The Excitement of Horse Pick 6 Wagers
A pick 6 bet works exactly the same as a pick 3 wagers, but requires the punter to correctly pick the winner of the first six races of the day. While this is a difficult bet to win, the payday can be massive. The dream of six and even seven figure paydays makes the pick 6 a popular wager among casual and professional punters alike. As a child, I remember going to the track with my best friends’ grandfather, in the new Corvette he bought after hitting the pick 6 a couple weeks earlier. We heard he paid off the house with the rest of it.
Although the pick 6 is hard to win, there are a lot of international tracks that online bettors can wager at every day. For punters who can afford it, the opportunity to be selective and go after huge payouts are available almost every day of the year.
If a pick 6 isn’t hit at a track, the majority of the betting pool is carried over to the next racing day. The smaller, remaining portion of the pool is paid out to bettors who hit 5 of 6 winners, with decent payouts for them as well. This builds a larger pool for the following race-day, and even more punters gambling on horses go after the pick 6 at that track. Think of it like the lotto, when nobody wins it one week, everyone and their brother is buying lotto tickets the following week.
In horse racing, the pick 6 is often carried over for multiple days. This is how pick 6’s can snowball into those big six and seven figure paydays. For serious horse racing enthusiasts who bet online, why go after the smaller pick 6’s when you can selectively go after larger ones at different tracks? The cost of the wager is the same regardless of the prize pool, so this is a good way for online punters to maximize their winning potential.
Pick 6 Wheels
Most people who win pick 6’s win it on a pick 6 wheel. Wheels allow bettors to select multiple horses per race, making it much easier to produce a winning ticket. Instead of selecting one horse per race, the punter can select any number of horses per race. This is especially useful for races where it’s difficult to select a clear favourite.
For example, if there is a race where three horses look evenly matched, you can select all three of them. If you correctly pick the winners of the other five races, combined with any of the three horses you selected for the 6th race, you’re collecting a winning ticket.
Multiple horses can be selected for as many of the races as the punter chooses. For example, you could select two horses for race 1, three horses for race 2, one horse for race three, four horses for race 5, and so on. With every potential winning combination added to a ticket, this costs another bet. This can get quite expensive, and still be very difficult to win.
How to Calculate the Cost of a Pick 6 Wheel
The math for calculating a pick 6 wheel is actually quite simple. Don’t worry, there’s no brain-explosion involved in this. Remember, the cost is based on the number of potential winning combinations selected (one bet per combination). Let’s assume you’ve chosen 2 horses for every race of the pick 6. The math works as follows: 2 x 2 x 2 x 2 x 2 x 2 = 64. Assuming you placed a £1 wheel, the bet would cost £64. If it was a £2 wheel, the cost would be 64 x £2 = £128 total.
Here’s exactly how it works:
Race 1: 2 horses = 2
Race 2: 2 x 2 = 4
Race 3: 4 x 2 = 8
Race 4: 8 x 2 = 16
Race 5: 16 x 2 = 32
Race 6: 32 x 2 = 64 total combinations
Now let’s do the same calculation assuming you’re betting a mixed number of horses for each race.
Race 1: 2 horses
Race 2: 3 horses
Race 3: 1 horse
Race 4: 2 horses
Race 5: 2 horses
Race 6: 3 horses
The math looks like this: 2 x 3 x 1 x 2 x 2 x 3 = 72. A £1 pick 6 wheel would cost £72.
To lower the cost of a pick 6 wheel, the removal of one horse can make a significant difference. To display the difference, let’s remove one horse from race 2, and leave the rest the same. The math looks like this: 2 x 2 x 1 x 2 x 2 x 3 = 48 total combinations (£48 minimum bet). The removal of this one horse (specifically going from 3 to 2 horses) results in a cost savings of 33.3%. So, it’s smart to keep your pick 6 wheels tight, and get the highest value possible. In some cases when that third horse is offering medium-high odds, it might be worth keeping him on the ticket and hoping he wins. However, if his odds are low and you don’t feel strongly about his chances of winning, it’s usually a better value to remove him.
Let’s go over another way to lower the cost of a pick 6. In a race where you’re selecting 2 horses, the removal of one horse can lower the total cost of the ticket by 50%. Let’s use the original example above, but removing one horse from race 5. The math looks like this: 2 x 3 x 1 x 2 x 1 x 3 = 36 total combinations (£36 minimum bet). This shows us how critical it is to be able to single out a couple of horses in a pick 6. Every time you’re selecting one horse in a race versus two, the cost of the wager is 50% less than it would be. On days when all of the races appear wide open, it’s usually better to skip the pick 6 entirely.