Updated Updated: February 10, 2020

Motorsports Betting Guide | Where and How to Bet Explained

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Betting On Motorsports

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There’s nothing quite as exhilarating as watching dozens of racing cars zooming around a track determined to finish the race in first place. Motorsports are hugely popular, with big-name events, tournaments and competitions attracting millions of viewers from around the world and generating millions in profit. The more technology progresses and the more advanced the racing cars get, the more hooked on motorsports people get.

While betting on motorsports is perfectly accessible to newbies, it has enough depth to it that it appeals to hard-core sports betting fans as well. It isn’t just an individual racer that’s responsible for a win: it’s the car itself as well. If a really good racer’s going to do well, he needs to be driving a really good car, i.e. a car that’s been expertly designed and painstakingly manufactured, with excellent performance capabilities and a meticulous maintenance schedule. The team that develop the car is in many ways just as responsible for any wins the car notches up as the drivers who race the cars around. Motorsports get really exciting when the top racers are paired with cars by the top manufacturers.

Betting Markets Available

Looking to place bets on motorsports? You’re in luck because there’s no shortage of events for UK residents to bet on. There are lots of major-league racing tournaments and competitions taking place throughout the year. No matter what time of the year it is, there’s pretty much always a big racing event to bet on just around the corner!

Below are some of the biggest international motorsports events you can bet on at UK bookmakers. Whether you’re betting offline or online, you should find plenty of options available.

Formula One: This is the world’s largest and most popular motorsports racing organization in the world. The F1 Grand Prix races see many of the world’s top racers and teams come together to compete at some of the most iconic racecourses in the world. The winding streets of Monaco are perhaps the best known of these. Cars are single-seat and open-wheel. There’s so much to say about F1 that we have an entirely separate page dedicated to it.

NASCAR: Though NASCAR isn’t as popular in the UK as Formula One, it still attracts plenty of bets from UK motorsports fans. NASCAR’s stock-car races are in fact the second largest sporting event of any kind in the US, after only the NFL. The races are broadcast in some 150 countries, with the Daytona 500 the brand’s best-known event by far. This thrilling 500-mile race is held annually at the Daytona International Speedway at Daytona Beach, Florida, and is the biggest of NASCAR’s many races by far.

IndyCar: What sets IndyCar races apart from other big-league races is the fact that there’s more of an element of danger. The courses are often more challenging, the cars faster and the races a lot closer. In recent years, there have been efforts to make the organization’s races safer, though they’re still just as thrilling to watch. The big IndyCar event is the Indianapolis 500-Mile Race, which remains to this day the longest-running automobile race in the world.

Types of Bets

If you’re keen to bet on motorsports, have a look at the different betting options available before getting your wagers placed. The line-up of available bets will of course vary depending on where you’re placing your bets. Here’s an overview of some of the main bets you’ll find at many top UK bookmakers:

  • Direct Bet: You can place this type of bet before the competition starts and you’re simply betting on a single driver to win outright.
  • Complicated Bet: For this, you’re betting on which racer will earn the most points from taking part in various different international championships.
  • Podium Bet: This bet has you predict which racers will come in 1st, 2nd and 3rd place
  • Fastest Lap: For this bet, you’re simply betting on which racer completes a lap of the race track in the fastest time.
  • Matching Bet: Pick two or more drivers and predict what order they finish in.
  • Non-Finish Bet: This bet involves predicting that a particular car won’t make it past the finish line due to driver error or a mechanical failure of some kind.

Remember that with motorsports, there’s not just the driver to bet on. Most tournaments offer rewards to the manufacturing team as well as the racer. You’ll find that pretty much every UK bookmaker will offer bets on both the manufacturer and the racer. This makes betting on motorsports all the more exciting.

Any good UK bookmaker will offer a broad range of betting options covering all the major competitions and plenty of other big-name leagues as well. You should be able to find an online sportsbook with enough betting options to suit your needs easily enough. Shop around until you find one with all the motorsports betting options you need. If you’re betting offline, don’t just settle with what your local bookmaker has to offer. There may well be other bookmakers in your area that offer more betting options and better odds.

Most bookmakers have a mobile site that lets you place bets while on the go. If you really want to keep up with the latest goings-on and not be out of the loop, it’s a good idea to visit a mobile sportsbook while you’re out of the house. Some sites even have their own app you can download onto your smartphone or tablet, so long as it runs on the iOS or Android operating systems.

Betting Odds

If you’re going to be placing bets on motorsports, it helps to know how the odds work. There are three main ways in which odds are represented: as fractional odds, as decimal odds and as moneyline odds. In the UK and Ireland, it’s fractional odds that are used the most often by bookmakers, both online and offline. Let’s have a look at how this works.

Fractional Odds

With fractional odds, the odds are represented as two whole numbers separated by a slash, e.g. 4/1. The number on the left represents your potential winnings in relation to your stake, which is represented by the number on the right. Let’s say you place a £1 bet with odds of 4/1. Should you win, you’ll receive your £1 back along with £4 in winnings, for a total of £5.

For a lot of fractional odds bets, the number on the left is bigger. If this is the case, you’ll stand to win a sum of money greater than your initial stake. However, if the number on the right is bigger, you can still win, of course, but the amount you’ll win will be smaller than your initial stake.

Let’s say you place a £10 bet with odds of 1/2. The ‘2’ refers to your stake and the ‘1’ refers to your potential winnings. Should you win, you would receive your stake back, along with £5 in winnings, for a total of £15.

There are two other types of odds: decimal and moneyline. Even though these aren’t as commonly used in the UK and Ireland, you may want to learn how this works. Many bookmakers will let you switch between odds formats so you can use one that suits you the most.

Decimal Odds

You’ll find decimal odds used most commonly in Australia and New Zealand, as well as in Canada and throughout Europe. These odds are represented as a whole or decimal number (hence their name) and take into account your stake as well as your winnings. The number represents the total amount of money you’ll receive in relation to your stake once you’ve parted with your stake. Let’s say you place a £1 wager on a bet with odds of 2. Should you win, the total amount of money you’ll receive will be double your initial stake. Therefore, you’ll have made a profit of £1.

If the odds are a decimal number, they work in the same way. If you place a £1 wager on a bet with odds of 1.25 and you win, you’ll receive £1.25 and will have made a profit of £0.25.

Moneyline Odds

These odds are favoured by American bookmakers. They’re represented by either a positive or a negative number.

If it’s a positive number, this refers to how much money can be won if you place a $100 wager. So, for example, if you place a $100 wager on a motorsports event with odds given at +200 and you win, you would receive $200 in winnings and your initial stake, for a total of $300. Positive numbers are only for bets with odds better than evens.

If it’s a negative number, this refers to how much money must be wagered in order for you to win $100. Let’s say you want to place a wager on a motorsports event. If you find a bet with odds of -200, this means you would have to bet $200 in total in order to win $100. Negative numbers are only for bets with odds worse than evens. 

Betting Strategies and Tips

It’s worth pointing out that motorsports, in general, can be quite a fast-paced and unpredictable sport to keep up with. It’s not unheard of for favourites to underperform and for outsiders to emerge victorious. Then again, there are some big-name drivers who have given solid, reliable performances over their careers and are pretty safe to bet on.

Don’t just pick any random racer and bet on them; instead, do plenty of research so you’re more likely to back a winner. Again, motorsports racing can be unpredictable, but the more you know about the sport and its races, and the more up-to-date you are with the latest goings-on, the better decisions you’ll make when placing your bets. Read up on the racers, find out who’s expected to do well and how racers taking part in the event you’re betting have been faring recently in other events.

The weather conditions during a race can have a significant impact on its outcome. Some drivers might be hampered by the rain, while others might be perfectly comfortable driving in the rain. Likewise, some cars might be at a disadvantage when driving in the rain, yet there may be others that actually perform better in the rain. Before any racing event you’re betting on, keep up to date with the local weather and keep a track of it once the race gets underway.

Look at what lots of different bookies are offering. You may find a site offering better odds than the one you’re currently signed up to. If you’re going to be serious about making money from motorsports betting, you’ll want the best odds possible so that if you win, you get the greatest return on your stake.

When it comes to deciding how much money to bet with, it’s a good idea to spend most of your budget on safer bets. Place money on bets with better odds and you’re more likely to see a return. However, you may fancy wagering on racers that don’t necessarily have the best odds. If you’re going to do this, you should probably still focus on the safer bets and set aside a smaller sum to place on the racers less likely to win.

FAQ

There are several online bookies available in The UK offering odds on motorsport such as:

Conclusion

So if you’re keen to place bets on motorsports, you’re in luck. UK bookmakers, both brick-and-mortar ones and online ones, typically offer lots of different betting options covering all the major competitions and more.

The sport is especially popular with several large international organisations holding huge competitions throughout the year, so there are always bets to be placed. There’s a lot to this sport, so reading up on it and gaining some knowledge can help you make better decisions and ultimately score some winning bets.

Motorsports are some of the most fast-paced, exciting and adrenaline-pumping sports out there, even if you’re just a spectator. They’re highly competitive and at times unpredictable, so betting on them can be a lot of fun indeed.