The simplest parlay bet other than a two horse parlay is the rolling daily double. In many instances, the daily double pays better than a two race parlay because there is only one takeout rather than two. If you bet the first race, even when you win, the vig is taken from your winnings. Now you bet the second race and once again, even if you win, you’ve paid the vig again.
Since you bet money that you wagered in the first race along with the winnings from the first race, you’ve actually paid the vig twice. I don’t know how you feel about it, but I only like to pay for something once and then I want it to be mine. The easiest way to do that when betting multiple races is with an exotic such as the double or a pick three, to name just a few.
So other than the financial considerations, what strategy can we apply to the double to make it pay even better? While there are no guarantees in life, you can usually depend upon a lot of the doubles bettors to use the morning line to find their live horses. If you handicap the races and find that a horse is seriously underestimated in the morning line, you may have found a golden opportunity.
Of course, all of this depends upon your own ability to spot a live horse and then to determine what that horse should go off at. The best way to find horses that may be good double bets is to start by making your own morning line for every race that has a double. After you’ve assigned odds, write them beside the morning line odds beside each horse’s name in the program.
Obviously, this is a good way to find overlays in other pools as well, but because of the nature of the double, because bettors are forced to choose horses before they see how the crowd bets, it is a good way to benefit from glitches in the morning line. A reasonably good handicapper can often find value in this way. Though you may not know how a horse will be bet in the double, looking at the morning line will give you a good idea.
You’ve probably seen this situation before. A horse is only a mild choice in the morning line and the double prices reflect only tepid interest, but when the race becomes live on the tote board, someone has dumped some serious money on the horse and it is one of the favorites. You realize that something is up with the horse and some inside money, or smart money has found its way into the pool. It is too late to play it as the second leg of the double, obviously, but if you have already played it, then you’re in a sweet spot indeed.