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What is an Accumulator Bet on Horse Racing?

An Accumulator, more commonly referred to as ‘an acca’ is a bet placed on four or more horses in one bet and all horses must win to yield a return.

How do accumulator bets work? The winnings from your first bet rolls on to the next horse and the maximum number of horses you can have in an accumulator is twenty, also known as a twenty-fold accumulator.

Only one selection must lose for the bet to be void. A €1 accumulator costs €1 and the return depends on the winning odds of the horses in the accumulator.

The accumulator along with the Lucky 15 and Lucky 31 bets are among the most popular bets with horse racing punters.

How to Place an Accumulator Bet in Horse Racing

Placing an accumulator bet is very straightforward. You can follow the steps below to ensure it is a smooth process.

  • Once you have studied the form and chosen your selections, head to the website of your preferred bookmaker.
  • Click on the ‘horse racing’ tab this will take you through to the horse racing meetings.
  • Click on the meeting of your choice and the races will appear
  • Find the selection you would like to bet on
  • Click on the odds of your selection
  • This will bring up the betslip
  • Add all your horses to the betslip
  • Tick the box for ‘accumulator’
  • Type in the amount you would like to bet
  • Click the ‘place bet’ button

Types of Accumulator Bets

Accumulators require a minimum of four selections although you can add up to twenty horses if you are feeling confident!

Number of SelectionsType of Accumulator Bet
4Four-fold Accumulator
5Five-fold Accumulator
6Six-fold Accumulator
7Seven-fold Accumulator
8Eight-fold Accumulator

Accumulator Bets Example

You will find a detailed explanation below of a four-fold accumulator and how to calculate your winnings if your bet is successful.

Horse 1 to winWon at 2-1
Horse 2 to winWon at 3-1
Horse 3 to winWon at 4-1
Horse 4 to winWon at 5-1

If all four of your horses win the payout can be very rewarding. The easiest way to calculating your winnings is converting the fractions to decimals initially (shown below in brackets) and adding your stake.

SelectionDecimal Odds
Horse 1Won at 2-1 (3)
Horse 2Won at 3-1 (4)
Horse 3Won at 4-1 (5)
Horse 4Won at 5-1 (6)
Acca total359-1 (360)

Total returns would be €359 plus €1 stake = €360

Are Accumulator Bets Worth it?

If you have a few strong fancies and the odds are fairly short, it is always worth a go at an accumulator as the returns for a small stake can be very rewarding. It is worth remembering though, that due to the increased number of selections, risk is higher as it only takes one bet to lose for the bet to be void.

A safer option for an acca is to choose an each-way accumulator bet if your fancies are decent prices. The chances of your horses being placed is higher although it means your stake will be higher. Returns on an each-way acca can still be very good for a modest stake.

What is an Each Way Accumulator Bet?

An each-way accumulator is the choice of many punters as the risk is lowered. This bet comprises two bets - for your chosen horses to win and to be placed. As a result your stake is doubled. Using the example above your stake would be €2 instead of €1.

The win part of the bet would need all four horses to win to make a return on that although if one horse loses, you will not receive the full return.

If three horses win and one horse places, you will receive an each-way payout on all your selections.

Your total winnings can be calculated by taking the original odds for each selection and applying the each-way fraction, which is usually 1/5 of the odds.

In the 359/1 accumulator example above, divide the original odds by 1/5, then multiply them together you will get the odds for your ‘place’ part of the bet.

Tips on Horse Racing Accumulator Bets

If you have four fancies which are strong favourites, it makes much more sense to add the horses to an accumulator bet than to place a bet on each horse separately. This is because you are able to yield a profitable return from one winner.

There are different types of multiple bets - a Lucky 15 or a yankee are alternative options. Ensure that you choose the bookmaker with the best odds to maximise your chances of a decent return.

As mentioned above if your fancies are big prices and warrant an each way bet, then it is well worth placing an easy way accumulator.

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We have a whole host of betting information to keep you informed on horse racing and betting - you will be an expert in no time if you follow the information below on types of bets and handicapping.