What is lay betting in horse racing?

Lay betting is essentially a bet against a given outcome available in horse racing. Think of it as “shorting” on the stock market, but in a betting context.

It is common in the U.K. and Europe but generally available in the U.S. only in New Jersey on Betfair’s exchange wagering system, as far as I know.

Here’s how it works: If you think the public is overestimating the chances of a 7-5 favorite to win, you can offer the horse at 8-5 on the exchange. If your offer is accepted by another player, you are essentially acting as the “house” and determining how much action you’re willing to accept.

In the end, if the horse does win the race, the wagering platform will pay the horse’s backers out of your account. If it doesn’t, you collect whatever the other players wagered, minus the betting platform’s “takeout.” Read more about horse betting betting strategies and check out these U.S. online horse wagering sites to learn more.