How to beat the bookies at the races with Matched Betting

The battle with bookmakers tends to end only one way so it was great to discover how to beat the bookies at their own game with matched betting. Betting exchanges allow us to lay horses and in turn, use free bets received from online bookmakers to guarantee a risk-free profit.

The strategy is known as matched betting and involves finding selections with closely matched odds on the exchange and bookmaker site. By backing and laying the selection you can qualify for a free bet for little or no cost and use a similar strategy to make a profit from the free bet.

There is what could be described as a cottage industry flowering in the UK with people earning £500 to £2000 per month by applying this method to betting offers. You can start matched betting with matchedbets.com, the website provides suitable betting offers with guides explaining how to make money from each one. Odds matching software and a matched betting calculator find the best bets and calculate the ideal stakes to ensure you make a similar profit regardless of the result.

Example of matched betting

Here is an example of how matched betting is used to make a guaranteed profit from Ladbrokes’ £50 free bet welcome offer using nominal odds of 6/4 (2.5) for the first bet and 9/2 (5.5) for the free bet.

First, place the qualifying bet in order to earn a free bet:

Bet £50 on your horse to win on Ladbrokes at 2.5, giving a potential win of £75
Lay £50.40 on the same horse to lose on Smarkets exchange at 2.5, for a potential loss of £75.60

If the horse wins, you win £75 from Ladbrokes less £75.60 loss on Smarkets for an overall loss of 60p
If the horse loses, you lose £50 on Ladbrokes and win £49.40 (£50.40 less 2% commission) for an overall loss of 60p

Therefore it costs 60p to receive a £50 free bet.

To make a profit from the free bet:

Place the £50 free bet on a horse to win on Ladbrokes at 5.5 for a potential win of £225
Lay £41.06 on the same horse to lose on Smarkets at 5.5 for a potential loss of £184.77

If the horse wins, you win £224 from Ladbrokes less £184.77 loss on Smarkets for an overall profit of £40.23. If the horse loses, you lose nothing on Ladbrokes and win £41.06 less 2% commission giving an overall profit of £40.24

The total profit from the offer is £40.24 (or £40.23) less 60p loss on the qualifying bet

Sign-up offers are an easy way to make money but there is much more to be made doing money back offers, price boosts, enhanced place terms and other betting promotions. So if you ever feel you can’t beat the bookie, you can turn to matched betting. Use it to replace your current betting system or as a means to replenish your betting bank and fund more days at the races.