Betfair Exchange: Introduction to Basic Trading

Betfair Exchange: Introduction to Basic Trading
James Boyle
Monday 18th November 2019

We’ve looked at many aspects of the Betfair Exchange, but what techniques can you can use to make a profit? Here we’ll run through a strategy that can be used to exploit the benefits of the Exchange.

Back-To-Lay trading.

Back-To-Lay Trading on the Betfair Exchange:

One of the more popular approaches on the Exchange is the back to lay, where you back a horse pre-race with a view to laying it off for a profit whenever the opportunity arises, be it before the off with a horse you expect to shorten in the market or mid-race with a horse you think will trade lower in-running.

Markets are hard to predict, of course, but certain types of horses tend to shorten significantly during the race based on their track position (often front-runners) or how well they travel on the bridle and we will take a look at how you can approach trying to find a back-to-lay proposition.

For this example, we’re looking at the 5:15pm at Southwell, a Class 4 handicap over 5-furlongs.

The track frequently sees repeat winners, horses coming back to form when encountering the unique fibresand surface and with a 3-5 record around here, Moonraker is one to be interested in on both the “potential market support” and “trade lower in-running” categories; the former as a result of attractive course form and the latter due to his early speed and prominent racing style.

10.5 (9.5/1) is the current price available so for we’re going to place a £10 bet to return £105 if it lands.

However, we’re also going to place a lay bet that will more than likely have to go in-running for any chance of the odds we’ve requested being matched, so make sure to click the “keep” on the at in play section when it shows that our lay bet has been unmatched thus far.

The odds we will hope Moonker hits in-running is 4.0 (3/1) and the stake is £30, for a liability of £90.

We mightn’t necessarily expect Moonraker to win but we don’t need him to. In fact, as seen below, the way the back part and lay part of the bet has been framed leads to a £5 profit should he win the race, but a £20 profit should any of the other 12 horses in opposition emerge victorious.

Of course, we do need the lay portion of our bet to become matched at some point and should the horse lose the race whilst failing to hit the 4.0 (3/1) marker pre-race or during the race, we will lose our back portion which in this case is £10.

Betfair do all of the calculations for us on their site and, as you can see below, our ideal scenario is that the lay horse we’ve chosen is matched but afterwards, he goes on to be defeated by one of the others. In that case, we lose our £10 back bet, but win the backer’s stake from the lay bet, which is £30.

Giving a £20 overall profit.

myracing’s free tips and race previews also give a good indication of how horses are expected to perform and are a valuable resource when researching the daily horse racing cards.

There are numerous other trading approaches you can take on the Betfair Exchange and the above example does take a lot of skill and, indeed, patience to wait for the right opportunities. We will be back later in the series to run through some other strategies considered worthy of taking an in-depth look at.

More in this series:

What is the Betfair Exchange?
Back and Lay Betting Explained
Advantages of Using the Exchange
Placing a Back Bet on the Exchange
Placing a Lay Bet on the Exchange
How to Set Your Own Odds on the Exchange
Arbing and Matched Betting
How does Cashout work?

Please Gamble Responsibly