Trifecta Horse Racing Betting

A “trifecta bet” at horse racing betting sites involves choosing the first three finishers in a race. In a basic trifecta bet, the three horses must be selected in the exact order in which they finish in the top three. Betting variations that allow more leeway are covered here later.

Trifecta betting at horse tracks and horse racing betting websites is very popular and is usually offered on every race. In race track vernacular, a trifecta bet is often referred to simply as a “triple”.

Each track and racebook is different, but trifecta wagers are usually cancelled if a field dips below 6 entered horses.

How Trifecta Betting On Horse Racing Works

Trifectas can be wagered on in “wheels” and “boxes”. These horse racing bets are more popular than straight trifecta wagers, but they cost more and figuring out exact prices for each combination can involve some advanced mathematics.

A trifecta wheel horse bet involves designating a certain horse or horses in the first or first and second positions, followed by a selection of other entries in the remaining slots. A box is paying for three or more horses in every possible combination of finish within the top three. These bets can get pricey, but greatly increase the betting odds of cashing a winning ticket.


The payout price on a winning trifecta horse racing bet varies wildly dependent on the total of money in the trifecta betting pool and the relative odds of each horse that finishes in the top three.

Leading up to post time of a race, there is no chart available to the online betting public on the many specific, different payout combinations in a trifecta.

However, a statistic detailing how much money is being wagered on each individual horse in the trifecta pool should be available to get a feel for potential payouts. Also, watching the win odds is usually fairly reflective of the totals in the trifecta horse racing betting pool.

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