposes of the placepot change depending on how many horses run in the race. If you want to work out whether you horse has placed, this is how many places are paid in the placepot by the number of runners per race:

Number Of RunnersPlaces in Placepot
Up to 4 runners1st
5, 6, or 7 runners1st, 2nd
8-15 runners in handicaps1st, 2nd, 3rd
8+ runners in non-handicaps1st, 2nd, 3rd
16+ runners in handicaps1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th

What Happens if You Have a Non-Runner in a Placepot?

If any horse you select for your placepot bet is a non-runner, your stake will be placed on the SP favourite - the horse that starts the race as the favourite. If there are joint or co-favourites, then your money will go on to the favourite with the lowest saddlecloth number.

Read More: Compare the best Grand National Odds

How to Win The Tote Placepot

Favourites are the placepot dividend’s enemy; the smallest payouts come when the favourite places in every leg of the bet as they will nearly always be the most-selected runner by players, so it pays to avoid the favourite when betting on the placepot if you can find something else to hit the places instead.

A popular Tote placepot betting strategy is picking a few banker selections, and building a bigger group of runners in your placepot perm for trickier races. A placepot selection is considered a banker if it is the only horse you decide to choose in the race. It means you have put all your faith in that one horse.

Picking your placepot bankers is a key opening step to building your placepot perm. Look for a consistent horse, who might not always win, but always runs well and finishes in the placings the majority of the time - or go all in with the odds on a favourite who just shouldn't get beat. Once you have your banker, or bankers, aim to pick at least two horses in each of the other races to increase the chances when the choice is less obvious.

By picking a banker or bankers, you keep the number of bets in your placepot perm manageable rather than staking lots trying to cover all eventualities. There is lots of skill required in landing the Tote placepot consistently, but there is lots of luck needed too. It's one of the bets that offers a chance for huge rewards from a small stake, allows for an interest throughout the card at a race meeting and truly adds to a day at the races or a day spent watching them at home on the TV.

Other Popular Pool Bets

If you enjoy betting on the placepot, you might also be interested in betting on other race-by-race pool bets. The Tote Placepot has a wide array of horse racing pool betting options, all available to bet on through the best betting apps and sites:

Bet TypePool Bet Explained
QuadpotThe quadpot is similar to the placepot, but includes four races instead of six. Pick at least one horse in each race, and if they all place, you get a return.
JackpotThe jackpot bet is available on one meeting every day, except Saturday. Pick a horse in the first six races, and if they all win, you win your share of the pool. It’s extremely hard to win, so rollovers are common and payouts massive.
Scoop 6The Scoop 6 replaces the Jackpot on Saturdays. The aim is to pick the winner of six selected races, usually all shown live on terrestrial television. The pools can often grow well above €1million, with three separate funds paying out: the win, bonus and place funds.

Placepot Betting on The Cheltenham Festival

As with any meeting, you can place a Placepot bet on any races at the Cheltenham Festival. Cheltenham is one of the biggest horse racing betting events of the year, so it's no surprise that placepots are always popular. With 4 days of racing to look forward to, that' 4 potential Cheltenham placepots to be placed. If you're looking for general Cheltenham betting, you can find the latest Cheltenham Festival Odds right here at

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