While it’s relatively straightforward to calculate your payout on a bet – you can read our separate article about that – things become slightly more tricky when we consider full cover bets like Lucky 15, Patent and so on.
For the uninitiated, these are bet types where you put together a multiple-leg coupon, and your winnings are calculated based upon how they fare.
The fun thing about cover bets is that you don’t need all of your selections to win to guarantee a return, but the specific payout you get is determined by how many do win and how much you have staked.
How to Work Out the Payout for a Lucky 15 Bet
The calculation to work out how much your Lucky 15 bet will payout is essentially the same as any other full cover wager – the only difference is the number of legs and your total stake.
For a Lucky 15, we know that we are backing four selections and all of the various combinations of bets, namely:
- Singles x4
- Doubles x6
- Trebles x4
- Accumulator x1
To calculate our return, we can turn our fractional odds to decimal and multiply them together in their various combinations.
Let’s say we have four selections: Red Rum (2.00), Desert Orchid (2.50), Frankel (3.00) and Tiger Roll (3.25), with a £1 stake on each leg (total outlay of £15).
They all win, and so our calculation is straightforward:
- Singles x4: £2.00 + £2.50 + £3.00 + £3.25 = £10.50
- Doubles x6: all doubled combinations of our odds multiplied = £42.88
- Trebles x4: all trebled combinations of our odds multiplied = £75.13
- Accumulator x1: all odds multiplied together = £48.75
Add all that lot together and you get a total of £177.50, which minus our £15 stake yields a net return of £162.50.
You can calculate what happens if only two of your four selections win. Let’s say that Desert Orchid (2.50) and Frankel (3.00) win for us:
- Singles x4: £2.50 + £3.00 wins – £2 in lost stakes = £3.50
- Doubles x6: (2.50 x 3.00 = £7.50) – £5 in lost stakes = £2.50
- Trebles x4: £4 in lost stakes = -£4.00
- Accumulator x1: £1 in lost stake = -£1.00
So it’s an overall loss in this situation, returning £6 of the £15 staked.
Calculating Lucky 15 Bonus Payouts
These days, many bookmakers offer two different types of bonus on Lucky 15 and other full cover bet types.
The first is where just one of your selections wins. A handful of bookies will multiply your odds on that particular pick – perhaps 2x or 3x the odds for a Lucky 15. Of course, you will still be operating at a loss when all of your lost stakes are added into the mix, but this is a nice consolation prize nonetheless.
So, if in our example Frankel was our sole winner at 3.00 with a double-your-odds offer, we’d actually get paid out at 6.00 – so £5, in this case, which means we would lose £10 overall rather than £15.
The second type of bookmaker bonus for cover bets is the percentage extra that is offered for all four selections winning. This ranges from one bookie to the next, but generally speaking 10% is a useful guide.
So let’s apply that to our example again. As you will recall, our Lucky 15 – when all four selections landed – netted us a total return of £177.50. So now all we need to do is work out 10% of that, which we know is £17.75.
So, we bank £17.75 in bonus cash, which to go with our expected return of £177.50 creates a total payout of £195.25.