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what is a system bet

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A system bet is a combination of multiple, smaller wagers placed across several different selections. Unlike straight accumulators, you don’t need all selections to win some money back. Wondering what is a system bet and how does it work? Keep reading to find out the different types of these sports betting wagers you can place. We also provide system bet strategy tips and advice that can help you make the most of these bet types.

How Does a System Bet Work?

System bets allow you to make between 3 to 8 selections on different sports events. Within these selections are several combination bets – put together, they form anywhere up to 247 smaller bets running under the same wager. The more of these that win, the higher your return will be.

What is a System Bet Placing System Bet

The number of system bets running is relative total number of selections. For example, a Yankee has 11 equal cost wagers across four events while Canadians have 26 over five. Most of the best online bookmakers provide the option to choose system bets when selections on multiple events are made.

Different Types of System Bets Explained

There are multiple systems bets you can find at online bookmakers in the UK. They range in terms of size and odds, and have their own pros and cons. They are particularly popular on horse racing events and football matches, but can also be used on American football, rugby, cricket, and more.

Here are some of the most popular system bet types.

  • Trixie – The Trixie system bet consists of four equal cost sports bets from selections on three events.
  • Yankee – Made up of 11 equal cost bets on selections from four events, Yankee system bets consist of six doubles, four trebles, and one fourfold wager. New and advanced bettors may also consider the Super Yankee wager.
  • Canadian – With Canadians, you get 26 equal bets made up of selections from five separate events – these are split into 10 doubles, 10 trebles, five fourfolds, and one fivefold wager.
  • Heinz – The Heinz bet is comprised of 57 equal cost bets selected across six events. These include 15 doubles, 10 trebles, 15 fourfolds, six fivefolds, and one sixfold.
  • Super Heinz – With 120 bets covering seven events, a Super Heinz gets you 21 doubles, 35 trebles, 35 fourfold bets, 21 fivefolds, 7 sixfolds, and one sevenfold.
  • Goliath – This gigantic 247 bet wager covers eight events, featuring 28 doubles, 56 trebles, 70 fourfolds, 56 fivefolds, eight sevenfolds, and one eightfold.

The Best Sports for System Betting

Horse racing and football are widely regarded as the best sports for system betting. While you can use these bets on other sports events, such as tennis, cricket, or snooker, the exciting and often unpredictable nature of football betting and horse racing makes them particularly good choices.

Football Betting System Wagers

The Trixie and Yankees are among the best football betting systems bets. As the world’s most popular sport, betting on football is huge – as such, you will never run out of online markets to choose from. You can wager straight or each-way bets on the match-winner between Manchester United and Arsenal, half-time/full-time, over/under 1.5 goals, and more.

While this may be the case, we recommend loading up Goliath bets on football markets with short odds. The 1X2 market is a good example of one that should not be overly used. Instead, opt for the longer odds markets like first goalscorer or correct score – these and more are available for Premier League, Champions League, and international matches.

What is a System Bet Football Wagers

Trixies and Yankees are great for football betting markets as they are more suitable and less expensive than their counterparts. They are excellent alternatives to straight football accumulators, as you don’t need every leg to win. If you help cracking the different system bets meanings, use the links we shared earlier on this page to find a suitable one for you.

Horse Racing Betting System Wagers

Trixies, Yankees, Canadians, Heinz bets… It’s really a case of take your pick. All of these bets, including Super Heinz and Goliaths, are suitable for any horse racing betting system. There is simply no sport on the planet that is more suited to system bets – even with options like Lucky 15s and cover bets available.

Choosing the right system bet for you means considering a few different factors, such as your bankroll, the size of your bet, and the selections available. If you’re only learning how to bet on horses and are looking for short-range value, consider Trixies and Yankees.

What is a System Bet SH

If you know your stuff – and are aiming high at major festivals like Cheltenham or Melbourne – consider Super Heinz or Goliaths. Just keep in mind that some betting sites might not allow you to use free bookie offers against this type of bet.

A good understanding of racing will complement system bets on the larger side, too as they can get confusing. But the bottom line is that any systems wagers should be tailored around what you’re looking to achieve.

System Bet Calculator

Even the most proficient maths enthusiasts may struggle to work out potential winnings from a Canadian or Super Heinz without bet calculators. Accuracy is congruous with a positive betting experience, meaning getting things right is crucial.

So, instead of wondering what is a system bet likely to pay at betting sites, use our free bet calculator to figure out what it will pay. You can do this before making your selections to find out what you stand to win from your wagers.

What is a System Bet Free Bet Calculator

Or if you’re doing exceptionally well with your system bets, how much you stand to win in multiple, potential scenarios. You can bookmark the page and use it as your bet system calculator going forward – this ensures you’ll always be organised and informed with more than potential returns. It’s also good for single wagers, partial bets, and entire wagers.

When Should You Use a System Bet?

System bets aren’t necessarily restricted to horse racing or football. However, there are different types of bets that are suitable for different circumstances. For example, Yankee bets using a place betting system may be used when punters like horses in four different racing events. Or perhaps when someone wants to minimize their chances of losing their entire stake.

Many bettors use system wagers like Canadians to combine multiple straight/each-way bets racing bets from the same meeting. But it can often be as simple as making three or more horses from the same race cards. Many punters will avoid placing multiple, individual ante-post bets for the relative safety a system bet can offer.

What is a System Bet When to Use

Another time these bets can be used in a sports betting system is when a punter is looking for even some small returns from betting sites. Straight football trebles and accumulators pay more if all win, but nothing if one leg loses without acca insurance. Or when they simply don’t want to commit a large sum of cash to one bet. In cases like these, sound knowledge of sport can be used to make several, smaller choices in a system bet.

These bet types are often used by moderate to experienced bettors. That said, if you’re still getting to grips with understanding betting odds, don’t be afraid to ask what is a system bet used for (or when to use them). Better yet, come back to this page and increase your knowledge in stages.

System Bet Strategy That Works

No system bet strategy is guaranteed to work all the time. Whether it’s a Trixie bet system or a gambling strategy designed for a Super Heinz, you are relying on your selections coming through. Betting, by nature, can be unpredictable – but that doesn’t mean there aren’t strategies that work better than others.

4/2 Heinz Betting Strategy

Returns on the Heinz bet rely on two events from six going your way. The logic behind this type of betting strategy is to include two bets of Evens or shorter and four bets at 2/1 or more. Should the lower odds come through, success with one of the others can attain a positive profit margin on that racing card or betting series.

1/3 Yankee Betting Strategy

Yankee system bets require a minimum of two selections winning to see any sort of a return. As such, a slightly more ambitious strategy is to choose a favourite at Evens or more at ante-post or SP, and three selections at 3/1 or greater. If any three horses win, you may make a profit from such betting options.

4/4 Goliath Betting Strategy

This one is good to use when you are an experienced bettor on UFC fights, making a 50-50 split of favourites (1/2 or less) and outsiders (5/2 or more). As two selections are needed to win, this strategy accounts for both standard procedure and upsets and could even see some solid returns.

Best Bookies for System Bets

Almost all our recommended sports betting sites offer the means to place system bets. From Trixies to Goliaths, you won’t struggle for events to fill your wagers with.

Upon asking ourselves what is a system betting site that stands out above the rest, we’ve decided to go with BoyleSports for the following reasons. In addition to having consistently good odds and top markets, they have a great online bet slip system. Which is just what you need when placing your system bets online.


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Adam Haynes
Adam Haynes
Adam Haynes

Adam joined in August 2023, bringing almost a decade of betting knowledge with him. A former writer for, Adam prides himself on spotting a good bet, and loves to share his tips and picks across a wide range of sports and events. Adam is a huge boxing and MMA fan, and started his career writing about both. He is also passionate about his favourite sports teams, which are Glasgow Celtic, Dublin GAA, and Leinster Rugby. At the casino, you're most likely to see him at the poker or blackjack tables. But what he loves more than anything is writing about sports and the gambling industry. You can find his expert insight and commentary right here.

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