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how to work out a patent bet

We independently review betting sites. Sign-ups through our links may earn us a commission at no extra cost to you, this never influences our listings’ order.

If you want to know how to work out a patent bet, then we show you all about this wager made up of three singles, as many Doubles and a Treble based on three selections from different events. You will also discover the the different variants of this combination and system wager.

How Does a Patent Bet Work?

how to work out a patent bet

A patent bet is a type of combination wager available through online bookmakers featuring three selections. The three picks in this type of bet produce seven different wagers, which can be broken down as follows.

  • Three singles
  • Three doubles
  • One treble

That is patent betting explained. As combination wagers go, it’s a very simple one, which is perhaps one of the reasons why this type of bet is so popular, especially in horse racing.

How to Work Out a Patent Bet

We’re now going to show you how to calculate a patent bet. Let’s start simply by identifying our three selections as A, B and C. The following table, shows you how the various combinations play out:

Part of Patent Combination
3 Singles A, B, C
3 Doubles AB, AC, BC
1 Trebles ABC

So in order to get a return on a patent, you just need one of your selections to win. If it were a pick at a big enough price, you might make a profit from that one winner. If you manage to get two winners in your patent, then you’ll almost certainly make a profit, as you’ll have two single winners and one double. Get all three right and you’ve really hit the jackpot.

Let’s now give you a patent bet example with odds and stakes, so you can see how much can be won. For our hypothetical bet we’re going to stake £10. A £10 patent would cost £70 in total, as there are seven bets – £10 x 7 = £70

Our three selections are going to be priced at 2/1, 3/1 and 4/1. If only the 2/1 selection won, you would win £20, plus get your £10 stake bet. So you would have staked £70 and received £30 back, resulting in a £40 loss.

If only the 3/1 pick won you would lose £30 (£30 + £10 – £70 = -£30). Should your 4/1 selection be the only winner, you would lose £20 (£40 +£10 – £70 = -£20).

Now let’s see what you would get back if two winners came in. If the 2/1 and 3/1 bets were winners, you’d get total returns of £190, giving you a £120 profit.

  • 2/1 single winner = £30
  • 3/1 single winner = £40
  • 2/1 + 3/1 double winner = £120

A 2/1 winner, combined with a 4/1 shot would return £230, with a profit of £160. If it were the 3/1 and 4/1 selections that won, you would receive £290, with a total profit of £220.

So by now you’re probably wondering how much you’d win if all the selections were winners. Were your 2/1, 3/1 and 4/1 picks all successful, you’d receive a return of £1190, which gives a profit of £1120.

  • 2/1 single winner = £30
  • 3/1 single winner = £40
  • 4/1 single winner = £50
  • 2/1 + 3/1 double winner = £120
  • 2/1 + 4/1 double winner = £150
  • 3/1 + 4/1 double winner = £200
  • 2/1 + 3/1 + 4/1 treble winner = £600

You now know how to work out a Patent bet. As you can see, getting two out of the three picks delivers a healthy profit, while all three gives you a really big win. Unsurprisingly, patent bets are extremely popular amongst punters.

Pros & Cons of the Patent Bet Explained

Having read through our work out Patent bet example, you can probably understand that there are some pros and cons with this type of combination wager. We think that the benefits far outweigh the drawbacks, but in the interest of fairness, here are pros and cons as we seen them.

  • Land a return even if only one leg win
  • Likely to turn a profit if you have two winners
  • All three delivers really big winnings
  • Patent bet can be permed
  • Each way patent bets are available
  • Unit stake multiplied by seven so can be expensive
  • Odds need to be big enough to make bet worthwhile
  • Rule 4 deductions apply with horse racing patent
  • Non-runners can see legs made void

What is a Patent Bet in Horse Racing?

By far the most popular sport in which punters place patent bets is horse racing. With there being multiple meetings a day, which all feature at least six or seven races, bettors are spoilt for choice when it comes to picking out a patent. Even the hottest favourites tend to be available at reasonably big prices, which means that if you’re lucky enough to pick out two or three winners, then you’ll land a healthy profit.

What is a Patent Bet in Football?

The other sport where patents are particularly popular with punters, is football. Again, it’s a sport with a packed schedule, all-year round, so sportsbook users can easily make up a patent with three selections, even in quieter months such as June or July. You need reasonably big odds to make it worthwhile to place a patent bet meaning that punters would be advised to be careful when making their picks. While there are plenty of football betting markets with generous odds, there are also plenty that feature very short-priced favourites.

The Each Way Patent Bet

With each way betting and patent bets both being popular amongst horse racing, you perhaps won’t be surprised to learn that it’s possible to place a patent each-way bet with the bookies. This doubles the amount of bets involved in a patent, taking it from seven bets to 14.

While this obviously makes it more expensive, but the advantage is that you mitigate the risk of one or more of your selections failing to win. Again, this is another scenario where you have to pay attention to the prices on offer. If the place terms make the odds too small, you could face a situation where it’s difficult to break even, even if you have a couple of horses place.

A Permed Patent Bet

Another option is a permed patent. Instead of three selections, you can have four, five or even six choices. They are then permed to give you every possible patent permutation. The amount of bets for a permed patent can get pretty big, even when just adding one or two extra selections, as the following table demonstrates.

Number of Selections Bets in Permed Patent
4 28
5 70
6 140

Patent Calculator

As we’ve said, there are situations when you have to be careful with your patent selections, to ensure that the odds are big enough. While it’s perfectly possible to work out possible winnings yourself if you’re good at maths, it’s much more simple and quicker to use a patent bet calculator.

You just put in the odds of your selections and the results, to instantly get a calculation of your winnings. That means you can experiment, with different possible results, to see how much you stand to lose/win, in varying scenarios. We’ve got our own free bet calculator that you can use, if you’re wondering how to work out a patent bet.

Patent Betting Tips & Strategy

We’re now going to give you some tips and strategies that will help you to be profitable when placing a patent bet.

Make Sure That Things Even Out

When we talked about each way patents earlier, we stressed the importance of making selections that brought value if they only placed. Analyse both the price and the place terms. A good measure is to try and pick out selections that will pay out at odds of at least Evens (2.0), should they place. So if the place terms were 1/4, you would need a selection to be priced at 4/1 (5.0), while if the terms were 1/5, you’d need odds of 5/1 (6.00).

Pick Out Quality Singles

When you’re picking out your patent selections, it makes sense to consider the consequences of only one of your selections winning. Will you lose money if that’s the case? How much? It might be difficult to find selections at prices that would actually see you make a profit, but you could at least try to pick our value bets where just one single landing, would reduce your potential loss significantly. If only one selection winning is likely to result in a major loss, then it might be worth going for a trixie, which is another combination bet with three selections, but with no singles, only doubles and a treble.

Be Careful With Your Perms

As we explained earlier, adding extra selections to make permed patents, can quickly increase your total stake. Six selections adds up to 140 bets. Even if you have a small stake per bet, such as 50p or £1, that equals a big investment. That means that you have to be very careful in terms of the odds of your selections, to ensure that you don’t create a situation where it’s difficult to win. Only place a permed patent if you’ve got four or more selections that you really believe in and that provide value.

Best Bookies for Patent Betting

We hope that you enjoyed our guide to patent betting. You should now understand the patent betting meaning and be confident in making such a wager. We have explained how to work out a patent bet, so you should be able to calculate how much you may win or lose.

When it comes to finding a good bookie to place a patent at, you’ll find that it’s a type of wager that any serious UK bookmaker will provide. As it is a popular with horse racing fans, picking a sportsbook that has a good reputation in that area, should ensure that you’ll be able to place a patent.


How to place a Patent bet?

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Dan Fitch
Dan Fitch
Dan Fitch

A writer and editor for some of the top names in the gambling industry for nearly 20 years, Dan also works as a freelance sports journalist for publications and websites such as ESPN, FourFourTwo and LiveScore.