The Round Robin Racing System

| January 11, 2011 | 52 Replies

This system is based around a little known speciality bet called the round robin.This bet is known to all bookmakers but it is seldom advertised. That’s no surprise, of course. Used appropriately – as in this system – the round robin is a highly punter-friendly bet.

A round robin covers three selections in three different races. It comprises a total
of ten bets in a combination of doubles, trebles and ‘Single Stakes About’ (SSA)
bets. If we refer to your selections as Horses A, B and C, the ten bets in a round
robin are as follows:

Horse A and Horse B, SSA = 2 bets
Horse A and Horse C, SSA = 2 bets
Horse B and Horse C, SSA = 2 bets
Horse A and Horse B, Double = 1 bet
Horse A and Horse C, Double = 1 bet
Horse B and Horse C, Double = 1 bet
Horse A, Horse B and Horse C, Treble = 1 bet

I’ll assume most readers will know about doubles and trebles, but Single Stakes
About may be less familiar. An SSA bet involves backing two selections in
different events. It consists of two singles, each with a single at the same stake
on the other selection. So if the first selection wins, an amount from the winnings
equal to the original stake is placed on the second selection and vice versa.

This is best explained by way of an example, so suppose you placed an SSA bet of £10
each on two horses, Wonder Boy and Lucky Chance, both priced at 3/1. The cost
of this bet is £20. If Wonder Boy wins, then £10 from the proceeds of that bet will
be placed on Lucky Chance, doubling the stakes on this horse to £20. Conversely,
if Lucky Chance wins, £10 from the winnings on this horse will be placed on
Wonder Boy.

The net effect of this bet is therefore to double the stakes (and hence the
winnings) on each selection if both your horses win. If only one horse wins
however, you should still enjoy some return from your winning single.

The great thing about the round robin is that it automatically combines SSA with
other combination bets in such a way that, if you back at the right odds, with just
one winner you will recoup all or most of your stake and with two or more, enjoy
a healthy profit.

For example, let’s say you bet to a £1 unit stake (so the bet costs £10 in total)…

If your three horses are all returned at 5/1:

* If one horse wins, you collect £10 (your money back)
* If two win, you collect £68
* If all three win, you collect £390

So, as you can see, the round robin offers potentially both a high success rate
and first-class profit potential. But how do you choose which horses to back?

Selection Method

To place a round robin bet we need to find three selections per day. You can use
any daily paper with racing coverage for this purpose, though the Daily Mail
would be our top choice as its betting forecasts are generally the most accurate.

1. Eliminate any meetings where the going is predicted to be hard or heavy, as in
such extreme conditions upsets are more common.

2. Eliminate all amateur and ladies’ races, as these races can be something of a
lottery. Non-handicap races should also be eliminated, as they do not have the
right betting profile for this system.

3. Identify the highest-rated horse in each remaining race. Rating figures
normally appear at the far right of the race card. Those in the Daily Mail are
provided by Formcast and the top-rated horse is indicated by a black spot.

4. Check the predicted SP (starting price) for each horse you identified in Step 3
and eliminate any shorter than 3/1. If fewer than three horses remain, there is no
bet that day (this can happen in mid-week especially). With exactly three, these
are your system selections. With more than three, continue as follows…

5. From all the remaining horses, choose the three with the highest forecast
odds. For example, if there are four selections at predicted odds of 5/1, 4/1, 7/2
and 3/1, the horse priced at 3/1 should be eliminated. If there is a tie, choose the
horse with the best form in its most recent race.

In practice, once you are used to applying this system, it should take only a few
minutes to arrive at your selections for the day. Once you have your three
horses, you are almost there. All you have to do now is place your bet.

Betting and Staking

To place a round robin bet, you will require a plain betting slip. All you then need
to do is write down your three selections, the words ‘Round Robin’ and the
amount you wish to stake, as in the example below:

Flying Welshman – Newbury 2.30
Rock Star – Newbury 3.30
Runaway Train – Lingfield 4.35
‘Round Robin’
10 bets @ £1 per bet = £10

Working out the returns from a winning round robin is somewhat time-consuming
but you should nevertheless do it, as bookies can and do make mistakes. If you
don’t want to work out the returns from all ten bets manually (and who could
blame you?), the website Betting Mad has a free ‘Bet Settler’ calculator
which will do the job for you.

The round robin is a powerful yet little-known perm and in conjunction with the
selection system and staking method set out here should deliver you steadily
growing profits month by month.

The Oracle


Tags: , , ,

Category: Betting Systems, Featured

Comments (52)

Trackback URL | Comments RSS Feed

  1. Peter G says:

    Hi Matt

    Looks like fun! Can the Racing Post Website and/or Topspeed ratings be used to make the selections?

  2. Matt Houghton Matt Houghton says:

    Hi Peter,

    Yes, I don’t see why not. The Racing Post site has all the info you need and you can always vary up the selection method a little if you see fit.

    In my eyes, the best part of the system is the value on offer by the round robin perm. When it comes to picking the actual horses you can use the above method but you may also want to use a slight variant or even go full steam ahead with your own selection method.


  3. Kevin R says:

    Hi Matt,

    Very interesting – can the ” round robin ” bet only be used for horseracing ?

  4. Wayne says:

    Hi Matt

    Is there anyway you can go online and use it or do you have to physically go in a bookies?



  5. phil says:

    Are there any online bookmakers where you can place this bet checked a few but Round Robin does not appear when 3 selections are taken
    (just doubles trebles patent etc…)


  6. dave foster says:

    regarding round robins,i have not found any bookies who accept the bet online,most will by phone,and all in the shops.dont forget it is 10 bets,i use them most times when 4/1 plus,but thats my fancy,as a 5/1 guarantees stake back

  7. Matt Houghton Matt Houghton says:

    Kevin – no, you can use the round robin on any sport. It does offer the best value for longer price selections however, so horseracing is the most comfortable fit.

    Wayne/Phil – unfortunately I think you’ll struggle to find the bet online. As the Oracle mentions at the top of the piece, the round-robin is not a bet that bookies like to accept (due to it offering much more value to the bettor than other multiples).

    If you go into any bookmakers 95% should take the bet and all of them will know about it. However, it is unlikely to be presented as an online option.


  8. Terry M says:

    The Round Robin has always been a great favourite of mine and have extended it by always having 3 WIN singles as well just for insurance
    ########################################################################### As far as staking is concerned, if one or more selections are priced more than 5/1 I tend to vary the Round Robin as follows ( still staking £10 ) 3 x 90p Win SSA, 3 x 65p EW Doubles (ED) and 1 x 35p EW Treble (ED), which of course would have to be hand written on the slip. Stakes shown are fairly proportionate but can be anything.
    Would anyone know if there are any bookies online who accept the Round Robin? and does anyone remember the Dundee Shuffle, a bookies nightmare that involved 4 selections? Good Luck.

  9. Dave says:

    Hi Matt,

    Is there such a bet as an e/w all e/w Round Robin?

  10. Charles E says:

    Hi Terry,

    Try Stan James. Stan James accept round robin bets online, but you cannot stake on individual selections. You can only have one stake, which is then split into ten EQUAL parts for you.


  11. Matt Houghton Matt Houghton says:

    Hi Dave,

    As far as I know, yes you can place an e/w round robin.

    And Charles, thanks for the tip! I hadn’t realised that Stan James took the bet.


  12. Wayne says:

    Hi Charles

    Cheers pal im a member of Stan James so will have a try



  13. Charles E says:

    Hello Wayne – sorry I got your name wrong!! You’re welcome anyway.

    Hi Matt – thanks for all the info you keep giving and I hope I can chip in with a tip or two whenever I find them!

  14. Matt Houghton Matt Houghton says:

    Your more than welcome.

    And feel free to chip in with a tip whenever you want. The more the merrier!


  15. Bruce says:

    I recall a bet(from the distant pass). It was to try and find winning trebles. 4 winners out of 9 selections are required. The betting slip was as follows.

    Select 9 (almost any sport)in any timed order,put them into 3 groups, 1,2,3. Instructions: Any 2 from G1 with any 1 from G2, any 2 from G2 with any 1 from G3, any 2 from G3 with any 1 from G1. Plus a treble on each Group. 4 winners gives you at least 1 treble but may give you 3, 5 may give you 6. Total number of bets 30. Best used when plenty of races.

    The stake is in your hands!

  16. Garry says:

    A bet called the cross and double is similar to the round robin but with only two selections.

    Horse A £1.00
    Horse B £1.00

    £1 Double

    same as the round robin, the single win becomes £2 if you have a winner

  17. Charles E says:

    Now Skybet offer the round robin, too.

  18. Paul says:

    What about firm going? Do we eliminate a meeting if the going is firm?

  19. Gordon says:

    Hi Matt,

    Just to clarify, if we leave out amateur and ladies races, then we apply this to handicaps only, is that correct? And it can be used for both flat and jumps?



  20. John H says:

    Skybet have now withdrawn the online bet due to ‘technical’ issues! Can still be placed by phone.

  21. Matt Houghton Matt Houghton says:

    Hi Gordon/Paul/John,

    Apologies for the late reply, I’ve been in Spain the last couple of days and haven’t had too much access to the internet.

    The system is purely for handicap races and can be used for both flat and jumps (just make sure that you leave out amateur and ladies races).

    Firm going should be fine, however do remember that all systems are open to tweaking and if you find that the results on firm ground aren’t as good, you may want to rule it out.

    And John, cheers for the info. I wonder if the ‘technical issue’ in question is that it was losing them money?!

    All the best,

  22. Paul says:

    Hi Matt, need more eliminators, system worked very well but since start of the flat taken a slight downturn, was thinking of putting in fields of 12 runners or less, wot u think or any more ideas/eliminators from you, thanx.

  23. Matt Houghton Matt Houghton says:

    Hi Paul,

    It’s well worth tweaking any system if you spot an opportunity and I think that a 12 runner or less rule would work well.

    I think another thing to note is that the beginning of a season (flat and NH) are always tricky as most horses are returning from a long absence and so performances are less consistent. As such, I would expect a dip in most systems around this time.

    I haven’t done a great deal of work on this particular system as it’s not one of my own and so I’d just advise you to keep good records of the results and if you see something that you think can be improved, go for it.


  24. Patrick says:

    Totesport do a round robin. You can have a 10p round robin if you wish – which is just a pound. I’ve used them for a long time.
    I hope this proves useful.

  25. Sue says:

    Hi I am really new to this so excuse my ignorance. Can you tell me is there any way you can get the Daily mail race page and forcasts online as I can’t find a link?

  26. Matt Houghton Matt Houghton says:

    Hi Sue,

    I may be wrong but I don’t believe that there is – you’d have to buy the paper.

    You can however get the Racing Post cards and forecasts free of charge on the internet. Here’s the link:


  27. Sue says:

    Excellent! Thanks for your help

  28. Bob Watson says:

    Hi all, just to let everyone know who wasnt aware , the free website for “at the races” posts daily tips. Hugh Taylor their top tipster yesterday gave a 33/1 winner and a 4/1,ajuicy 132/1 double, Bob.

  29. james harley says:

    for any one interested here is a dundee shuffle

    4 selections combined in 4 full stake Singles Any to Come a half stake Trixie on the other three, 6 half stake Doubles Any to Come a full stake Double on the other two, 4 half stake Trebles and each way half stake Accumulator.
    (16 bets, 4 at full stake and 12 at half stake, e.g. 4 x 50p + 12 x 25p = £5 stake).
    for a whole range of type of bets look at this website

  30. john says:

    Hi Matt,Ladbrokes do a pre printed slip for the Round Robin,Win or Each Way available. John

  31. Matt Houghton Matt Houghton says:

    Thanks John. I wonder if that’s a new slip, I certainly hadn’t spotted it.

  32. Julian Burrows says:

    thanks looks worth a try

  33. Dave Fretwell says:

    The Round Robin is certainly not a new bet I have used it on occasions for years. Corals do a pre-printed slip, Mark Jarvis (not sure if this is a national bookmaker chain or just local around Yorkshire)also and I think Betfred used to do one. I am sure it has always been possible to do each way betting on a Round Robin. Thanks for the explanation about SSA that is something that has baffled me over the years. A similar 3 selection bet is the Patent, 7 bets – 3 x singles, 3 x doubles and 1 x treble, @ £1 each way the bet would cost £14.00 whereas the Round Robin would cost £20.00. The Round Robin pays a little more due the SSA bet but costs more to stake, the same selection rules could be used as above. This could be a cheaper bet option for Terry M who adds the 3 singles aswell to the Round Robin!

  34. Reg Hollands says:

    Thanks to all for all your comments. Good luck to you Sue “Born again Bettor here .Good luck . Many thanks matt for all your e mails, studies , advice etc missed out on your last offer . Keep it coming

  35. Reg Hollands says:

    Hi Matt. In short this system must be putting wagers on Penalty horses (weight) ? Is my assumption correct.

  36. Matt Houghton Matt Houghton says:

    Hi Reg,

    Thanks for your feedback. This system has been designed for handicap races only, so that’s the ones were each horse is assigned a weight.

    It’s quite a simple method, so do feel free to modify it if you see room for expansion or improvement.


  37. Robert Bates says:

    I have used these for years but I have found that a “Lucky 15” is a better bet.

  38. ianCm says:

    I’m a bit slow. In the SSA above suppose Wonder Boy runs at 14:20 and Lucky Chance at 15:00. I can see that if Wonder Boy wins then as addition £10 could be put on Lucky Chance, but if Lucky Chance wins how can extra £10 be put on Wonder Boy? The race is over.

  39. Matt Houghton Matt Houghton says:

    Hi Ian,

    Good question that! I’m not 100% sure but I would imagine that it doesn’t really matter because you are placing the bet before the first race.

    You won’t get your winnings untill after the two races, so if the stake for the earlier bet is adjusted that’s not a problem as it is part of the bet instruction.


  40. Keith says:

    Round Robins Hah! I used to be a settler years ago before calculators were invented. Every bet was settled by old fashioned pen paper and arithmetic. No problem except…I HATED settling round robins. These old boys would come in and place 2.5p Each Way round robins! They scrambled my brain, I’ve never been right since!

  41. Matt Houghton Matt Houghton says:

    Sounds like a nightmare Keith!

    I’d be interested to know how many Betting Rant subscribers have worked in the industry at one time or another – it seems like there are a fair few.

  42. liam says:

    Better than the round robin is the permed robin.4 selections 40 bets and a good bet for £20 is say 40p win perm robin and £2.ew accumulator.One winner give 6 times the stake

  43. Andy H says:

    If you want to put four horses in a round robin type bet, try a bet called a flag. Its a yankee with the 6 doubles in SSA’s (or cross bets as we used to call them). So thats 23 bets. If you get one winner you have 3x times your stake money. E.G. A £1 Flag bet costs £23. Get one winner at 5/1 and you get £15 returned, if the winner is 8/1 then it’s £24 returned. You can have each way flags too. There is a site that works out returns on both Round Robins and Flags. Its

  44. In the long run, with all possible outcomes coming up as the stats suggest…..

    £1 on each selection

    Sel 1 @ 2/1 Sel 2 @ 3/1 Stake Return on singles Return SSA

    L L 2 0 0
    L L 2 0 0
    W L 2 3 2
    L W 2 4 3
    L L 2 0 0
    W L 2 3 2
    L L 2 0 0
    L W 2 4 3
    W L 2 3 2
    L L 2 0 0
    L L 2 0 0
    W W 2 7 12
    — — —
    TOTALS 24 24 24

    Overall result? In the long run SSA is a complete waste of time as you get back no more nor less than sticking to singles. Why do think the bookies allow it? So that you win more? Get real!

  45. Telly says:

    Thanks for the detailed explanation of the Round Robin bet. Other sites I’d visited don’t explain it clearly, but yours does.

  46. Francis Dolan says:

    I placed a small round robin just to try it but 2 of the horses turned out as NR; the third came second but the bookie only returned £1.50 of my fiver even though two-thirds of the horses didn’t run. Is this right?

  47. Matt Houghton Matt Houghton says:

    Hi Francis,

    I think that’s right – did you bet with 50p per unit?

    If so then your first two horses made up three units – that’s your £1.50 back – and the third failed to win.


  48. glynn29 says:

    the only online bookie who takes the rounr robin is boylesports.

  49. BatchHall says:

    Re: Wayne, Phil and Dave Foster, you can bet the Round Robin online with BETFRED.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.

Not yet a member? Join Betting Rant free and get access to all the members only content including free betting systems!

Already a member but haven't registered yet? Please follow the links to the registration page in any email issue of Betting Rant from 12th July 2012 onwards.

Download SIX mini sports trading systems for FREE

Sign up here and I'll immediately email you a copy of my Sports Trading Bible, worth £20, COMPLETELY FREE of charge...

What's more, you'll also receive my e-letter, the Betting Rant… And again, it's COMPLETELY FREE.

I respect your privacy and will never pass
on your email address to anyone else.

© 2017 Betting Rant. All rights reserved. | Agora Lifestyles Ltd, Curzon House, 24 High Street, Banstead, Surrey, SM7 2LJ | Registered in England No. 3303666. VAT No. GB 629 7287 94.

Gambling is high risk, never bet with money you cannot afford to lose. Please gamble responsibly, for information and advice visit the gambleaware website at: This content is not intended for audiences under the age of 18 years of age.